Violating Human Rights

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Halle Rothstein May 24, 2012
The establishment of a code of human rights is a relatively recent concept introduced by the United Nations in 1946. However, code list is not globally accepted, but is upheld and respected by progressive democratic thinking countries. Not all can agree on what constitutes a human right, but looking back through the course of history it is clear that there have been countless violations of what the U.N. has presented as human rights. Some of the most prominent violations of these rights stem from tensions between different religions. French Huguenots and German Jews were targeted by their government and denied their human rights, as established by the United Nations in the Universal Declaration of Human Rights. The St Bartholomew’s Day Massacre was a riot that resulted in the death of French Huguenots. Catholic mobs intruded the homes of French Protestants and slaughtered them in the middle of the night. The violent outbreak, arranged by Catherine de Medici after the marriage of Henry of Navarre and the sister of King Charles IX, violated basic human rights, such as freedom to safety from violence as well as right to the freedom to exist. The animosity between the Roman Catholic Church and the Huguenot population was the cause of the massacre, thus violating the human right that permits one to believe in and practice their desired religion. Although St. Bartholomew’s Day occurred before Henry of Navarre issued the Edict of Nantes, a document recognizing and permitting the practice of Protestantism, the U.N. recognizes the events that occurred on St. Bartholomew’s Day as a violation of human rights. Coligny was recognized as the political and military leader of the Huguenots living in France. He fought during the French Wars of Religion to defend the rights of Protestants of practice their religion freely and without persecution. He was killed in the battle for his religious beliefs and failed to live long enough to see...
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