Human Rights- The Story - Antitheist
So if people have the right to food and shelter, why are 16 000 children dying EVERYDAY, one every FIVE seconds. If people have freedom of speech, why are thousands in prison for speaking their minds? If people have the right to education, why are over a billion adults unable to read? If slavery has truly been abolished, why are 27 million people still enslaved today, more than twice as many as in 1800.
The fact is when the universal declaration of human rights was signed it did not have the force of law, it was optional. And despite many more documents, conventions, treaties and law, it's still little more than words on a page.
So the question is, who will make those words a reality? When Dr King marched for racial equality, he was marching for rights that had been guaranteed by the United nations for nearly two decades, but still he marched. When Nelson Mandella stood up for social justice in the 1990's his country had already agreed to abolish such discrimination for 40 years, but still he fought.
Those who fight today against torture, poverty and discrimination are not giants or superheroes, they're people, kids, mothers, fathers, teachers, free thinking individuals who refuse to be silent and realise human rights are not a history lesson, they're not words on a page, they're not speeches or commercials, or PR campaigns, they're the choices we make everyday as human beings, the responsibilities we all share, to respect each other, help each other, and to protect those in need.
As Eleanor Roosevelt said, where do human rights begin? In small places close to home, so close, so small, they cannot be seen on any maps of the world, yet they are the world of the individual person, the neighborhood he lives in, the school or college he attends, the factory, farm or office where he works, such are the places that every man, woman and child seeks equal justice, equal opportunity, equal dignity without discrimination.
Unless these rights have meaning THERE, they have little meaning anywhere.