As human beings, our foundation of living a happy life is to live it free. Our human rights, as well as our different individual personalities, prompt us to choose our religion, to speak without restriction, to get educated, and live wherever and with whoever we want. The idea of a free life lived with equality is the base of all the human rights of the world. However, human rights still seem more of a dream than a reality.
Human rights are rights inherent to all human beings, regardless of race, sex, nationality, ethnicity, language, religion, or social status. Everyone is entitled to these rights, without discrimination. International human rights law lays down the obligations of Governments to act in certain ways or to refrain from certain acts, to promote and protect human rights and fundamental freedoms of individuals or groups.
There are a variety of human rights in the world:
- Civil rights (such as the rights to life, liberty, and security),
- Political rights (like rights to the protection of the law and equality before the law),
- Economic rights (including rights to work, to own property, and to receive equal pay),
- Social rights (like rights to education and consenting marriages),
- Cultural rights (including the right to freely participate in their cultural community), and
- Collective rights (like the right to self-determination).
Jim McGovern, who represents the Massachusetts Second Congressional District covering most of Central Massachusetts, spoke to about 70 people Friday afternoon in the Northeastern University’s School of Law Dockser Hall and was commended for his commitment to the issues of human rights where he emphasised on including human rights as a parameter in the formation of every law in the United States.
According to the 2018 Global Slavery Index Report, over 40,300,000 men, women, and children living in 167 countries are victims of modern slavery. They are bought and sold in public markets, forced to marry against their will, pushed into prostitution, and provide labour under the disguise of marriage. They are forced to work on construction sites, or in homes as maids and servants. Labour extracted through force, coercion, or threats produces some of the food we eat, the clothes we wear, and the footballs we kick. This is modern slavery and a violation of the human rights of millions of people all over the world.
Amnesty International’s 2009 World Report says that individuals are tortured and abused in at least 81 countries, face unfair trials in at least 54 countries, and have no access to freedom of expression in at least 77 countries. One of the most crucial human rights is our right to ‘live free’ which has been violated by countries to assert their power and dominance in other countries in times of war. An estimated 6,500 people were killed in the year 2007 in armed conflict in Afghanistan where nearly half of the population was non-combatant civilians who died at the hands of insurgents.
In a world where cruelty and violence based on religion, caste, gender, and race is widely prevalent, these parameters are the point where gender inequality and human rights violation meet. When a woman gets less pay than her male counterparts at a particular job, it is gender inequality as well as the violation of her basic human right to earn fair pay.
Therefore, human rights violation is our current reality where just our modern thinking won’t work. For these things to change, people will have to work to improve the economic conditions of their country. Things such as poverty and corruption force people to bow down and get trapped to earn their livelihood and sell themselves to feed their families. Thus, the reasons are endless and people are losing their identities for mere survival rather than productive living, which kills their spirits. Human rights are still a dream rather than the reality which people expect in times of modern thinking and economic development.