Wednesday, June 29, 2005

On human rights, Part XIII: end run

Okay, so the end is totally nigh.
Article 28.

Everyone is entitled to a social and international order in which the rights and freedoms set forth in this Declaration can be fully realized.

Article 29.

(1) Everyone has duties to the community in which alone the free and full development of his personality is possible.

(2) In the exercise of his rights and freedoms, everyone shall be subject only to such limitations as are determined by law solely for the purpose of securing due recognition and respect for the rights and freedoms of others and of meeting the just requirements of morality, public order and the general welfare in a democratic society.

(3) These rights and freedoms may in no case be exercised contrary to the purposes and principles of the United Nations.

Article 30.

Nothing in this Declaration may be interpreted as implying for any State, group or person any right to engage in any activity or to perform any act aimed at the destruction of any of the rights and freedoms set forth herein.

But what does this mean for me?

This seems kind of tautological - everyone has the right to their rights. But it makes sense. Not only does everyone have certain rights, but among those rights is the right not to get sweated by the authorities when you try to exercise your rights. And Article 29 makes an especially important distinction - rights can be limited, but only in the interest of securing others' rights. My right to swing my fist ends at the tip of your nose, my right to practice my religion ends at the beginning of yours, and now it's all on paper.

Just answer the question already.

It means that everyone has the right to a just world. Life isn't fair, like my mama always said, but justice is something we can all get behind.

Part I: The Preamble; Part II: Articles 1 and 2; Part III: Articles 3 and 4; Part IV: Articles 5 and 6; Part V: Articles 7 and 8; Part VI: Articles 9 and 10; Part VII: Articles 11 and 12; Part VIII: Articles 13, 14 and 15; Part IX: Articles 16, 17 and 18; Part X: Articles 19, 20 and 21; Part XI: Articles 22, 23 and 24; Part XII: Articles 25, 26 and 27

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