Debate on Human Rights

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Debate on Human Rights
As much as “human right” is important, there are several different debates going on about it. This part of the essay would introduce three major issues of debate which are the East-West conflict, North-South conflict, and universalism versus cultural relativism. The notion of East-West conflict is the clash of ideas between the Western parts of the world versus the East. More specifically, this conflict occurred when the West side of the world, with United States on the lead, emphasized civil and political rights over social and economic rights. They used the concept of civil and political rights to criticize the Soviet Union and to justify themselves for the Cold War policies. On the other side, the Soviet Union criticized United States back for racial discrimination and opposed them by emphasizing social and economic rights. A simplified definition of the North-South conflict is conflict between the wealthy and the poor. In this case, the wealthy would generally be the northern part of the world and the poor would be the southern. These two groups of countries in the international community started to collide when the developing nations in the south wanted to actualize cultural and collective rights. Yet, the developed countries started to ignore the basic needs of the people in the developing countries and denied the existence of any “right to development”. The universalism and cultural relativism conflict involves two layers of debate – applicability and differences among cultures. Cultural relativists have a say in both layers. They argue that inherent biases are involved. They claim that conceptualization of human right by the United Nations fail to acknowledge the different characteristics of the non-western countries, being Eurocentric. Under this stance cultural relativist are against the West to impose their values on the rest of the world.

Dealing With Violations of Human Rights
Despite the different perspectives and...
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