(CNSNews) -- Federal Communications Commission (FCC) member Michael O'Rielly says it is "ludicrous to compare Internet access to a basic human right."
“Human rights are standards of behavior that are inherent in every human being,” O’Rielly said Thursday in a speech to the Internet Innovation Alliance, a coalition of business and non-profit organizations.
“They are the core principles underpinning human interaction in society. These include liberty, due process or justice, and freedom of religious beliefs.
“I find little sympathy with efforts to try to equate Internet access with these higher, fundamental concepts,” O'Rielly stated.
Internet access is not even a day-to-day necessity, the commissioner added.
“It is important to note that Internet access is not a necessity in the day-to-day lives of Americans and doesn’t even come close to the threshold to be considered a basic human right,” O’Rielly said.
“People do a disservice by overstating its relevancy or stature in people’s lives. People can and do live without Internet access, and many lead very successful lives,” he continued.
“Instead, the term ‘necessity’ should be reserved to those items that humans cannot live without, such as food, shelter, and water.”