Short essay on Politics and Politicians Shikha Advertisements: He and his equally famous disciple Plato strongly denounced politics. Plato went so far as to say: There is politics everywhere, in government generally, in the administration, in schools, colleges, universities, art, literature, and even in sports and games.
The Rights of Man. The middle and late 19th century saw a number of issues take center stage, many of them issues we in the late 20th century would consider human rights issues. They included slavery, serfdom, brutal working conditions, starvation wages, child labor, and, in the Americas, the "Indian Problem", as it was known at the time.
In the United States, a bloody war over slavery came close to destroying a country founded only eighty years earlier on the premise that, "all men are created equal. Neither the emancipated American slaves nor the freed Russian serfs saw any real degree of freedom or basic rights for many more decades, however.
For the last part of the nineteenth and first half of the twentieth century, though, human rights activism remained largely tied to political and religious groups and beliefs. Many people, disgusted with the actions of governments in power, first got involved with revolutionary groups because of this.
The governments then pointed at bombings, strike-related violence, and growth in violent crime and social disorder as reasons why a stern approach toward dissent was necessary. Neither group had any credibility with the other and most had little or no credibility with uninvolved citizens, because their concerns were generally political, not humanitarian.
Politically partisan protests often just encouraged more oppression, and uninvolved citizens who got caught in the crossfire usually cursed both sides and made no effort to listen to the reasons given by either. Nonetheless many specific civil rights and human rights movements managed to affect profound social changes during this time.
Labor unions brought about laws granting workers the right to strike, establishing minimum work conditions, forbidding or regulating child labor, establishing a forty hour work week in the United States and many European countries, etc. National liberation movements in many countries succeeded in driving out colonial powers.
Movements by long-oppressed racial and religious minorities succeeded in many parts of the world, among them the U. In a group of lawyers, journalists, writers, and others, offended and frustrated by the sentencing of two Portugese college students to twenty years in prison for having raised their glasses in a toast to "freedom" in a bar, formed Appeal for Amnesty, The appeal told the stories of six "prisoners of conscience" from different countries and of different political and religious backgrounds, all jailed for peacefully expressing their political or religious beliefs, and called on governments everywhere to free such prisoners.
It set forth a simple plan of action, calling for strictly impartial, non-partisan appeals to be made on behalf of these prisoners and any who, like them, had been imprisoned for peacefully expressed beliefs.
The response to this appeal was larger than anyone had expected. The one-year appeal grew, was extended beyond the year, and Amnesty International and the modern human rights movement were both born. It was different from what preceeded it primarily in its explicit rejection of political ideology and partisanship, and its demand that governments everywhere, regardless of ideology, adhere to certain basic principles of human rights in their treatment of their citizens.
They were simply outraged that any government dared abuse, imprison, torture, and often kill human beings whose only crime was in believing differently from their government and saying so in public.
They naively, according to many detractors took to writing letters to governments and publicizing the plights of these people in hopes of persuading or embarrassing abusive governments into better behavior.
Like the early years of many movements, the early years of the modern human rights movement were rocky. The modern organization named Amnesty International gained the structure it has mostly by learning from mistakes. Early staff members operated with no oversight, and money was wasted.
This led to establishing strict financial accountability. Early staff members and volunteers got involved in partisan politics while working on human rights violations in their own countries. This led to the principle that AI members were not, as a matter of practice, asked or permitted to work on cases in their country.
Early campaigns failed because Amnesty was misinformed about certain prisoners. This led to the establishment of a formidable research section and the process of "adoption" of prisoners of conscience only after a thorough investigation phase.
The biggest lesson Amnesty learned, and for many the distinguishing feature of the organization, however, was to stick to what it knew and not go outside its mandate. A distinguished human rights researcher I know once said to me that, "Amnesty is an organization that does only one or two things, but does them extremely well.
While it will work to ensure a fair trial for all political prisoners, it does not adopt as prisoners of conscience anyone who has used or advocated violence for any reason.
It rarely provides statistical data on human rights abuses, and never compares the human rights records of one country with another. It sticks to work on behalf of individual prisoners, and work to abolish specific practices, such as torture and the death penalty.
A lot of people found this too restrictive. Many pro-democracy advocates were extremely upset when the organization dropped Nelson Mandela at the time a black South African anti-apartheid activist in jail on trumped-up murder charges from its list of adopted prisoners, because of his endorsing a violent struggle against apartheid.
Others were upset that Amnesty would not criticize any form of government, even one which like Soviet-style Communism, or Franco-style fascism appeared inherently abusive and incompatible with respect for basic human rights.John Locke (—) John Locke was among the most famous philosophers and political theorists of the 17 th century.
He is often regarded as the founder of a school of thought known as British Empiricism, and he made foundational contributions to modern theories of limited, liberal government.
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