Wikipedia describes “inalienable rights” as follows: “Inalienable (Individual) Rights are: natural rights, among these are life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness. They are the most fundamental set of human rights, natural means not-granted nor conditional. They are applicable only to humans, as the basic necessity of their survival”. wikipedia
The Universal Declaration of Human Rights (linked below) is pretty breathtaking reading. http://www.un.org/Overview/rights.html I wonder how many people are like me and have heard about it and never read it, until now. Wonder if those writing it thought it would help end genocide-that never again would the world have to figure out how to respond to the nightmare war and massacre and ethnic cleansing could become. Wonder if they could imagine that Rwanda, Bosnia, Darfur would happen anyway. Wonder if nations would still talk, instead of act. Wonder if they could imagine an illegal military dictatorship blocking aid to those suffering a disaster like Cyclone Nargis, hoping a natural disaster would finish what their disastrous policies had already been working on. Wonder what would happen if all of us everywhere held our governments to the standards set out in that document, not just as they apply to our countrymen and women, families, friends, religions or ethnic groups, but as the inalienable rights of all people everywhere? What if we lived, acted and voted, like human rights were for everyone?
One thought on “Certain Inalienable Rights….”
I read some pretty amazing pieces of writing and literature in college. But the UNDHR stood out as impressive. The writers had it together half a century ago – they knew the conditions for healthy human development. So where are we? Closer, certainly, to their vision, thanks to the Millenium Development Goals that although imperfect have made progress. But not close enough. I wonder often about the question you pose – what a different world that would be. If that isn’t something to advocate for, than I don’t think anything is.