Why is it so hard to identify rights that are truly truly universal?
It is possible that there is no such thing as rights that are Universal. Rights usually have a cultural context. Philosophers have thought, spoken and written about human rights for thousands of years, but it is only in comparative recent years that these rights have been codified. Since the Second World War the major document embodying aspirations on human rights is the Universal Declaration of Human Rights. The murder of millions of civilians by the Germans was the obvious motivation for the Universal Declaration of Human Rights. However the Declaration went much further than expressing a right to life, liberty and property, as set out, for instance, by the seventeenth century philosopher, John Locke. The Universal Declaration of Human Rights sets out 30 articles containing human rights. This was a much more ambitious attempt at codifying rights than Locke who confined himself to life liberty and property.
Locke, for his inalienable rights, relied on two factors, the existence of god and a concept of a social contract. He relied on god to bestow what he termed natural rights and he relied on the concept of a social contract to explain why people obeyed a sovereign. The Universal Declaration of Human Rights is not based on the rights being bestowed by god, but it says the rights are inalienable. The document does not explain why the rights are inalienable but it seems, the same as Locke, the authors presumed the rights are bestowed at birth. Article 1 seems to confirm this presumption. Although Locke used the concept of a social contract to incorporate his three rights into the local law, the United Nations can claim no such contract. The United Nations as a collective is composed of separate sovereign states and apart from treaty obligations the United Nations can’t impose its concept of human rights on member nations. Even if human rights don’t exist outside their own legal boundaries, within a country they can be found to exist by virtue of the domestic law. In other words, in Australia, we can rely on the existence of some human rights because our legal system gives it to us. This notion of rights accruing because of society not because the rights have a separate existence is the position of many modern philosophers such as Jeremy Bentham (reputed to be the founder of utilitarianism).
The problem for the United Nations is that the nations are not necessarily united and certainly not united in their approach to human rights. Also the 30 articles are just assertions and have no legal force until adopted by each nation who wishes to be bound by it.
One test for the universality of human rights is to see how human rights declarations in the past have stopped abuses and atrocities. The modern history of human rights declarations can be traced back to the United States Declaration of Independence in 1776. This declaration stated that, “ all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain inalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness.” IN CONGRESS, JULY 4, 1776 The unanimous Declaration of the thirteen united States of America
In 1789 the French adopted what is called the Declaration of the Rights of Man and the Citizen.. “The French people, convinced that forgetfulness and contempts of the natural rights of man are the sole causes of the miseries of the world, have resolved to set forth in a solemn declaration these sacred and inalienable rights,” http://columbia.edu/~iw6/docs/dec1793.html
Prior to World War One, apart from the Red Cross and the Geneva Conventions there was little or no attempt to codify and protect human rights. After the first world war the League of Nations Charter contained some references to human rights. After World War One the League of Nations was established in 1919 its charter contained human rights.
...[“Intellectual Property Rights and Student Plagiarism, and the Impact of the Cyberspace Era”]
Antonio Morales Cuquerella
A quick Google search of the words “write my essay for me” provides the searcher with over sixty-eight million results. Sixty-eight million options for a student to not have to write their paper. Sixty-eight millions options for a student to essentially pay their way through an essay. If those numbers aren’t scary enough, many people do not realize the extent of copyright laws and so those students or individuals who are just “borrowing” sentences and expressed ideas from other authors are inherently plagiarizing. The world has changed a lot in the last 20 years, to the extent where we now have a global interface that can tell us stories, facts, show us movies, television shows, music, and introduce us to ideas and thoughts in literally the blink of an eye. The internet has been one of the most important and influential ideas, inventions, revolutions, whatever someone choose to call it etc, of human kind’s history. It can also be one of the most dangerous and destructive inventions of recent years, especially in how parents raise their children. In today’s world, where everything the Internet rules over everything, especially in the lives of the younger generations, what are the new implications of intellectual property rights, of plagiarism, and how do we protect authors’ works and prevent...
...States does not follow this document, which means that the United States does not respect; and I can think of other nations and peoples who do not follow the declaration as well, right off the top of my head. If the answer to those questions id yes, then I do believe that every nation, including the United States should have to follow it. However, that does not seem to be the case. So therefore, I do not think that any nation should scrutinize or punish another nation for not following the document if that nation does not as well. Furthermore, I think that if all, or most nations, do not follow the Universal Declaration of Human Rights then it was a pretty big waste of time and energy making it and since not respected it should become null and void, and just another piece of failed history.
First I am going to write about the Declaration in general; it’s history and what it consists of. The declaration was created and adopted in 1948. It arouse from the Second World War where people of the Jewish community were subject to very intense and tragic discrimination. The United Nations General Assembly had created it. The declaration includes thirty articles that are supposed to protect and identify the rights and liberties of each and every human life on this planet. On December 10, 1948 the Universal Declaration had been voted on. Forty eight nations voted in favor of it and eight nations refrained from...
...Are Human RightsUniversal?
The doctrine of human rights is one of the main topics that were created to protect every single human regardless of race, gender, sex, nationality, sexual orientation and other differences. It based on human dignity and that no one can take this away from another human being. It is that every ‘man’ has the inalienable rights for equality, but is this true? Are human rightuniversal? Whether human rights are universal has been greatly debated for decades. There have been individuals and even countries that oppose the idea that human rights are for everybody. This argument shall be investigated in this essay, by: exploring definitions and history on human rights, debating on whether it is universal while providing examples and background information while supporting my hypothesis that human rights should be based on particular cultural values and finally drawing a conclusion..
A general definition of human rights are that they are rights and freedoms to which all humans are entitled to, simply because there human. It is the idea that ‘all human beings are born free and equal in dignity and rights. They are endowed with reason and conscience and should act towards one another in a spirit of brotherhood.’ The thought that human...
...The Universal Declaration of Human Rights is the first global human rights treaty that was formulated. The main driving force behind the formation of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights was the Second World War, which in it course saw some of the worst human atrocities being committed on a global scale. The Declaration was adopted by the United Nations General Assembly on the 10th of December 1948.
The term "soft law" refers to legal instruments which do not have any legally binding force, or whose binding force is somewhat "weaker" than the binding force of traditional law. These are generally, instruments that are not treaties that oblige the stakeholders to follow them, but they have within them ‘norms’ that are believed to b good and therefore need universal application.
The Universal Declaration of Human Rights is also officially termed as a soft law since it was passed by the UN General Assembly as a Declaration and within itself has not given any means where the stakeholders are legally bound to abide by the articles or to enforce them. The preamble of the declaration says that the UDHR is “a common standard of achievement for all peoples and all nations” and the nations must themselves strive to achieve this standard.
While not a treaty itself, the Declaration was openly adopted for the purpose of defining the meaning of the words...
...Are human rights innate and universal?
Living Human Rights
Post WWII on the 10 December 1948, the Universal Declaration of Human Rights (UDHR) was espoused by the General Assembly of the United Nations in order to agree on the notion that such atrocities that occurred throughout the Great War and the Second World War would not ever be reciprocated. The document that was drawn up in less than two years by the UN and Western states, and although ambitious it would guarantee a premise for life and living for every individual all over the world. The UDHR are founded on nobility, equality and reverence, and are said to be aimed at all cultures and religions within the West and East of the globe. However there is great discrepancy regarding the justification and practicality of human rights all over the world due to political, economic and cultural differences and limitations. Universal means that ‘something’ affects, applies or is completed by everyone all over the world – there is no distinctive bias shown and equal policies are applied. Innate, in relation to human rights, means that people are given natural rights purely based on the fact that he/she is human and alive. Therefore, are human rightsuniversal and innate or is the Universal Declaration of Human Rights and the United Nations an...
...The Creation of the
Universal Declaration of Human Rights
Though human rights as a whole (or for most of history, the idea of human rights) have been present since the beginnings of civilization, its prevalence as a “normal” and “obvious” component of international relations did not emerge until much recently, with the ratification of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights (UDHR) in 1948. TheUniversal Declaration of Human Rights was created by the United Nations in order for all people in all nations to recognize each individual’s humanity, and the equal rights that are given to them on the basis of that humanity. As the UDHR’s preamble articulates, the Document aims for the “recognition of inherent dignity and of the equal and inalienable rights of all members of the human family”, grounded by the “foundation of freedom, justice, and peace”. 1 In other words, no human is excluded from possession of human rights; regardless of age, sex, gender, ethnicity, religion, or class, so long as one is a member of the human race, they are inherently entitled to the rights listed in the UDHR.
Today, the UDHR, legitimized by the United Nations in 1948, is widely regarded as one of the most important documents of the twentieth century. The UDHR was drafted following the footsteps of previous international human...
...The concept of Universal Human Rights is a fairly new conception in human history. Rights are not the same thing as social or cultural norms, which can be used to oppress minority interest and be fundamentally unfair to individuals. The beginnings of this concept can be traced back to the Enlightenment Era of the mid 17th through the 18th century. The formal international consensus of this idea did not take effect until after World War II, when the United Nations (U.N.) adapted the Universal Declaration of Human Rights (UDHR) on December 10, 1948 establishing an international standard of human rights. Although the majority of member nations of the U.N. agreed on this resolution, there where nations that argued against it. Thus the question still persist today, Are human rightsuniversal? I believe that they are.
Humans use morals and ethics to determine “right” from “wrong” on an individual as well as a cultural basis. An individual belief of right and wrong is derived from life long experiences; and influenced by culture, religion, parents, schools, relationships, etc. Cultural beliefs of right and wrong are a consensus of those beliefs in a nation or region, which can, and do vary widely between different cultures. These concepts also vary over time periods, influenced by new technologies, new...
...Human Rights in China are Right around the Corner
As the only one country that combines Communist politics and capitalism economy, approximately all topics related to China spontaneously arouse debates. Nowadays media from western countries are particularly interested in the progress of human rights in China, which is also what I want to explore. I prefer to focus on the freedom of speech. Do we Chinese have real freedom of speech and how has it developed compared to the past?
Recently, an artist whose name is Ai Weiwei caught attention and made the front pages of mainstream newspapers. Now it is not because of Ai’s outstanding painting or architectural skills or tour exhibitions around the world or even how much he earned through his artworks’ auction, but because after 81 days’ detention in Beijing, he was released and asked to pay about 2.4 million dollars within fifteen days for tax evasion, otherwise he could not escape the accusation from the Supreme Court and leading to be imprisoned completely.
This huge fee astonished many people and also made people think of some potential political reasons, because firstly, Ai is the person who is always disagreeing with policies and words of the Communist party. Additionally, Ai is the first one in Chinese history to have personal art shows abroad and he is also the Chinese consultant of the 2008 Olympic stadium, so his social statue cannot be easily ignored. In fact, according...