Bloggers Unite For Human Rights Day

Today is Bloggers Unite for Human Rights Day. Blog Catalog and Amnesty International have joined forces to increase awareness of human rights violations in the world. They have urged the bloggers who have signed up to blog about a human rights issue today.

The first article in the United Nations Declaration of Human Rights states that:

” All human beings are born free and equal in dignity and rights. They are endowed with reason and conscience and should act towards one another in a spirit of brotherhood.”

The basic rights to life: freedom of speech and religion, freedom from torture, and the right to health, education and an adequate standard of living are violated throughout the world every day.

The recent cyclone in Myanmar is a grim example of this. In Myanmar before the cyclone hit, 90% of the population were living below the poverty line. 60% of the population consisted of women and children. Now thousands of people are dead, missing, homeless, displaced, dispossessed, desperate. They have no homes, no food, no water. There is a real and terrible threat of cholera, malaria, and other diseases.

The people of Myanmar need aid desperately but the country is under a military regime, which is prepared to receive supplies but will not allow foreign aid workers into the country. Without those foreign aid workers there is no guarantee the aid will be distributed at all.

In the aftermath of a national disaster it is one’s right to receive aid if needed. The Burmese generals are denying their people that right. I hope that this movement, this day, will raise awareness of the need in Myanmar for relief and recovery.

Imagine your home, your heart, your life, being hauled apart by the wind and the rain. Imagine the thought of your life, your breath, being peeled back like the husk on an ear of corn, then blown away. Imagine watching your mother die. Your father. Your sister. And being able to do nothing about it. Imagine hearing screams of terror, of pain, and blocking your ears only to realise you are the one doing the screaming.

Imagine afterwards when it is quiet and you can do nothing but stand, all skin and bone, the storm still raging in your veins, unable to recognise the place you have lived in all your life. And knowing, really knowing, with a pain that thrusts its ragged fingers into your heart, that you have nothing but the damp, mouldering clothes you are standing in.

Spread the word, raise awareness, our responsibility is a collective one. One voice can become a thousand voices very quickly. This day isn’t about being part of a fashionable cause, it’s about keeping people alive. Raise your voice. You can make a difference.

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12 thoughts on “Bloggers Unite For Human Rights Day

  1. It is so frustrating to read the accounts of the situation in Myanmar because it makes me feel so helpless. If ever there was a government that needed to get the boot, that one is it.

    I am hoping that the Chinese government will accept aid if it is necessary, and will distribute it to those in need.

    Well written post, Selma (as usual). The last three paragraphs were especially touching.

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  2. BRITT – yet it happens all over the world. Australia has a terrible track record re. treatment of our indigenous people. It makes me sad.

    AVITABLE – I know. Sometimes it makes me wonder what’s going on in this crazy world. It often doesn’t make sense.

    MELEAH – it must be a nightmare for them. I can’t imagine how hard it must be. either.

    KAREN – China is another one. And Darfur. I often wonder why I ended up where I am and the people suffering in places like Africa ended up where they are. Is it just luck that for the moment I am in a better place? I don’t have the answers but I often wonder about it.

    MOMO FALI – my pleasure. I really appreciate your feedback.

    RICHARD – I am coming to read it right now…..

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  3. It’s simply unbelievable that these people are being denied help and assistance by their own governments. It makes no sense at all. The level of suffering is of such magnitude that we would be hard pressed to understand no matter how much we try to imagine it.

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  4. It is interesting to compare what is happening in Burma to the response in China following the earthquake. The Chinese pulled out all stops, and are now even accepting foreign expertise.
    Just one word from China to the Burmese generals and it would have been the same. If China wants to enter the modern world, it’s time it took seriously its regional responsibilities.

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  5. DIAMONDS – I had no idea about Switzerland. I am on my way to your blog to find out more.

    ANTHONY – Oh, I completely agree. China has such influence. If only…..

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