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of an entirely novel way of thinking about animals' legal rights

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Attributing human rights to God's commands may give them a securestatus at the metaphysical level, but in a very diverse world it doesnot make them practically secure. Billions of people do not believe inthe God of Christianity, Islam, and Judaism. If people do notbelieve in God, or in the sort of god that prescribes rights, then ifyou want to base human rights on theological beliefs you must persuadethese people of a rights-supporting theological view. This is likelyto be even harder than persuading them of human rights. Legalenactment at the national and international levels provides a far moresecure status for practical purposes.

While third world countries are experiencing ..


Since ancient times, people didn't have the culture of taking care of animals and still today that we have the knowledge and every kind of source of information, it is currently happening worldwide.

 

Many issues concerning animal rights are fluid and ..


This view is attractive but has serious difficulties. Althoughworldwide acceptance of human rights has been increasing rapidly inrecent decades (see ), worldwidemoral unanimity about human rights does not exist. Human rightsdeclarations and treaties are intended to change existing norms, notjust describe the existing moral consensus.


Should human rights be defined in terms of serving some sort ofpolitical function? Instead of seeing human rights as groundedin some sort of independently existing moral reality, a theorist mightsee them as the norms of a highly useful political practice thathumans have constructed or evolved. Such a view would see the idea ofhuman rights as playing various political roles at the national andinternational levels and as serving thereby to protect urgent human ornational interests. These political roles might include providingstandards for international evaluations of how governments treat theirpeople and as helping to specify when use of economic sanctions ormilitary intervention is permissible. There are powerful advocates ofthis sort of view (see Rawls 1999 and Beitz 2009; see also the entryon ). These theorists would add tothe four defining elements above some set of political roles orfunctions. This view may be plausible for the verysalient international human rights that have emerged ininternational law and politics in the last fifty years. But humanrights can exist and function in contexts not involving internationalscrutiny and intervention such as a world with only onestate. Imagine, for example, that an asteroid strike had killedeveryone in all countries except New Zealand, leaving it the onlystate in existence. Surely the idea of human rights as well as manydimensions of human rights practice could continue in New Zealand,even though there would be no international relations, law, orpolitics (for an argument of this sort see Tasioulas 2012). And if afew people were discovered to have survived in Iceland and were livingwithout a government or state, New Zealanders would know that humanrights governed how these people should be treated even though theywere stateless. How deeply the idea of human rights must be rooted ininternational law and practice should not be settled by definitionalfiat. We can allow, however, that the sorts of political functionsthat Rawls and Beitz describe are typically served byinternational human rights today.


Unfortunately, half the world doesn't

Perhaps the debate about relativism and human rights has becomeobsolete. In recent decades widespread acceptance of human rights hasoccurred in most parts of the world. Three quarters of theworld’s countries have ratified the major human rights treaties,and many countries in Africa, the Americas, and Europe participate inregional human rights regimes that have international courts (see below). Further, all ofthe world's countries now use similar political institutions (law,courts, legislatures, executives, militaries, bureaucracies, police,prisons, taxation, and public schools) and these institutions carrywith them characteristic problems and abuses (Donnelly 2003: 46, 92;Nickel 2007, 173–4). Finally, globalization has diminished thedifferences among peoples. Today’s world is not the one thatearly anthropologists and missionaries found. National and culturalboundaries are breached not just by international trade but also bymillions of travelers and migrants, electronic communications,international law covering many areas, and the efforts ofinternational governmental and non-governmentalorganizations. International influences and organizations areeverywhere and countries borrow freely and regularly from eachother’s inventions and practices.

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When a government violates the human rights of its residents the victims maybe able to appeal to the country's laws or bill of rights and get acourt to order that the violations stop and that the governmentprovide remedies. If suitable national laws and bills of rights areunavailable, however, victims of human rights violations may want helpfrom international law and organizations. Traditionally,international law did not confer rights and protections on individualpersons; its concern was exclusively the rights and duties ofcountries or states. Victims of human rights violations could appealto heaven, and invoke standards of natural justice, but there were nointernational organizations working to formulate and enforce legalrights of individuals. After World War I the League of Nations hadsome success in using minority rights treaties to protect nationalminorities in Europe, but the effort ended with the rise of NaziGermany and the beginning of World War II.

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At the 1993 World Conference on Human Rights in Vienna, countriesincluding Singapore, Malaysia, China, and Iran advocated accommodationswithin human rights practice for cultural and economicdifferences. Western representatives tended to view the positionof these countries as excuses for repression andauthoritarianism. The Conference responded by approving the . It included in Article 5 the assertion that countries should not pickand choose among human rights: “All human rights are universal,indivisible and interdependent and interrelated. The internationalcommunity must treat human rights globally in a fair and equal manner,on the same footing, and with the same emphasis. While thesignificance of national and regional particularities and varioushistorical, cultural and religious backgrounds must be borne in mind,it is the duty of States, regardless of their political, economic andcultural systems, to promote and protect all human rights andfundamental freedoms.”