Am I forever obligated to keep his lawn? If he enforced his claim on me (say, by chaining me to a stake in his lawn) after making his 'gift' would it be reasonable for him to do so? Or should he have had my consent first before 'gifting' me with obligations?
You wax poetic about gifts and obligations, but you confuse gifts which require no quid-pro-quo with contracts which do.
Edit: I reread your comment and I can say that in one sense I agree with you. As a human wanting to have good interpersonal relationships with other humans, it would be a good thing to give back to those who have given to me. But this is a very specific thing...a particular individual who has done something for me may spark me to want to give something to him. However, there are also times when giving back is very imappropriate, as that implies an obligation that the original giver never intended. For example, I do not wish my son to give me anything. I have given him much, but he needs to keep what he has and save it. I did not give him a home, food, education so I could be paid back through some action of his. I gave him those things because I love him and want him to live a good life. Giving back to me implies an obligation that I do not want him to carry. It is not there.
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