What are Human Rights and Who Spoke of it First?

by keyvan

I am most grateful to the organization called www.YouthforHumanRights.org which is located in Los Angeles. This morning I received their beautiful package of information called Youth For Human Rights; unique tools that bring Human Rights to Life!

I agree, human rights need to be brought into life! For many, human rights is unknown, unclear, or plain irrelevant.

For those who do not know what are our human rights, I will give a brief historical background and then list a few of the basic human rights listed in the YouthforHumanRights.org booklet to support and acknowledge their contribution to the better understanding of human rights, especially children’s human rights.

Although humans have been around for millions of years and human civilization has seen many great teachers  yet it is interesting to note that the universal recognition of human rights is fairly new. The Universal Declaration of Human Rights was signed after the horrible tragedy of World War II in 1945. A number of victorious yet humbled nations came together and through the organization of the United Nations they created and signed the Universal Declaration of Human Rights to protect the basic God given rights of all human beings wherever they are.

The honor of initiating the recognition of human rights in history belongs to the Persian Emperor, Cyrus the Great. In 539 B.C., after conquering the city of Babylon, he did something quite unexpected and praiseworthy. He freed all slaves to return home. Moreover, he declared people should choose their own religion. The Cyrus Cylinder, a clay tablet containing his statement, is the first human rights declaration in history. As a Persian child I remember reading about it in school and feeling proud. But today I have a much greater appreciation for any one and any government who truly honors human rights of every one especially children’s human rights. It is tragic for all especially for Iranians to witness how the Islamic Republic Regime of Iran has been at the top of the list of the governments who are in violation of human rights.

The Baha’i families and in particular the Baha’i children and youth of Iran have suffered innumerable and irreconcilable losses as a result of what the Islamic Republic Regime of Iran has conspired against this peaceful religious minority for over 30 years. Indeed The Islamic republic Regime has proven itself unworthy of the noble and historic legacy of Emperor Cyrus the Great evidenced by the atrocities they commit against those who differ with them in their way of belief.

Today one of the main conditions of being civilized as a government and belonging to the community of civilized nations is the acceptance and integration of the Universal Human Rights into that country’s constitutions.

Today humanity has to open its eyes to a newer and much more forward looking charge declared by Baha’u’llah over 160 years ago. our charge is the recognition of the principle of the oneness of humanity. he taught; Ye are the flowers of one garden, the cells of one body, the waves of one see. These metaphors aught to teach us about how to treat one another.

Shoghi Effendi the Guardian of the Baha’i Faith has real strong statement for those who ignore the divine law of the organic oneness of all humanity and the grim consequence of its violation. He says: How pathetic are the efforts of those leaders of human institutions who, in utter disregard of the spirit of the age, are striving to adjust national processes, suited to the ancient days of self-contained nations, to an age which must either achieve the unity of the world, as adumbrated by Baha’u’llah or perish.” World order of Baha’u’llah p. 36

Some of the thirty human rights I like to mention are:

1-  The right to live in freedom and safety;

2-  The right to travel;

3-  The right to belong to a country;

4-  The right to own things and to share them;

5-  The right to believe what you want to believe;

6-  The the right to say what you think

For more information please visit www.YouthforHumanRights.org


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