Breach of Rights
By Maryam Hussain

January 4, 2009

It is generally accepted that every human being is born with fundamental rights. Around the globe now there are Human Rights Acts in order to protect the basic human rights of people. These usually include protection against torture and other inhumane and degrading treatment, prohibition of discrimination based on sex, color, race, religion etc, the right to a fair trial, right to live a private life unless it affects the society in a negative way. And the list of rights goes on and on.

Unfortunately these fundamental rights are not taken care of all over the world. To spot light just how severe the problem is that we are facing, not only is it a concept limited to a specific country or religion only, it is now a global phenomenon. Despite the increase in awareness against brutality, odious and atrocious behavior towards mankind a minority chooses to remain oblivious and apathetic to this increasing issue.

In every corner of the world people are discriminated against, their voices and thoughts are being suppressed because they want a chance to think and experience life in their own terms. However the social pressure limits their thoughts and pushes them in a direction suitable and acceptable to the majority. It seems to me that we are afraid of revolutionary actions. Naturally no one person would be in favor of changes that bring along blood of innocents, destruction and an obstacle in the way of serenity. But this issue of rights has to be addressed urgently, and as much as possible.

Sadly these rights are being breached in every society. People are not given their liberty; they are not given a chance to live how they want. Being a product of the 21st century it would only be wise to address this issue with an open mind to the diversity of people around the world. Tolerance, patience and empathy are necessarily needed to deal with other people.

I once came across a woman who said that more than half the problems people face would be solved did we just hold on to the gist of one narration of the Prophet Muhammad S.A.W that a true believer is he who wishes for his brother what he wished for himself. If we analyze, what that woman said are precious words that should be carved in stone. It is very true that if we thought how we want to be treated and thought of it the same way for other people, we would experience heavenly feelings on earth.

As mentioned earlier patience, tolerance and empathy is needed. The minority across the world which spreads xenophobia and extremism which compels them to incite hatred towards other have to be fought. Clearly this is only possible if organizations like Amnesty International keep onto hope, determination and motivation. This is the only thing which will better the situation of the global village.

Unity, dedication, devotion and adherence to peoples needs are required. We need an enthusiastic youth, and generations of people willing to help others and make it easier for them get through tough times. Breach of human rights is becoming an everyday problem which makes it even harder to accept. Thousands of people are deprived of their right to a fair trial for instance in prisons. Likewise minorities living in either a dominant Muslim or non-Muslim territory may face hardships practicing their religion freely and safely.

Personally I feel that the world is a big road with countless directions. Just like in a house you find every individual with different opinions and thoughts. In the same manner on this road you will find all kinds of people traveling in different directions with different purposes of life. Denying them their rights will not solve the disputes; on the contrary it will trigger hatred and violent behavior. No one wants to experience assault of any kind, and avoiding that is possible only if we learn to accept the differences amongst ourselves and others. Obviously that would not mean we shut our eyes to the bad in the world, always work against it but in a peaceful way.

By and large all we can do is to fulfill our part of the job. I once came across a scholar who said, if you start fulfilling other peoples rights you will mentally become so occupied that you will forget about your own. Plus making another person happy results in inner satisfaction and gratification. So as commoners what we are capable of doing is to try and give people their rights, the people that we deal with on a daily basis. If we donít get our rights we need to raise our voices and seek help, devoid of merciless treatments and atrocious behavior. And of course if nothing else we can always pray for everyone. That would surely be a help on our part, because according to the Muslim belief; prayers can bring about changes.


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