Who Defines Human Rights?

A friend of mind posted something on Facebook that had to do with the gay rights movement. I love this friend. My friend indicated that the post intended to take the emphasis off of gay rights and make it about human rights and the need for equal rights. I ended up writing a couple of paragraphs in response because it’s something I’ve been chewing on for a while and I thought I’d post them here as well. 

Here’s the question that I never seem to hear asked let alone answered. Who defines human rights? It seems to me that if we humans do, then we can change them whenever we want at which point they aren’t really rights, they are preferences. If one generation says it’s not OK to be gay, and the next one says it is OK, and then the next one decides that it really isn’t, which one is right? What if someday it’s decided that an adult man has the right to have sex with a 9 year old child, male or female? Sick? Twisted? Who is anyone to say? Human RIghts groups are mad at the way women are treated in Saudi Arabia. Who are they to judge? Why should we push our views of human rights on them and their culture? (I’m not saying I agree, I’m making a point, which is this.) How do we decide and is that decision absolute if it’s made by us humans?

The alternative is that our human rights are not determined by us subjective humans but by and objective external source to which we are held accountable, such as God. The one who creates something is the only one who is supposed to have the authority to determine how it is rightly used. If I write a book or a play I have the authority over the rights of that creation. It’s the same thing with God. Since He created us humans, He is the one who determines what our human rights are. Those rights are His best for us. When we choose to live outside of His best for us then we are also choosing to live with the consequences that come with it. When we choose to live within His best for us, we get the blessings that come with that as well.

But, like I said at the beginning, what really needs to be asked is who decides, and what gives them the authority to make that decision for everyone so absolutely?

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There are 2 comments on Who Defines Human Rights?

  • Corby,

    Excellent question. I hope this blog post will help others really think about this issue. Certainly there are truths that are evident to all, no matter how loud those opposed to the truth shout the lie they are choosing to bow to.

    The question I have is…when those in authority exchange the truth for a lie and force others to abide by that lie, what can the people do?

    I fear that is where those of us who live in the US are headed.

  • Indeed Deb. Too often want to enforce what they want to be right without thinking of the consequences of it.

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