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How to use Human Rights to assist in the mental well being of every Human.

Updated on July 22, 2013

A topic so dear to my heart

"Life's most persistent and urgent question is: 'What are you doing for others?"

Well I don't trade in slavery - Oh that's fantastic! Jolly well done! You are doing your part for Human Rights. Article ends.

Or is does it?

One of my favourite quotes is "Thou shalt not be a victim, thou shalt not be a perpetrator and most of all thou shalt not be a bystander." The source I found said this was on the Hollocaust Memorial in Washington D.C - Having never been there I am forced to believe them.

The quote challenges us not to be a bystander, its so hard to stop human trafficking, I can't help. Probably not, probably could. Maybe we can take the human rights a step further to ensure the mental wellbeing of all the human beings we meet.

As people we are far more than just a body. We are an intellect. We are a spirit. And probably more.

I want to draw your attention to a few of the articles in the UN Human Rights Charter.

HubMob graphic


The First Article of the UN Universal Declaration of Human Rights Charter

All human beings are born free and equal in dignity and rights. They are endowed with reason and conscience and should act towards one another in a spirit of brotherhood.
—Article 1 of the United Nations Universal Declaration of Human Rights (UDHR)[6]

Born Free:

Everyone is born free, nobody owns a person, a person who is born doesn't have a debt for existing.

Act in a Spirit of Brotherhood;

1. The state of being brothers or a brother. [1913 Webster]

I understand brothers to not always get along, to in fact annoy each other and fight. However when the chips are down, when somebody attacks their brother, they will band together and become a formidable opponent

2. An association for any purpose, as a society of monks; a fraternity. [1913 Webster]

As I understand, Monks have a similar belief system, about the world, how to live and what to do with their time. They try to put in to practice their beliefs.

A fraternity - I have had no tangible, real experience with a fraternity's but the ones I have seen through countless movies, seem to have an initiation, secrets and a bond that is not easily broken (also see brothers).

3. The whole body of persons engaged in the same business, -- especially those of the same profession; as, the legal or medical brotherhood. [1913 Webster]

These people do the same thing, studied the same thing, they have something in common, and would offer support to each other in a professional capacity.

4. Persons, and, poetically, things, of a like kind. [1913 Webster]

This definition seems very ambiguous. I think by now we all know, that we all bleed the same colour, we all feel pain the same, we all love the same, we all value similar things, we are all human - that makes us all of us as a like kind.

The Spirit of Brotherhood, I think is something that we don't grasp as strongly, in the sense of the fourth Webster’s definition.

From my own experience, even being part of an association for a purpose, with the teachings of that association largely centred on the analogy of family. For years we had built relationship, shared our lives, and spent our time with our brothers. That we lost in seconds - I would almost go as far to say that we never had a "Spirit of Brotherhood", even though it felt like one.

After that experience I decided that I would treat people with care to carefully show dignity and respect. Not to maliciously set out to hurt anybody. Or even by accident, I became so quick to say I am sorry, sincerely. I watched people and learned how to best treat them so that they would feel good about our interaction.

Don’t get me wrong, I am no saint, I don’t always get it right. My intention is to ensure that I don’t attribute to the emotional/mental devastation of another person. Even though I personally don't make the same choices as everybody else, I can respect who they are. I can hope for the best for them, I can see them as "Brothers."

To have rights implies that somewhere there is a responsibility; let’s try to foster a Spirit of Brotherhood. As Brothers, don't always get along, they will always be there for each other.

If you are willing to treat everyone with a Spirit of Brotherhood, then article two is definitely not in contention.

Article 2

Everyone is entitled to all the rights and freedoms set forth in this Declaration, without distinction of any kind , such as race, colour, sex, language, religion, political or other opinion, national or social origin, property, birth or other status. Furthermore, no distinction shall be made on the basis of the political, jurisdictional or international status of the country or territory to which a person belongs, whether it be independent, trust, non-self-governing or under any other limitation of sovereignty.

Our Spirit of Brotherhood will have no bounds, everyone is welcome in to the Brotherhood of the Human Race.

Article 3 Right to Life and Secuity of person

Article 3 (of the United Nations Declaration of Human Rights)

Everyone has the right to life , liberty and security of person .

With all the talk about legislating for Euthanasia I was really surprised to see this right here. While I believe in the right to life I don’t believe in prolonging someones life who is dying, as this hub puts it so beautifully. Death is a natural part of life, we do need to plan for it in someway, and provide the best level of care.

I worked briefly as a carer. One of the roles I performed was to stay up all night and tend to my client who was sleeping. The prognosis, was not good. The patient was lovely and chatty, despite their medical woes, there was no way this patient wanted to die, even though things were going to get worse.

While I had all night to contemplate my patients condition and worry at every irregularity, and hope that this night wasn’t the night my patient would pass. I would not like to see that. I would not like to experience that time when for the last time, that person breathes.

I thought about Euthanasia, and wondered how I would respond, if my patient didn’t want to continue living. If my client begged me to help them. How would I respond?

Contemplating these morbid thoughts – which is not uncommon for me to mull over the morbid thoughts. I knew I couldn’t. I couldn’t live with myself, and I had to continue living. Life is so sacred, I would do everything to help make them comfortable as possible within the things I am allowed to do in my limited role.

Working with this patient reminded me of the last time I saw my Nanna as she was dying. Nanna was such a strong lady, who called it as she saw it. I really admired and respected her. She was diagnosed with Ovarian cancer. It progressed. Complications occurred, and she was admitted to hospital. I wanted to see her, to say hi, and chat. Mum warned me that she wasn’t the same and that she was hooked up to machines, I insisted I see her. I lasted no longer than 5 seconds in that room. 5 seconds too long, I took in the whole scene, I wished I could have denied it and said I had walked in to the wrong room by mistake. The only fact that stopped me doing that, was that I knew the lady on the bed was my Nanna, even though her was unkept, her face drawn, her skin pale. The morphine drip running in to her arm. I burst in to tears and left the doorway where I had stopped dead in my tracks. I ran out the hospital. Mum said that Nanna still had good days, that was obviously not one of them.

Still if I was asked, I couldn’t end Nanna’s life, even though it looked like it was already over.

I think that this Human Right is essential, that things change when you take a life of person. There is an instant difference between the person before they take their last breath and when they have expelled it. Some people say that difference, you can see when the soul/spirit has left.

Secuirty of a person

The security of a person

The legal definition of Security of a person is : The legal and uninterrupted enjoyment by a man of his life, his body, his health and his reputation. 1 Bouv. Inst. n. 202.

A Law Dictionary, Adapted to the Constitution and Laws of the United States. By John Bouvier. Published 1856.

Now the wording man, I hope would be taken as in the general sense “human”.

When I was thinking of how to address the concept of Human Rights, I always wanted to write about how we should be safe in our own homes, to feel safe walking the street, to feel safe being ourselves. I would hope that fostering a spirit of brotherhood would allow us each to be able to walk unhindered in the streets, to not fear a break in. I do wonder, if the negativity in the news fosters this fear or if there really is a danger that a break in is mostly random acts, violating human rights? Although this is another topic altogether.

This human right goes that step further, to state that we have the right to “interrupted enjoyment”. our bodies, our health our reputations. Slander and libel are breaking the United Nation’s universal declaration of human rights, not only the law.

In essence, if this human right was practiced, we should be able to have a nap in a shady place with our wallet, personal music device and mobile phone in plain view without harm waking up up to a lack of belongings or worse.

Article 4: Against Slavery

Article 4 (of the United Nations Declaration of Human Rights)

No one shall be held in slavery or servitude;slavery and theslave trade shall be prohibited in all their forms.

Well if the third article addresses the security of a person, that is that person owns the right to their life, their body and reputation - why on earth would you have to specify - Do not trade in people. Sadly the case is that we do have to specify, because apart from some major companies, the slave trade is a disgustingly lucrative abomination.

Yes, you have the right to enjoyment of your body, and this includes all aspects, that is our right, Our responsibility is to ensure that the other person is freely enjoying their life, body and health. Don’t plead ignorance it is too important, its all of our human rights at stake.

The responsibility is to not hold somebody in slavery or servitude. Easily we can skip over this one and say that we aren’t. slave traders.

Have you ever thought about the things you say? Some days you say them with such flippancy – You certainly didn’t mean it. However the receiver of those words believed you did. When those words, include “you are stupid”, “you will never amount to anything”, “you’re a mistake” or any other devasting message. Could that be responsible for a prison? For slavery?

Generally it has to be somebody who has your respect, or who wants to have a relationship with, generally a child, a son or a daughter. Did you really just begin to their prison of self doubt? Self hate? Depression? Anxiety?

Where for years to come they will either believe you and act in such a way, not caring about themselves or anyone else; how can they? They are stupid? They can’t learn? They are a mistake.

Or they spend years trying to prove to you that they aren’t, but you never realise because the words had no meaning to you. You didn’t mean them. Why should everyone take you so seriously. So you never recognise there effort because this is exactly how they were supposed to grow up anyway. Its exactly the best intention you had for your child. They live in a prison of people pleasing and codependency.

People aren’t subjects in a computer game, where you can read their health, their level of resilience, their mental stability, their current challenges or the amount of damage you can inflict upon them.

We really need to treat each other with care. Humour is absolutely vital and should no way be taken away however we really should consider how and what we say. So that everybody enjoys the joke.

Life's most persistent question; "What are you doing for others?"

As you can see, and if you continue to read through the articles of human rights, you can see that if we get the concept of a Spirit of Brotherhood, Understand the right to the security of persons. We have a clear understanding of our responsibilities and what we should be doing for others. As you sit and think, as I have we have all broken United Nations declaration of Human Rights and have had them broken against us. We can always wait for other people to change, but we will die waiting as we have no control over what they do.

Let us start, let us practice Human Rights, and hope that other people ask us, and catch the vision of these human rights. Human rights that will make alot of people's wellbeing a whole lot better.

Treat each person with respect, dignity, and kindness. Think about making each interaction you have with a person, try to make it a positive one.


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