The Rights Of Human Rights Essays

The Rights Of Human Rights Essays

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Human rights has become a universal promise that has been codified through United Nations treaties and in the legal systems of various nation states. As such, human rights has become a highly political manner, leaving the power of interpretation of what constitutes as ‘rights’ in the hands of the states, as well as who are able to gain access to these rights. The usage of the language of human rights by the state and other agencies reflects in the practical application of codified rights. Parallels will then be drawn between the interpretation of the rights to development to that of the interpretation of the state regarding rights that prohibit torture, as these suggest that speaking in the name of preserving the rights of many can tend to cast into silence the rights of the few.

The rights-based approach (RBA) becomes a primary tool in forming the guidelines for agencies in combating poverty, yet the reasons for poverty remain unaddressed. In placing the responsibility of implementing strategies to eradicate poverty to international bodies, the political and economic have overshadowed the social dilemma that demands to be resolved. While there is a movement from the declaration of rights to the actualisation of their enforcement, the burden of operation lies largely upon the economic sphere as resources too often have monetary value. There remains an essential interaction between the party states of the UN and multilateral agencies such as the World Bank. The ‘rights-based approach’ forms a distinctive label of the redistribution of resources such as water has become synonymous to “a system of tradable permits” that favours commercial users due to the profit made by the marketable system (Cornwall & Nyamu-Musembi, 2013: 1427). ...


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..., relies on the ‘stronger party’ — in this sense, the state — for a definition, and therefore a conviction if torture is indeed defined by the perpetrator as a crime. Society accepts it when it operates under the guise of being a shield for democracy, just as society accepts actions that seem to alleviate poverty but do not look too closely into what does not seem to be morally wrong.

Human rights promises universality and an equal treatment of all human beings, yet political, social and economic factors prevent this commitment from being realised. The interpretation of the language of human rights by each state appears to differ through the application of these ‘universal’ human rights. Rights-talk is utilised by the stronger speakers in order to create a smokescreen, protecting the inequality and injustice that occurs in order for the rights of many to be secured.

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