Today marks the beginning of the 70th year of the UN’s Universal Declaration of Human Rights and Human Rights Day, a day established to bring awareness to human rights issues around the world. It was a cause championed by many, among them Eleanor Roosevelt.
The day seems to be striking a particular chord this year as the “us vs. them” mentality continues to take center stage, a sentiment that is the absolute antithesis of today’s cause. And while I honestly believe that most people don’t see the world that way, the fact that we’re being forced to hear this bigotted perspective promoted day in and day out is absolutely exhausting. So I hope today serves as a reminder for us all.
It feels particularly appropriate to remember this great lady’s incredible contributions today as women (along with many other forgotten people) continue to be included in the ongoing chorus of “(fill in a group of people here)’s rights are human rights.”
I support the sentiment wholeheartedly, but the fact that we have to call each and every one out is a little depressing, seeing as, at the end of the day, human rights are human rights. It should be a simple enough thing to remember. When we’re splitting hairs over who counts as “human” it’s time to question what we’re fighting for.
So, this human rights day, it’s simple, every human is entitled to certain unalienable rights. It should be easy enough to remember, it’s a founding principle of our country, one that I hope we not only wish for ourselves, but for all of the world’s people.