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Human Rights and Politics Human Rights and Politics - Religious critique of human rights - Conservative/ Political critique - Social critique

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Political Science
POLS 1000
Martin Breaugh

• Human rights has become the ultimate principle of morality • They receive the unanimous support of all the global economies • Human rights are so imp. Today that those who would normal be critical of human rights ex. Conservatives, adhere to the notion of human rights and they actively support the extension of human rights • The humanity to surrounding human rights is rare • Behind a certain superficial diversity there is a moral sane-ness • We all actually believe in pretty much the same things and son the example of human rights • This unanimous support for human rights is a recent phenomenon • The notion of human rights was actually developed in the 17 and 18 hundreds • The ancient [Greeks] had no idea of human rights, the idea itself was foreign to ancient political thought • Medieval Europe did not have any idea of human rights • The notion itself will be officially proclaimed after the both American and French revolution, it will be politically developed after the French revolution • Both the American and the French revolution would actually put rights at the middle • As soon as they would be politically proclaimed they would become the focus of a sustained if not relentless critique of both conservative and socialist theorists • They will be attacked by both sides • And despite the fact that today everyone's in favour to human rights, such human rights should not be taken for granted the battle was hard and the ultimate victory might actually be fragile then it appears, as a matter a fact, it is only in the 1970s and the 1980s that human rights will be able to gather more support and even become and unchallenged and unchallengeable idea • 1970s and 1989s You will have political struggles against communist rule both in the Ussr and in eastern soviet block countries • Ussr -is not just Russia • DISSISDENTS: Citizens who decided to resist the autocratic rule of communism and they did so in the name of human rights • Dissidents will appeal to human rights and use human rights as a sort of intellectualism to human rights and this is an interesting strategy because traditionally you would oppose it by saying your in favour of another kind of regime; well the dissidents did not follow that route because if u follow that route you would easily fall into the enemies route • Instead of playing a game that would have played in the hands of the • Dissidents just systematically abused human rights • For them the systematic abuse of human rights actually testified to the profound illegitimacy TO SUCH regimes • Argument, the communist regime is illegitimate because they cant understand basic human rights; the reaction of such communist regimens is to throw them in jail • By throwing the dissidents in jail they are confirming their point • In addition, communist regimes did not declare themselves against human rights, that could have been one of the possible solutions, • But in 1975- the USSR notably signed the Helsinki that has clauses that human rights should be protected • The dissidents were the locals • Point : the recent fortune of human rights is directly linked to all of these courageous people who in the name of human rights opposed communism [dissidents] • Before the struggle of the dissidents, [before 70s and 80s] there were 3 types of groups that were against human rights • The opponents of human rights were quite influential, formulated religious, political and social critiques of human rights Religious critique of human rights • The catholic church • It is only in 1965 that the church will reverse its position in human rights and will come out in favour of human rights 1965.Vatican 2 [the second Vatican council] represents the modernization of human rights • Human rights are a fundamental component of human existence • The notion of human rights is grounded in the gospels and this is strong information, this is the church that had little times for human rights and they argue that human rights are a Christian idea. • Before 1965 the church was opposed to human rights • Why? • It was based upon the religious idea that the Truth is greater then freedom • It is more important to seek the truth then it is to express up freedom • 'human freedom from the church is fulfilled by improved the question of Truth' • It is our human rights, our less important than religious truth, we should believe and have faith instead of wanting to be free and wanting to exercise our human rights • And so the church will be very boring of the effects of human rights on individuals • It will be worried that human rights will pull individuals away from faith; away from the quest of truth • The church will actually oppose the rights of god to human rights • The church will tell us that we must naturally give priority to god and therefore subordinate human needs and human rights to the truth • Despite the 2nd Vatican council the church will favour the truth over the extension of rights • They will actually oppose the extension of certain rights [ex. Woman's right to abortion] • In the name of an objection moral approve the person will object. It will do on the grounds that were will be an objective moral rights • The churches opposition will be grounded in the truth Conservative/ Political critiquw • Born immediately after the French revolution - 1789 • We've looked at it before because its part of the development of conservative ideology • For conservative thinkers like Edmund Burke, the notion of human rights is metaphysical and abstract; is too detached from the concrete conditions and existence of humanity; worse when abstract human rights are put into practice they will actually become destructive Human rights are destructive because they state that we are all born • and remain free and equal in terms of rights • However, in very concrete terms at birth were not free and equal • Infect at birth we are already obligated and bound by different associations This means we are not in our concrete positions and decisions we are • not born free and equal • Were born into families; were part of communities; • It is precisely here that rights become destructive and it makes us believe that we are born free and equal By making us believe that were born free and equal, human rights will • participate in the destruction of these associations to which we are bound • The assertion of human rights [occurs 1789] so Burke's writing in 1790 is already worried that this assertion of human rights will transform society from something that is harmonious and united and will end up as a chaos and individuals ; and that they are not bound to other types of associatio
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