Week 1 Notes
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This 5 page Class Notes was uploaded by Savannah Harrington on Monday September 28, 2015. The Class Notes belongs to 352 at Illinois State University taught by Noha Shawki in Summer 2015. Since its upload, it has received 51 views. For similar materials see Human Rights in Political Science at Illinois State University.
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Date Created: 09/28/15
August 20 2015 Donnelly Chapter 1 Even from our perspective HR are such a fundamental part of our life and system but are actually pretty new relative to history Until the end of WWII human rights were not an issue in world politics and the Covenant of the League of Nations did not contain the words human rights the modern human rights movement started only after WWII although there were some earlier precursors o Minority rights 0 Ending the slave trade and slavery 0 After WWI workers rights and the ILO Int l Labor Org Reason for absence of HR from international relations prior to WWII sovereignty and nonintervention 0 State sovereignty made it difficult to address an international platform for HR 0 1648 established that nations are all quotsovereignquot and this led to a noninterventionquot mindset Over the past 7 decades transformation of sovereignty and the emergence of int l HR norms o WWII and the Holocaust during this time there was no int l law saying that other countries can step in if a country is needlessly slaughtering its people 0 The Charter of UN 1945 The Commission on HR 1946 Universal Declaration of HR 1948 Int l HR Covenants Covenant on Economic Social and Cultural Rights amp Covenant on Civil and Political Rights 1966 milestones in the process of articulating int l HR norms 0 We went from nothing to after WWII there was quite a lot of huge milestones for HR Monitoring and implementation of international HR 0 Monitoring and implementation have been fairly limited as international HR instruments create legal obligations for state parties but do not allow for int l enforcement because of state sovereignty I Monitoring limited to periodic reports and discussions and investigations of HR problems violations I Some bilateral action on HR issues since 1970s I Monitoring and lobbying by NGOs since 1970s I So UN can say Hey you are violating HRquot but they can t send in a team to enforce it The only entity that can implement HR are the countries themselves Growing momentum around int l HR in the 1980s and 1990s 0 Democratization in many countries and regions of the world 0 Intervention in Kosovo I Part of Serbia Population was minority Albanian The Serb gov t launched a campaign of ethnic cleansing so they wouldn t have to deal with minorities and minority rights 0 Creation of ad hoc int l criminal tribunals and of Int l Criminal Court ICC I Prosecute against War Crimes Crimes Against Humanity and Genocide I Started during the Rwanda genocide and Yugoslavia atrocity The Global Human Rights Regime 0 Very significant progress since 1940s we have a large body of int l HR law today 0 Despite limited monitoring and enforcement HR law matters I Burden of persuasion is on gov ts that violate HR I Denial of legitimacy to gov ts that violate HR Ex 2010 Nobel Peace Prize was awarded to a man in China He is an imprisoned Chinese HR activist Because he was peaceful in his fight he was selected to receive it The Chinese gov t did not release him and were upset The Noble committee still gave ceremony and gave medal to an empty chair Gov t also censored Internet posts and media showing the ceremony I HR no longer a purely domestic issue states IGOs and NGOs can legitimately raise HR concerns with other gov ts that violate HR I In what is ultimately a struggle of right against might agreedupon terms of moral and legal reference are of immense importancequot p15 0 Int l HR laweven if can t be enforced does matter Key Passages o Int l HR law has taken off the table debates over whether there really are HRs and what belongs on a list of HRsquot p 15 o Int l HR law has both armed HR advocates and disarmed their opponentsquot p 16 o It represents a fundamental redefinition of the terms of national and int l political legitimacyquot p 16 Sources of international law 0 Treaties contractual agreements between states to accept certain specified obligationsquot Box 12 p 9 I Drafting signing ratification entry into force I Party to the treatyquot are country who are apart of the treaty I Treaty is signed by President and ratified by US Senate 2 3 majority Once ratified it is then official 0 Custom wellestablished state practices to which a sense of obligation has come to be attachedquot p 9 I This started hundreds of years ago with the idea of don t kill the messengerquot So if the messenger took a letter from their gov t to another that gov t was to just take the message and not harm the messenger August 25 2015 Civil and political rights Typically the gov t just has to refrain or step back from something Typically freedom FROM things ex from arbitrary arrest etc Focus on liberty and freedom Social and economic rights Gov t has to be proactive Ex ensure everyone has healthcare food etc Focus on economic social and cultural issues Donnelly Chapter 2 Philosophies of Human Rights The inalienability of human rights Equality in the enjoyment of rights equal concern and respect Difference between something being right and someone having a right it is right to be nice and polite but if you are rude you are not violating a human right because you aren t breaking a human right 0 Having a right implies a special relationship between rightholder and duty bearer 0 Having a right implies entitlement 0 Having a right implies practices and institutions that guarantee enjoyment of the right 0 Human rights are moral rights that are invoked whenever and where they are not provided in national laws and practices the human rights language is used by individuals and groups to change laws and practices in a way that will protect their human rights International HRs are grounded in our shared humanity and inherent human dignity HR are not only about securing life survival they are about guaranteeing a life with dignity for all For this reason HR encompasses a lot more than rights to food physical integrity etc They are not meant to just life but to live with dignity and prosperity The human nature that is the source of HR is a moral account of human possibility It re ects what human beings might becomequot p 2 1 if all HRs were implemented Not everything that is good is a human right we do not have HRs to friendship talent beauty or charity but HRs are the minimum set of goods services opportunities and protections that are widely recognized today as essential prerequisites for a life of dignityquot p 26 HRs are interdependent and indivisible enjoyment of one set of rights require securing guaranteeing other rights All rights together make possible a life of dignity 0 According to Donnelly the distinction between negative and positive rights is not compelling do you agree Do you believe that economic social and cultural rights eg the rights to food education and work are as important as civil and political rights eg freedoms of speech association and right to fair trial Why or why not You can t just give some rights but deny some ie well we feed all of our people and house them so they don t need the right to vote since we provide all rights but thatquot Social and economic second generation rights are positive because they require gov t to be more proactive and put in place certain policies that guarantee those rights I Some argue these are less important Political and civil first generation rights are negative because gov t have to refrain from doing things but don t have to be proactive I Some argue that these are more important I But you cannot prioritize they are all important and necessary If it is required to live a life of dignity then it is as important as any other
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