Three of the most fundamental rights that people are entitled to are laid out in Article 3 of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, which states that “Everyone has the right to life, liberty and security of person” (UDHR, 1948). In this piece, that is sadly far too short to truly be fit for purpose, I would like to explore what happens when two of those rights conflict – namely, the right to life and the right to liberty – and I believe there is nowhere that this debate is so often had than in the context of whether abortion is an ethical choice that all women should be entitled to, or the committing of countless murders that we should condemn as morally unacceptable.
This week, THWBlog carries on its guest writer series with a piece from undergraduate and very good friend of mine, James Stopa-Hunt. A very opinionated man, writing about a controversial topic suggests this article certainly won’t be one to miss! Below is James’ introduction to our readers, as well as providing details through which you can contact him with any queries about his upcoming article. Alternatively, you can contact him through the blog and on Facebook. I hope you’re all looking forward to the article as much as I am!
Since the Conservatives won a majority in the most recent election, the party’s policies have provided much to ponder and potentially fear for those supporting a strong upholding of human rights in the UK. With Michael Gove currently working out how to scrap the Human Rights Act, we face the possibility that the application of human rights in the UK could diminish quite severely. Not only will we lose the check and balance of the European Court of Human Rights (using them as an advisory body instead), but also the current plans for the British Bill of Rights deviate from the basic foundations of human rights (that they should apply equally to all), by for example removing their application to convicted migrants.
Fionn has uploaded a supplementary article answering some questions about his recent article on The Human Writes Blog
Recently I posted the following article on The Human Writes blog:
The purpose of this post is to address some questions which people have asked me about what I said in that article.
Although I continue to maintain that the argument in the Human Writes post is sound and the conclusion (that we should reject nationalism) is correct, its subject matter is very tricky. For the sake of brevity, I had to bypass some difficult debates in that post. But I am keen to explore the issues further, and if any reader has other questions or criticisms on this subject, I will be happy to address them at length.
The question which I have been asked is: what about cases where nationalism functions or could function as a means of liberating oppressed people, e.g. victims of colonization, the Palestinians, etc. ?
This amounts to an objection to the argument…
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What nationalists all have in common is the belief that the nation must have its own state; a nation-state. Some extreme nationalists assert that their own nation is superior to others and should have priority over others. Moderate nationalists do not go that far, but they do still express loyalty to their own nation-state and, sometimes, to the rights of other nation-states as well. An example of a statement expressing loyalty to one’s nation is “we should look after our own people first”, one which I have heard more than one person express recently when giving their opinions on the current refugee crisis. Typically, this is not just a social sentiment but a political one: it means that the nationalist also thinks that their nation-state’s policies should give priority to the people of its own nation.
This week will be the first post on THWBlog from a guest writer. I am currently organising a number of posts in the near future from people who will offer perhaps slightly different perspectives and concentrate on a wider scope of areas, so hopefully you have a greater choice of articles to read! This is an exciting addition to the blog for me and I hope you enjoy it too. The first guest post will be posted on Friday, but in the meantime, here is a small introduction to the first of the writers in this series; a very good friend of mine called Fionn:
A number of articles have been written in the past week or so regarding the falseness in calling the current influx of people into Europe, the “Migrant Crisis”. #MigrantCrisis has been an almost constant trend on Twitter for months now, until it was correctly pointed out that these people are not migrants, they are refugees. Simply, a migrant is “a person who moves from one place to another in order to find work or better living conditions”. A refugee, on the other hand, is a person who has “been forced to leave their country in order to escape war, persecution, or natural disaster”. This has prompted a change for some, to instead identify this as the #RefugeeCrisis (although it should be noted some are still calling these people migrants).