Matters of life and death

It’s the  60th annivesary of the UN Declaration of Human Rights this month (December 10th, to be precise).  Looking round the planet it seems that we still have a way to go to make a reality of the idea that  “equal and inalienable rights of all members of the human family is the foundation of freedom, justice and peace in the world”  Still, as the founders of Amnesty pointed out, it’s better to light a candle than curse the darkness. So here is a short list of no-effort-required ways to use the power of your internet connection to fight the good fight.  Now,  flex those social networks and pass it on:

Read the Declaration to see what it’s  all about;   join Amnesty – and support their greetings card campaign;  support Reprieve which fights against the death penalty; pick an issue which really makes your blood boil and find out more about it (personally, mine are Burma and Zimbabwe, so there are a couple of links for starters), and keep an eye on what’s happening at home too

Thanks.  Normal PR-based services will be resumed in the next post…


2 responses to “Matters of life and death

  1. In those early, heady, happy days of the Blair government, when Robin Cook talked of an ethical foreign policy and we still believed it might actually come to pass, the European Convention on Human Rights was finally passed into British law. The Conservative Government resisted repeated efforts from backbenchers from all parties for over 10 years.

    As I find myself frequently reminding people who complain about the damaging effect of “human rights” on British business, culture, morale etc since then, we (the British) wrote the damn thing. The ECHR was drafted principally by British lawyers in order to enshire the values of human rights, democracy and the rule of law to protect the future of Europe. The UK government over the years has a pretty shameful record of living up to its commitments and obligations, as shown in the article in today’s Guardian report the UK government supporting Austria’s “right” to object to same-sex civil partnerships, but it doesn’t alter the fact that the values of the Declarations on Human Rights are the fundamental values of the society we live in, formed and fought for over centuries. We should treasure them, for we deride them at our peril. As a wise old sage once remarked to me “Human rights – you don’t notice them when you’ve got them, but by God you miss them when you don’t.”

  2. sarahgillingwater

    Thanks Penny – certainly something worth thinking about.

    Have you seen that Amnesty are going viral to mark the anniversary?

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