The Essence of Human Rights : Part II

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Continuing with our previous post on human rights we look into some more aspects. Those who are unable to see people of other countries as human beings just like themselves are spiritually impoverished. They have no sound life philosophy. They do not ponder life’s most profound questions. They care only about their own petty concerns.

Our society is filled with people who are consumed by Hunger – at the mercy of unrestrained greed and Animality – picking on the weak and fawning on the strong. These negative tendencies are what have made it a society that discriminates and ignores human rights.

We are all human beings; that is what matters. There is a tendency to reject and attack anything that is the least bit different. That same closed-mindedness is globally present and which should be looked upon very closely.

The constitution guarantees respect for basic human rights, but there is still deeply entrenched structural discrimination that violates human rights. We have to raise people’s awareness of human rights through education. Our schools must teach human rights, our religions must teach human rights, and our government must respect human rights.

Unless we build a society that regards human beings not as a means to a goal but as the goal itself, we will remain forever a society of discrimination, unhappiness and inequality – a world of Animality where the strong prey upon the weak. We will simply repeat the patterns.

In addition, too much emphasis is put on grades. Students are treated as inferior human beings if their test scores aren’t good. Some teachers even take the attitude that students who can’t keep up have forfeited their rights. This is clearly a true form of violation of human rights. But the truth is that test scores measure only a tiny part of our worth as human beings.

Studying is important of course. But the real purpose of study is to enrich oneself as a human being and to make some valuable contribution that will benefit many people. Grades are just one way of measuring progress to that goal. If study ends up robbing people of their humanity, its purpose is completely destroyed. Test scores never tell us anything about what a person is really like.

The heart of a child does not discriminate. If parents don’t teach children to discriminate, babies of all skin colors play happily together. Little children aren’t the least bit interested in how well-off their playmates’ families are or what kind of work their parents do. They know that all human beings are equal.

The purpose of education is to nurture and solidify this spirit in young people. Only then this world will see the fruits of equality in the future.

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