Everyone knows that so-called human rights exist, but not everybody knows what exactly it means. So we would like to acquaint you with what human rights are, with their main characteristics and with the basic human rights.
What are human rights?
Human rights are inalienable rights of every person, regardless of nationality, gender, ethnicity, color, religion, place of residence, language or any other sign. All people equally have human rights, eliminating all kinds of discrimination. The main human rights feature is that they are interdependent, interrelated and indivisible.
The law often fixes and guarantees the universal human rights in the form of pacts, general law principles, customary international law, and other international law sources. The fundamental freedoms and human rights are protected by the state. The international law of human rights imposes on the state obligation to implement activities to promote and protect human rights.
Universalism and inherence
The human rights universality principle forms the basis of the international law of human rights. This principle, which was first acquired special significance with the adoption of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights of 1948, became a permanent feature in a great number of international declarations, resolutions, and conventions relating to human rights. For example, in Vienna at the World Conference on Human Rights in 1993, it was noted that the promotion and protection of human rights and fundamental freedoms are the duty of the state; it does not depend on its political, economic and cultural system.
Each state has ratified at least one of the main pacts in the field of human rights. There is about 80% of states ratified at least four such pacts. This fact reflects the general consensus among the states in the relevant field, what imposes legal obligations on them, and affirms the principle of universality. Some of the basic standards of human rights are secured by customary international law.
Human rights are inalienable. Man can not be deprived of them, except in rare cases and in accordance with the law procedure. For example, if a person committed a crime, and the court admit his guilt, a person may be deprived of the right to freedom.
Interdependence and indivisibility
The human rights are a single unit, they are interrelated and interdependent. These characteristics are related to every human right. For instance, right to equality under the law, right to life, right to freedom of expression (these are political and civil rights); the social, cultural and economic rights are the following: the right to education, work, social security; there are also collective rights: the right to self-determination and development. Progress in the following of any right contributes to progress in the following of the other rights. Likewise, failure to comply with any right adversely affects the realization of other rights.
The principle of equality and non-discrimination
The principle of non-discrimination is a universal principle of international law on human rights. This principle is present in all major documents relating to human rights. It also is the main subject of different international conventions on human rights. For example, the Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Discrimination against Women, the Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Racial Discrimination and others.
The principle of non-discrimination applies to every person and covers all human rights and freedoms, avoiding discrimination on any of the features, such as sex, race, color or any other trait. The principle of equality completes the non-discrimination principle. This principle “All human beings are born free and equal in dignity and rights” was established in the Universal Declaration of Human Rights (article 1).
Rights and duties
The recognition of human rights is not only a right for their implementation, but also the performance of certain obligations. According to the international law, states assume obligations to respect, protect and fulfill human rights. Respect for human rights implies the non-interference of the state in the exercise of human rights and refraining from restricting rights. Human rights obligation requires states to prevent violations. Implementation of human rights obliges the state to guarantee the smooth implementation of basic human rights. At the individual level, everyone should respect the rights of others.
Classification of the human rights
- Personal rights (right to life, personal dignity, the right to freedom and security).
- Political rights (freedom of speech and the media, right to information, right of association, the right to hold public events, the right to participate in government, right to appeal to the government, private property rights, labor freedom, the right to entrepreneurial activity, right to health and medical care, right to housing, right to social security, right to education).
- Economic Human Rights (right to private property, the right to inherit).
- Social human rights (right to social security, the right to housing, the right to health).
- Cultural Human Rights (right to education, access to cultural values, free participation in the cultural life of society, right to enjoy the benefits of scientific progress, right to the freedom of creativity in all spheres of human activity: literary, artistic, scientific, technical, etc., as well as the freedom of teaching. Intellectual property as a creative activity product is protected by law).
Basic human rights
- Recognition of human rights and freedoms as the supreme value, a person has them from birth.
- Implementation of human rights and freedoms without infringement of the rights and freedoms of others – equality of all before the court and the law.
- Equality of men and women.
- Priority of generally accepted international standards to the laws of a state.
- Strictly defined conditions that allow the restriction of the rights by the law.
- Prohibition of the use of the rights and freedoms for the forcible change of the constitutional order, incitement to racial, national or religious hatred for propaganda of violence and war.
Rights and freedoms
Human rights are the inalienable, indivisible, and material possibilities of the individual guaranteed by the state to possess and use specific benefits: social, economic, political, civil (personal) and cultural.
Freedoms of man are almost the same as human rights, with only some distinguishing features.
Providing freedom, the state makes the emphasis on the free, as much as possible independent self-determination of a person in some spheres of public life. It provides the freedom of the person primarily by non-interference of the country itself, and of all other social subjects. Consequently, freedom is the independence of social and political subjects, expressed in their abilities and capabilities to make their own choices and to act in accordance with their interests and goals.
The task of the state is not only to guarantee the human rights and freedoms, but also to minimize the adverse effects of its intervention in social and economic processes. This task is quite contradictory. On the one hand, the excessive activity of the state in its relations with civil society can lead to a significant narrowing of the range of rights and freedoms of citizens. The most extreme situation is totalitarianism, under which the freedom of individuals and groups is not available, almost all social relations are regulated by the state. On the other hand, reducing the number of state functions (and even the destruction of the state itself, as the anarchists propose) can lead to the loss of stability in political relations, conflicts and crises. That is why a balanced policy of both the state and other political actors is required.
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Human Rights are basically the rights that every person has by virtue of being a human being. These are protected as legal rights ranging from municipal to international law. Human rights are universal. This is to say that these are applicable everywhere and at every time.
Human rights are said to be a set of norms that portray certain standards of human behaviour. Protected as legal rights in municipal as well as international law, these rights are known to be incontrovertible fundamental rights that a person is entitled to just because he or she is a human being. Here are essays of varying lengths on Human Rights to help you with the topic in your exam.
Essay on Human Rights
Human Rights Essay 1 (200 words)
Human rights are a set of rights that are given to every human being regardless of his/her gender, caste, creed, religion, nation, location or economic status. These are said to be moral principles that illustrate certain standards of human behavior. Protected by law, these rights are applicable everywhere and at every time.
Basic human rights include the right to life, right to fair trial, right to remedy by competent tribunal, right to liberty and personal security, right to own property, right to education, right of peaceful assembly and association, right to marriage and family, right to nationality and freedom to change it, freedom of speech, freedom from discrimination, freedom from slavery, freedom of thought, conscience and religion, freedom of movement, right of opinion and information, right to adequate living standard and freedom from interference with privacy, family, home and correspondence.
While these rights are protected by law, many of these are still violated by people for different reasons. Some of these rights are even violated by the state. The United Nations committees have been formed in order to ensure that every individual enjoys these basic rights. Governments of different countries and many non-government organizations have also been formed to monitor and protect these rights.
Human Rights Essay 2 (300 words)
Human rights are norms that illustrate certain standards of human behaviour. These are fundamental rights to which every individual is inherently entitled just because he or she is a human being. These rights are protected by law. Here is a look at some of the basic human rights:
Every individual has the inherent right to live. Every human being has the right of not being killed by another person.
Every person has the right to fair trial by an impartial court. This includes the right to be heard within a reasonable time, right to public hearing and right to counsel.
- Freedom of Thought, Conscience and Religion
Every person has the freedom of thought and conscience. He/she also has the freedom to choose his/her religion and is also free to change it at any time.
Slavery and slave trade is prohibited. However, these are still practised illegally in some parts of the world.
Torture is prohibited under the international law. Every person has freedom from torture.
Other universal human rights include right to liberty and personal security, freedom of speech, right to remedy by competent tribunal, freedom from discrimination, right to nationality and freedom to change it, right to marriage and family, freedom of movement, right to own property, right to education, right of peaceful assembly and association, freedom from interference with privacy, family, home and correspondence, right to participate in government and in free elections, right of opinion and information, right to adequate living standard, right to social security and right to social order that articulates this document.
Though protected by law, many of these rights are violated by people and even by the state. However, many organizations have been formed to monitor the violation of human rights. These organizations take steps to protect these rights.
Human Rights Essay 3 (400 words)
Human rights are those rights that every person on this earth is entitled to merely on account of being a human being. These rights are universal and are protected by law. The idea of human rights and liberty has existed since centuries. However, it has evolved over the period of time. Here is a detailed look at the concept of human rights.
Universal Human Rights
Human rights include basic rights that are given to every human being regardless of his caste, creed, religion, gender or nationality. Here is a look at the universal human rights:
- Right to Life, Liberty and Personal Security
- Right to Equality
- Right to Remedy by Competent Tribunal
- Right to Recognition as a Person before law
- Freedom from Discrimination
- Freedom from Slavery
- Freedom from Torture
- Freedom from Arbitrary Arrest and Exile
- Right to be Considered Innocent until Proven Guilty
- Right to Fair Public Hearing
- Freedom of Movement
- Freedom from Interference with Privacy, Family, Home and Correspondence
- Right to Asylum in Other Countries from Persecution
- Right to Nationality and Freedom to Change it
- Right to Marriage and Family
- Right to Education
- Right to Own Property
- Right of Peaceful Assembly and Association
- Right to Participate in Government and in Free Elections
- Freedom of Belief and Religion
- Freedom of Opinion and Information
- Right to Adequate Living Standard
- Right to Participate in the Cultural Life of Community
- Right to Social Security
- Right to Desirable Work and to Join Trade Unions
- Right to Rest and Leisure
- Right to Social Order that Articulates this Document
- Freedom from State or Personal Interference in the Above Rights
Violation of Human Rights
Though human rights are protected by various laws, these are still violated by people, groups and even by the state at times. For instance, freedom from torture is often violated by the state during interrogations. Similarly, freedom from slavery is said to be a basic human right. However, slavery and slave trade is still carried out illegally. Many institutions have been formed to monitor human right abuses. Governments and certain non-government organizations also keep a check on these.
Every individual deserves to enjoy the basic human rights. At times, some of these rights are denied or abused by the state. Government is taking measures to monitor these abuses with help from certain non-government organizations.
Human Rights Essay 4 (500 words)
Human rights are said to be universal rights that every person is entitled to regardless of his/her gender, caste, creed, religion, culture, social/ economic status or location. These are norms that depict certain standards of human behaviour and are protected by law.
Basic Human Rights
Human rights have been divided into two broad categories. These are the civil and political rights, and the social rights that also include the economic and cultural rights. Here is a detailed look at the basic human rights given to every individual:
Every human being on earth has the right to live. Each individual has the right of not being killed by anyone and this right is protected by the law. However, this right is subject to issues such as death penalty, self defence, abortion, euthanasia and war.
Every human being has the right to speak freely and voice his opinions in public. However, this right comes with certain limitations such as obscenity, slur and crime provocation.
- Freedom of Thought, Conscience and Religion
Every state gives its citizens the right to think freely and form conscientious beliefs. An individual also has the right to follow any religion of his choice and change it as per his free will at any point in time.
Under this right every individual has the right to fair trial by impartial court, right to be heard within reasonable time, right to counsel, right to public hearing and right to interpretation.
As per the international law, every individual has the right to freedom from torture. This has been prohibited since the mid 20th century.
This means that every individual has the right to travel, live, work or study in any part of the state he resides in.
As per this right, slavery and slave trades are prohibited in every form. However, unfortunately these ill practices still go on illegally.
Violation of Human Rights
While every human being is entitled to human rights, these rights are often violated. The violation of these rights occurs when actions by state ignore, deny or abuse these rights.
The United Nations committees are set up to keep a check on human rights abuses. Many national institutions, non-governmental organizations and governments also monitor these to ensure that individuals are not denied of their basic rights.
These organizations work towards spreading awareness about the human rights so that people are well informed about the rights they have. They also protest against inhumane practices. These protests have led to calls for action many a times and eventually improved the situation.
Human rights are the basic rights given to every individual. Known to be universal, these rights are guarded by the law. However, unfortunately many a times these are violated by states, individuals or groups. It is almost inhuman to deprive a person of these basic rights. This is the reason why many organizations have been established to guard these rights.
Human Rights Essay 5 (600 words)
Human rights are said to be incontrovertible rights that every person on earth is entitled to just because he/ she is a human being. These rights are inherent in every human being irrespective of his/her gender, culture, religion, nation, location, caste, creed or economic status. The idea of human rights has been there for much of the human history. However, the concept differed in the earlier times. Here is a detailed look at this concept.
Classification of Human Rights
Human rights have broadly been classified into two categorizes at the international level: civil and political rights, and social rights that include economic and cultural rights.
- Civil and Political Rights
Also known as classic rights, these limit the government’s power in respect of actions impacting individual’s autonomy. It grants people the chance to contribute in the participation of government and determination of laws.
These rights direct the government to act in a positive and interventionist way in order to devise conditions required for human life and development. Government of each country is expected to ensure the well-being of all its citizens. Every individual has the right to social security.
Basic Human Rights
Here is a look at the basic human rights for every individual:
Every human being has the right to life. This right is protected by law. Every person is entitled to the right of not being killed by another person. This right is, however, subject to the issues of self defence, capital punishment, abortion, war and euthanasia. As per human rights activists, death penalty violates the right to life.
- Freedom of Thought, Conscience and Religion
Every individual has the freedom of thought and conscience. He/she can think freely and hold conscientious beliefs. A person also has the freedom to choose and change his religion at any point in time.
This means that a citizen of a state has the right to travel, reside, work or study in any part of that state. However, this should be within the respect for rights of others.
Torture is prohibited under the international law since the mid-20th century. Even though torture is considered to be immoral, organizations that monitor violation of human rights report that states use this extensively for interrogation and punishment. Many individuals and groups also inflict torture on others for different reasons.
Every individual has the right to fair trial by a competent and impartial court. This right also includes the right to be heard within reasonable time, right to public hearing, right to counsel and right to interpretation. This right has been defined in various regional and international human rights instruments.
As per this right, no one shall be held in slavery. Slavery and slave trades are said to be prohibited in all forms. However, despite this slave trade still goes on in many parts of the world. Many social groups are working to curb the issue.
Every individual has the right to speak freely and express his opinion. This is sometimes also referred to as the freedom of expression. However, this right is not given in absolute in any country. It is usually subject to certain limitations such as obscenity, defamation and provocation for violence or crime, etc.
Human Rights, the basic rights given to individuals on the account of them being human beings, are almost the same everywhere. Every country grants these rights irrespective of an individual’s caste, creed, colour, gender, culture and economic or social status. However, at times these are violated by individuals, groups or the state itself. So, people need to stay on their guard against any violation of human rights.
Human Rights day
Speech on Human Rights
Speech on Human Rights Day