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AFRO-NETS> Food for thought for friend and foe (6)
- Subject: AFRO-NETS> Food for thought for friend and foe (6)
- From: Claudio Schuftan <email@example.com>
- Date: Tue, 6 Mar 2001 10:45:39 -0500 (EST)
Food for thought for friend and foe (6)
THE ROLE OF HUMAN RIGHTS IN POLITICIZING DEVELOPMENT ETHICS,
DEVELOPMENT ASSISTANCE AND DEVELOPMENT PRAXIS
Human Rights in the era of Globalization:
35. I am convinced the Left/Right, Capitalist/Socialist ideological
divide is well and alive and kicking as the world's political pendu-
lum is desperately trying to regain its center (and maybe go beyond?)
after the free market ideology has been reigning supreme. (11, 12)
36. As under Colonialism, under Globalization we live under the rule
of "Might is Right" and, under the rule of that might, Human Rights
just fall between the cracks.
37. Globalization does not have a human face, it leads to the recolo-
nization of the whole planet. The term Globalization is a euphemism
for a process of domination. Power differentials are at its crux. We
cannot wish it away. [This fact reinforces the view that when econom-
ics ceases to strengthen social bonds it is time to start thinking in
38. But as opposed to people only having their Basic Needs taken care
of, people having Basic Rights makes it possible for Rights Holders
to legitimately claim the same. Additionally, the Human Rights ap-
proach imposes clear obligations on Duty Bearers (e.g., signatory
governments) that, by definition, must the met. (As the clich? goes,
a right exists only with a concomitant duty). Such obligations in-
clude respecting, protecting and fulfilling Human Rights provisions
they agreed to by becoming signatories. (13) And that is the breaking
point of the new paradigm: It strengthens our hand to act politi-
39. In the development context, what this means is that states have
the duty to improve the fair distribution of the benefits from devel-
opment. And we have to hold them accountable for it.
40. Not all forms of growth and development are Human Rights
friendly. Development has to demonstrably give protection to the most
vulnerable and impoverished in society to be Human Rights friendly.
41. The values we will now advocate for under the new Human Rights
discourse are thus underpinned by International Human Rights Law
that, in the future, needs to be incorporated into national laws --in
part through our future political struggle for this, and through our
action as watchdogs of their enforcement. Our Human Rights work
should, therefore, begin at home.
42. "The focus has now clearly shifted to the politico-legal links
between development and Human Rights" (G.H. Brundtland) keeping in
mind that in the Human Rights framework, the duty to fulfil the
rights --of children and women, for example-- does not depend on eco-
nomic justifications or excuses. (4)
43. Moreover, the Human Rights leverage should also be forcefully ap-
plied to contingent bilateral and multilateral diplomacy as a pre-
emptive move to prevent violent man-made disasters and their flagrant
Human Rights violations.
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