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Blog Action Day 2013 – Human Rights

Posted by on Oct 16, 2013

Today is Blog Action Day, an event that I’ve participated in a few times over the years and one that I’m having a say on once again this year. The only thing I won’t be doing this year is helping to promote the event on Twitter because by the time this posts I’ll be in a board meeting at a convention in New Orleans, hoping there will be something for me to eat.

Courtesy of

In previous years, the topics I participated on were poverty, food and the power of “we” on this blog, and also addressing poverty and food on my business blog. This year I’m only writing on this blog, and the subject is human rights.

This is a much different topic to address than in previous years because anything that personally touches me is more through anecdotal items than personal history. Even though I was born in the south in 1959, when Jim Crow laws were still in effect and outside of the military base my parents had to look for “colored” whenever they wanted water or a bathroom or places to eat but being young I don’t remember that. I don’t remember when my parents had to drive through some states or pull over to the side of the road to catch some sleep because there were hotels where black people weren’t allowed to stay. Sure, I had some incidences when I was a little younger of being pulled over without knowing why, but could I prove that my human rights had been violated? Nope, and I was never arrested and always allowed to move on.

Is there still racism? Absolutely, to the extent that even now in the 2010’s there have to be resolutions in Congress to extend the Voting Rights Act; are you kidding me? Also, there’s never been any movement in passing a rights bill for women and, oh, the commotion in passing one for gender rights. At least the government finally saw fit to pay for past discrimination against Asian Americans, black and Latino farmers, and some native American communities, but there’s still so far to go.

And yet, this isn’t an issue that only involves America. This past week we had the story of Malala, a Pakistani girl who only wanted to get an education and was shot by the Taliban for it because she’s female. We’ve heard stories of rapes and acid being thrown in the faces of young women for trying to learn; can you imagine?

We hear of stories of rape in countries like India and South Africa, and legal punishments against women in places like Saudi Arabia and many other countries too numerous too mention because men decide that women aren’t really people, per se, less than human, thus they get raped and then go to jail for enticing men; wow…

We hear of countries like Syria unleashing poisonous gas on its own citizens and are reminded that Slobodan Milošević did the same thing against his own people back in the 90’s and that Saddam Hussein also engaged in the practice. These days we know all the bad things the Taliban and Al Qaeda do against anyone who’s not them and doesn’t believe as they do, all in the name of “religion”; phooey! For that matter we might as well group the people in this country who hide behind religion to abuse and disavow rights to those who aren’t like them; just because they’re not carrying bombs around doesn’t give them a free pass.

Where I linked above when I mentioned human rights is what’s called the Universal Declaration Of Human Rights, which has 30 points of view that they’re calling articles that they believe should be incorporated by the United Nations to protect the human rights of people around the world. All of them are equally good, but for me #3 stands out, and it’s the one I’m closing this article on, and hope all of you believe as I do:

Everyone has the right to life, liberty and security of person.

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Hi Mitch,

A thought provoking story and a balanced approach to support that every human is actually a human. Racism is a curse existing in our society today, although not at a very high level but it does exists.

Crime against women seems to be a fashion today. The worst part is to see that women are also engaged in committing or at least helping people to commit crime against women. I have never ever understood why a woman behaves like an enemy to another women! Is it some psychological issue or just they want to create a better space for themselves.

I really feel sad about all this going around the world and it gets hard to figure out the path taken by us to evolve as a civilized society.

Thanks to you for picking up such an issue. Even I am on the way to launch a separate blog to talk and raise such burning issues that need the attention from all of us; so called civilized people.
Ashutosh Kasera recently posted…How Google Stole Yahoo Spotlight, Emerging as a Search Engine Leader ?My Profile

October 16th, 2013 | 10:34 AM

Thanks for your wonderful comment Ashutosh. You know, sometimes your worst enemy has things in common wtih you and one never knows their motivation for it other than fear or hoping to be accepted by the other side. It’s a sad state of affairs that in so many places around the world people need to subject others to inequality in order to feel good. By talking about it & bringing it out into the open, maybe we can help break down all those barriers to true human rights.

October 16th, 2013 | 8:26 PM

I am there on the site and have registered but have no idea what to do.
Aqiyl Aniys recently posted…Tough Mudder Completed But Disappointed – VideoMy Profile

October 16th, 2013 | 7:05 PM

Aqiyl, now you write a blog post & put it out on Twitter with the hashtag #BAD2013 and they’ll pick it up.

October 16th, 2013 | 8:22 PM

Hi Mitch, I have always admired your honesty and righteousness. It is sad but true that people today have to fight for the right to live. For a handful of anti-social elements who call themselves the protectors, the rest of the world is living in fear today.
Jeo recently posted…211 CanovaMy Profile

October 18th, 2013 | 6:06 AM

They sure do Jeo and that’s a shame. And yet, it’s way too easy to understand because it comes down to two things mainly; the need to be absolutely right even if you have to make it so and the fear that someone else will alter your way of living by being allowed to live their own lives.

October 19th, 2013 | 10:14 PM

I find the term ‘human rights’ a bit complex. Not because of semantics but because eof its use by our fellow humans. I often get confused about their actual meaning, I mean do they mean to protect the right of everyone in general or they are reserved for those alone who matter.

October 21st, 2013 | 1:42 AM

Harry, I don’t get confused at all. For me, it’s not as important how others view it as how each of us as individuals view it, and what we decide to do about it.

October 23rd, 2013 | 9:59 PM

Mitch totally inspiring. I totally agree with that bit on India; people saying women entice men. Ugghhh it is so insulting… I am going to stop by here more often.
Latha recently posted…Kids Birthday Party Games for 5 year oldsMy Profile

November 19th, 2013 | 6:39 AM

Thanks Latha. In the US we have a lot more people who believe that you don’t blame the victim for what happens to them, although it’s not across the board. This stuff just has to stop, but it’s not an easy effort I know.

November 19th, 2013 | 10:58 PM
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