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15.6: Resources and References

  • Page ID
    77191
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    Review

    Key Points

    • Calls for greater human security in a given situation are often based on claims that certain human rights are being neglected.
    • The legitimacy of such arguments depends on what generation of human rights are being invoked; first and second generation rights work well for this purpose.
    • Third generation human rights are not grantable and can therefore only be used to demand greater equity, not entitlements.
    • The strengthening of grantable human rights requires a functional civil society.
    • Liberation pedagogy represents a powerful tool for strengthening human rights and civil society under socio-political conditions that oppress people.

    .Extension Activities & Further Research

    1. What is civil society? Who is part of it? What is it good for? Explain with examples.
    2. The dilemma between rights and security can be addressed by weighing two opposing considerations: the extent to which human rights and liberties will have to be curtailed if the security is to be accomplished; and the extent that rights and liberties will be lost amidst anarchy, chaos, famine, disease and incessant warfare over diminishing resources, if security is not achieved (Homer-Dixon, 1999). Where do you stand in this debate? What assumptions, beliefs and values inform your position?
    3. In discussions around overpopulation, pro-natalist groups have emphasised, backed by considerable popular support, the ‘human right to reproduce.’ How do you assess this purported right in terms of its grantability? What ethical considerations apply in such an assessment?
    4. Human rights have been gradually accepted as a guiding universal moral norm that transcends cultural differences. This has culminated in the worldwide abolition of slavery in the 19th century, the proscriptions of cannibalism and infanticide, and other goals. Another innovation that human rights advocates are fighting for now is the proscription of the ritual mutilation of infants and children on religious or other cultural grounds. Opponents claim that such a sweeping measure would violate the rights of cultural groups to enact their treasured traditions. Where do you draw the line in this debate? What practices would you protect and what would you have outlawed? What are your distinctive criteria relating to human security?
    5. The gradual acceptance of human rights in Canada and other countries has been paralleled by the rise of numerous ‘humane’ societies for the protection of animal welfare. What do animal rights and human rights have in common? How can differences be justified, if at all? What other entities should also be imparted with rights, in your view?
    6. In British Columbia, human rights advocates focus on such issues as the plight of First Nations, refugees and other migrants, as well as the homeless. Choose one regional human rights issue relevant to your community and discuss to what extent the rights in question are grantable or ungrantable. How does this difference affect the ethical and political argumentation?

    List of Term

    See Glossary for full list of terms and definitions.

    • civil society
    • cultural relativism
    • cultural safety
    • grantability of a right
    • right

    Suggested Reading

    Alston, P., & Goodman, R. (2012). International human rights. Oxford University Press.

    Au, W. (Ed.). (2014). Rethinking multicultural education: Teaching for racial and cultural justice (2nd ed.). Rethinking Schools.

    Freire, P. (1972). Pedagogy of the oppressed. Penguin Books.

    Heble, A. (Ed.). (2017). Classroom action: Human rights, critical activism, and community-based education. University of Toronto Press.

    Lautensach, A. K. (2010). Environmental ethics for the future: Rethinking education to achieve sustainability. Lambert Academic Publishing.

    Potter, V. R. (1988). Global bioethics: Building on the Leopold legacy. Michigan State University Press.

    Rees, W. (2004). Waking the sleepwalkers: A human ecological perspective on prospects for achieving sustainability. In W. Chesworth, M. R. Moss, & V. G. Thomas (Eds.), The human ecological footprint (pp. 1–34). University of Guelph.

    Stromquist, G. (2015). Project of heart: Illuminating the hidden history of Indian residential schools in BC. British Columbia Teachers Federation (BCTF). https://bctf.ca/HiddenHistory/eBook.pdf

    References

    Alston, P., & Goodman, R. (2012). International human rights. Oxford University Press.

    Annan, K. (2005). In larger freedom: Towards development, security, and human rights for all – Executive summary. United Nations. https://www.ohchr.org/Documents/Publ...2005.Add.3.pdf

    Au, W. (Ed.). (2014). Rethinking multicultural education: Teaching for racial and cultural justice (2nd ed.). Rethinking Schools.

    Banks, J. A. (2001). An introduction to multicultural education (3rd ed.). Allyn & Bacon.

    Bowers, C. A. (1993). Education, cultural myths, and the ecological crisis: Toward deep changes. State University of New York Press.

    Chivian, E. S. (2001). Environment and health: 7. Species loss and ecosystem disruption — the implications for human health. Canadian Medical Association Journal, 164(1), 66–69. https://www.cmaj.ca/content/164/1/66

    Daly, H. E., & Cobb, J. B., Jr. (1994). For the common good: Redirecting the economy toward community, the environment, and a sustainable future (revised ed.). Beacon Press.

    Daw, T. M., Hicks, C. C., Brown, K., Chaigneau, T., Januchowski-Hartley, F. A., Cheung, W. W. L., Rosendo, S., Crona, B., Coulthard, S., Sandbrook, C., Perry, C., Bandeira, S., Muthiga, N. A., Schulte-Herbrüggen, B., Bosire, J., & McClanahan, T. R. (2016). Elasticity in ecosystem services: Exploring the variable relationship between ecosystems and human well-being. Ecology and Society, 21(2), Article 11. https://doi.org/10.5751/ES-08173-210211

    Deckers, J. (2011). Negative “GHIs,” the right to health protection, and future generations. Journal of Bioethical Inquiry, 8(2), Article 165. https://doi.org/10.1007/s11673-011-9295-1

    Freedom House. (2012). Worst of the worst 2012: The world’s most repressive societies. https://freedomhouse.org/sites/defau...l%20report.pdf

    Freedom House. (2018). Freedom in the world 2018. https://freedomhouse.org/sites/defau...SinglePage.pdf

    Freire, P. (1972). Pedagogy of the oppressed. Penguin Books.

    Freire, P. (1985). The politics of education: Culture, power, and liberation. Greenwood Publishing.

    Geertz, C. (1973). The interpretation of cultures. Basic Books.

    Haslam, P. A., Schafer, J., & Beaudet, P. (2009). Introduction to international development: Approaches, actors, and issues. Oxford University Press.

    Haviland, W. A. (1995). Cultural anthropology (8th ed.). Harcourt Brace College Publishers.

    Heble, A. (Ed.). (2017). Classroom action: Human rights, critical activism, and community-based education. University of Toronto Press.

    Jameton, A., & Pierce, J. (2001). Environment and health: 8. Sustainable health care and emerging ethical responsibilities. Canadian Medical Association Journal, 164(3), 365–369. https://www.cmaj.ca/content/164/3/365.full

    Jones, C. (1999). Global justice: Defending cosmopolitanism. Oxford University Press.

    Karr, J. R. (n.d.). Measuring biological condition, protecting biological integrity. Principles of Conservation Biology. http://sites.sinauer.com/groom/article23.html

    Karr, J. R. (1997). Bridging the gap between human and ecological health. Ecosystem Health, 3(4), 197–199. https://doi.org/10.1111/j.1526-0992.1997.00061.pp.x

    Lautensach, A. K. (2010). Environmental ethics for the future: Rethinking education to achieve sustainability. Lambert Academic Publishing.

    Lautensach, A. K. (2018). Migrants meet Europeans [Review of the book The strange death of Europe: Immigration, identity, Islam, by D. Murray]. Journal of Human Security, 14(1), 24–31. https://doi.org/10.12924/johs2018.14010024

    Lautensach, A. K., & Lautensach, S. W. (2011a). Prepare to be offended: Cultural safety inside and outside the classroom. International Journal of Arts & Sciences, 4(25), 183–194. https://www.academia.edu/1335239/Lau...l_4_25_183_194

    Lautensach, S. W., & Lautensach, A. K. (2011b). Irreconcilable differences? The tension between human security and human rights. In L. Westra, K. Bosselmann, & C. Soskolne (Eds.), Globalisation and ecological integrity in science and international law (pp. 272–285). Cambridge Scholars Publishing.

    McMichael, T. (2001). Human frontiers, environments and disease: Past patterns, uncertain futures. Cambridge University Press.

    National Inquiry into Missing and Murdered Indigenous Women and Girls. (2019). Reclaiming power and place: The final report of the national inquiry into missing and murdered Indigenous women and girls. https://www.mmiwg-ffada.ca/final-report/

    Office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights. (2003). Human rights and poverty reduction: A conceptual framework. https://www.ohchr.org/EN/Issues/Pove...uidelines.aspx

    OHCHR. (2010). Plan of action for the second phase (2010–2014) of the world programme for human rights education (A/HRC/15/28). https://www.ohchr.org/EN/Issues/Educ...ion(2010).aspx

    O’Neil, T. (Ed.). (2006). Human rights and poverty reduction: Realities, controversies and strategies. Overseas Development Institute. https://www.odi.org/publications/165...and-strategies

    Potter, V. R. (1988). Global bioethics: Building on the Leopold legacy. Michigan State University Press.

    Rawls, J. (1971). A theory of justice. Harvard University Press.

    Rees, W. (2004). Waking the sleepwalkers: A human ecological perspective on prospects for achieving sustainability. In W. Chesworth, M. R. Moss, & V. G. Thomas (Eds.), The human ecological footprint (pp. 1–34). University of Guelph.

    Ryan, M. (2016). Human value, environmental ethics and sustainability: The precautionary ecosystem health principle. Rowman & Littlefield.

    Sachs, J. D., & McArthur, J.W. (2005). The Millennium Project: A plan for meeting the Millennium Development Goals. The Lancet, 365(9456), 347–353. https://doi.org/10.1016/S0140-6736(05)17791-5

    Sachs, W. (2003). Environment and human rights. Wuppertal Institute for Climate, Environment, Energy. https://nbn-resolving.org/urn:nbn:de:bsz:wup4-18117

    Singer, P. (1975). Animal liberation: A new ethics for our treatment of animals. HarperCollins.

    Statista Research Department. (2020, August 11). Number of documented civilian deaths in the Iraq war from 2003 to July 2020. Statista. https://www.statista.com/statistics/...ar-since-2003/

    Stromquist, G. (2015). Project of heart: Illuminating the hidden history of Indian residential schools in BC. British Columbia Teachers Federation (BCTF). https://bctf.ca/HiddenHistory/eBook.pdf

    Trainer, T. (2016). Scrap the conventional model of Third World “development”. Mother Pelican, 12(12). http://www.pelicanweb.org/solisustv12n12page5.html (Reprinted from Scrap the conventional model of Third World ‘development,’ 2016, November 5, Resilience, https://www.resilience.org/stories/2...d-development/)

    United Nations. (n.d.). About the Sustainable Development Goals. https://www.un.org/sustainabledevelo...lopment-goals/

    UN. (n.d.). UN Millennium Development Goals. http://www.un.org/millenniumgoals/

    UN. (1948). Universal Declaration of Human Rights. https://www.un.org/en/universal-decl...hts/index.html

    UN. (2000). We the peoples: The role of the United Nations in the 21st century. https://www.un.org/en/events/pasteve...he_Peoples.pdf

    UN Development Programme. (1994). Human development report 1994: New dimensions of human security. http://hdr.undp.org/en/content/human...nt-report-1994

    UNDP. (2007). Human rights and the Millennium Development Goals: Making the link. https://gsdrc.org/document-library/h...king-the-link/

    Westra, L. (2005). Ecological integrity. In C. Mitcham (Ed.), Encyclopedia of Science, Technology, and Ethics (Vol. 2). Macmillan.

    Footnote 

    1. Speech given 1 August 1993 at Soochow University, Taiwan; published at http://www.mandela.gov.za/mandela_speeches/1993/930801_taiwan.htm (accessed 20 July 2019) 
    2. It is interesting to note how exclusively human rights are restricted to the human species, but include even the most incompetent and disabled individuals (such as newborns and comatose patients) while excluding even the most sentient members of other species (such as the great apes and cetaceans). This ‘speciesist’ distinction seems rather arbitrary and lacks logical justification (Singer, 1975) but is nevertheless implicitly accepted by most authors in the literature on rights, as well as by the public at large in many cultures.
    3. For example, a nationwide shortage of food might force a government to enforce a rationing system, as happened in WWII Europe. Such a system forces people with access to food, such as farmers, to deliver most of their produce to the state who distributes the food equitably as needed among the population. Transgressions, as by black marketers, are prosecuted and punished severely. Privileges are sacrificed and autonomy curtailed in order to maximise the common good and to minimise the effects of malnutrition. 
    4. Particularly revealing for those who know European history is the phrase “final solution” of the “Indian problem” in the summary of the legislation (Stromquist, 2015). 
    5. Popular excuses for historical human rights violations tend fall into the following three categories: “it wasn’t all that bad”; “others did it, too”; and “all perpetrators and victims are long deceased.” (Lautensach, 2018) 

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