Natural rights are rights that believe it is important for all animals or even living beings to have out of natural law. These rights are often viewed as inalienable, meaning they can almost never be taken away. The concept of what are natural rights has varied throughout history.
The idea first came up in ancient times but was discussed most famously by English philosopher John Locke. Locke said that the most important natural rights are "Life, Liberty, and Property". In the United States Declaration of Independence, the natural rights mentioned are "Life, Liberty, and the Pursuit of Happiness". The idea was also found in the Declaration of the Rights of Man. It is viewed by Locke, Jefferson, and others that the purpose of government is to protect peoples' natural rights through a social contract (an implicit agreement among the members of a society to cooperate for social benefits).