Devoted to Democracy

Food for an oversold thought
Human Rights Reader 282

As a human rights activist, every day, I believe less in formal democracy.
-Democracy and Human Rights are interlinked and mutually supportive. (World Conference on HR)
-In human rights and in development work, dreaming is OK, but being naïf is not.
-To penalize China, Cuba or Vietnam, because they are not Western-type representative democracies unfoundedly puts their measurable achievements in doubt.
[Human rights and democracy go hand in hand like dignity goes hand in hand with free speech. One cannot find instances where human rights (HR) are respected in undemocratic societies; if these instances exist, we should speak about privileges-given-from-the-top rather than rights-acquired-by-social-struggle. This is why I devote this Reader to democracy].


Eyes-blurred, head-scratched, brain-drained.
Reading United Nations Human Rights treaties, covenants and documents is a health hazard if you are not a legal expert or inter-governmental groupie. Written in a language that very few in the world speak, and not many read, the vast majority of the people most in need of understanding their human rights can't easily do so. The UN could call this 'marginalization'. We call it wrong. If, as the UN Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights says, it's important that everyone knows their rights and claims them, then it's time to make the texts simple, short and shareable.

While the IMAXI Cooperative actively supports efforts to realise all human rights, we are focusing much of our efforts on the Right to Health and its clearly related rights such as water, sanitation, food, housing, gender, etc. (See 'About' to understand why.) So, IMAXI and some friends will soon be launching a Call to Write Your Rights for the Right to Health.

Syndicate content