Civil and political rights
Civil rights include the ensuring of peoples' physical and mental integrity, life
, and safety
; protection from discrimination on grounds such as race
, sexual orientation
, gender identity
, national origin
, political affiliation
, and disability
and individual rights
such as privacy
and the freedom of thought
, and movement
The phrase "Rights for Civil" is a translation of Latin jus civis
(rights of a citizen). Roman citizens could be either free (libertas
) or servile (servitus
), but they all had rights in law.
After the Edict of Milan
in 313, these rights included the freedom of religion; however in 380, the Edict of Thessalonica
required all subjects of the Roman Empire to profess Catholic Christianity.
Roman legal doctrine was lost during the Middle Ages, but claims of universal rights could still be made based on Christian doctrine. According to the leaders of Kett's Rebellion
(1549), "all bond men may be made free, for God made all free with his precious blood-shedding."
The removal by legislation of a civil right constitutes a "civil disability". In early 19th century Britain, the phrase "civil rights" most commonly referred to the issue of such legal discrimination against Catholics. In the House of Commons
support for civil rights was divided, with many politicians agreeing with the existing civil disabilities of Catholics. The Roman Catholic Relief Act 1829
restored their civil rights.
Protection of rights
The question of to whom civil and political rights apply is a subject of controversy. Although in many countries citizens
have greater protections against infringement of rights than non-citizens, civil and political rights are generally considered to be universal rights that apply to all persons
According to political scientist Salvador Santino F. Regilme Jr., analyzing the causes of and lack of protection from human rights abuses in the Global South should be focusing on the interactions of domestic and international factors—an important perspective that has usually been systematically neglected in the social science literature.
The United States Declaration of Independence
states that people have unalienable rights including "Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness". It is considered by some that the sole purpose of government is the protection of life, liberty and property.
Social movements for civil rights
Civil rights guarantee equal protection under the law. When civil and political rights are not guaranteed to all as part of equal protection of laws
, or when such guarantees exist on paper but are not respected in practice, opposition, legal action and even social unrest
Worldwide, several political movements
for equality before the law
occurred between approximately 1950 and 1980. These movements had a legal and constitutional aspect, and resulted in much law-making at both national and international levels. They also had an activist side, particularly in situations where violations of rights were widespread. Movements with the proclaimed aim of securing observance of civil and political rights included:
Most civil rights movements relied on the technique of civil resistance
, using nonviolent
methods to achieve their aims.
In some countries, struggles for civil rights were accompanied, or followed, by civil unrest
and even armed rebellion. While civil rights movements over the last sixty years have resulted in an extension of civil and political rights, the process was long and tenuous in many countries, and many of these movements did not achieve or fully achieve their objectives.
Problems and analysis
Questions about civil and political rights have frequently emerged. For example, to what extent should the government intervene to protect individuals from infringement on their rights by other individuals
, or from corporations
—e.g., in what way should employment discrimination
in the private sector
be dealt with?
First-generation rights, often called "blue" rights,
deal essentially with liberty and participation in political life. They are fundamentally civil and political in nature, as well as strongly individualistic
: They serve negatively to protect
the individual from excesses of the state. First-generation rights include, among other things, freedom of speech
, the right to a fair trial
, (in some countries) the right to keep and bear arms
, freedom of religion
, freedom from discrimination
, and voting rights
. They were pioneered in the seventeenth and eighteenth-century during the Age of Enlightenment
. Political theories associated with the English, American, and French revolutions were codified in the English Bill of Rights
in 1689 (a restatement of Rights of Englishmen
, some dating back to Magna Carta
in 1215) and more fully in the French Declaration of the Rights of Man and of the Citizen
in 1789 and the United States Bill of Rights
Civil and political rights organizations
There are current organizations that exist to protect people's civil and political rights in case they are infringed upon. The ACLU, founded in 1920, is a well known non profit organization that helps to preserve freedom of speech and work to change policy.
Another organization is the NAACP, founded in 1909, which focuses on protecting the civil rights of minorities. The NRA is a civil rights group founded in 1871 that primarily focuses on protecting the right to bear arms. These organizations serve a variety of causes one being the AFL-CIO, which are America's union that represent the working-class people nationwide.
- ^ The Civil Rights act of 1964, ourdocuments.gov Archived 2019-03-22 at the Wayback Machine
- ^ Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990, accessboard.gov Archived 2013-07-20 at the Wayback Machine
- ^ Summary of LGBT civil rights protections, by state, at Lambda Legal, lambdalegal.org
- ^ A useful survey is Paul Sieghart, The Lawful Rights of Mankind: An Introduction to the International Legal Code of Human Rights, Oxford University Press, 1985.
- ^ Mears, T. Lambert, Analysis of M. Ortolan's Institutes of Justinian, Including the History and, p. 75.
- ^ Fahlbusch, Erwin and Geoffrey William Bromiley, The encyclopedia of Christianity, Volume 4, p. 703.
- ^ "Human Rights: 1500–1760 – Background". Nationalarchives.gov.uk. Retrieved 2012-02-11.
- ^ Regilme, Salvador Santino F., Jr. (3 October 2014). "The Social Science of Human Rights: The Need for a 'Second Image Reversed'?". Third World Quarterly. 35 (8): 1390–1405. doi:10.1080/01436597.2014.946255. S2CID 143449409.
- ^ House Bill 4 Archived 2012-10-01 at the Wayback Machine
- ^ Robert Book (March 23, 2012). "The Real Broccoli Mandate". Forbes. Retrieved September 15, 2013.
- ^ Meredith Bragg & Nick Gillspie (June 21, 2013). "Cheese Lovers Fight Idiotic FDA Ban on Mimolette Cheese!". Reason. Retrieved September 15, 2013.
- ^ Jessica Flanigan (July 26, 2012). "Three arguments against prescription requirements". Journal of Medical Ethics. 38 (10): 579–586. doi:10.1136/medethics-2011-100240. PMID 22844026. Retrieved September 14, 2013.
- ^ Kerry Howley (August 1, 2005). "Self-Medicating in Burma: Pharmaceutical freedom in an outpost of tyranny". Reason. Retrieved September 14, 2013.
- ^ Daniel Schorn (February 11, 2009). "Prisoner Of Pain". 60 Minutes. Retrieved September 15, 2013.
- ^ Emily Dufton (Mar 28, 2012). "The War on Drugs: Should It Be Your Right to Use Narcotics?". The Atlantic. Retrieved September 13, 2013.
- ^ Doug Bandow (2012). "From Fighting the Drug War to Protecting the Right to Use Drugs – Recognizing a Forgotten Liberty" (PDF). Towards a Worldwide Index of Human Freedom. Chapter 10. Fraser Institute. pp. 253–280. Archived from the original (PDF) on 2015-09-24.
- ^ Thomas Szasz (1992). Our Right to Drugs: The Case for a Free Market. Praeger. ISBN 9780815603337.
- ^ "Signatures to the Seneca Falls Convention 'Declaration of Sentiments'". American History Online, Facts On File, Inc.
- ^ Cullen-DuPont, Kathryn. "Declaration of Rights and Sentiments". Encyclopedia of Women's History in America, Second Edition. New York: Facts On File, Inc., 2000. American History Online. Facts On File, Inc.
- ^ Adam Roberts and Timothy Garton Ash (eds.), Civil Resistance and Power Politics: The Experience of Non-violent Action from Gandhi to the Present, Oxford University Press, 2009. Includes chapters by specialists on the various movements.
- ^ Domaradzki, Spasimir; Khvostova, Margaryta; Pupovac, David (2019-12-01). "Karel Vasak's Generations of Rights and the Contemporary Human Rights Discourse". Human Rights Review. 20 (4): 423–443. doi:10.1007/s12142-019-00565-x. ISSN 1874-6306.
- ^ "Types and Generations of Human Rights". faculty.chass.ncsu.edu. Retrieved 2020-10-30.
- ^ "About the ACLU". American Civil Liberties Union. Retrieved 2020-10-26.
- ^ "Civil Rights Organizations — The Civil Rights Project at UCLA". www.civilrightsproject.ucla.edu. Retrieved 2020-10-26.
Last edited on 20 April 2021, at 12:24
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