Human rights - Social justice


I've just encountered something that had never occurred to me before, something that explains so much about how different parts of the world handle things like health care, for example. I mean, I knew it, I'd just never seen it put in these specific terms.

I've just read something by a professor of social work in the US, who talked of how such things are viewed in different parts of the world. Health care, for example, in peer nations elsewhere, is seen as a human right - but not in the US. In the US, such things are seen in terms of social justice.

It is, indeed, a very nauseating consideration, to turn a person's very well-being (their access to basic health care, to life-saving insulin, or their access to clean drinking water), into something that they should be granted by the state as a form of charity, or as a form of donated fairness from 'well-meaning' haves to the have-nots, as opposed to those things simply being accepted as the very minimum of a fair and decent existence, and, indeed, being the obligation of the state to provide for all citizens and others under the state's care. Yes, the wealthy should, because they can, but they shouldn't, because the state should, but neither are, because of greed and indifference, holding fast to the I've-got-mine philosophy of the blinkered and wilfully blind.

Why are these things even a question? The water is poison. Fix it.. People are dying. Fix it. These should not even be a debate, but they are; and I worry for Canada, that we will turn fully down a road of self-interest: self-interest of the haves over the have-nots, self-interest of the few over the many, self-interest of the 1%, turning human rights into charities, as opposed to a nation that doesn't question a person's right to exist, to eat, to be healthy, to be safe, to stay alive.



2019 03 10 - 17:40

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