Sixty years ago today, Dec. 10, the Universal Declaration of Human Rights (UDHR), became the standard for of our modern-day human rights principles. Many of those rights are bargained away or trampled on the way to achieving some other objective.—-
“Created following the atrocities of World War II, the UDHR enumerates the fundamental human rights that are protected for people worldwide,” says a press release about the anniversary from the ACLU of Ohio. “These inalienable rights are the basis of freedom, justice and peace in the world.”
Indignation rises when genocide, starvation or other equally gruesome results become known and outrage seems to be the only possible reaction. But the ACLU is suggesting, on this most auspicious anniversary, that acting immediately instead of wringing our hands might help prevent some human rights violations in the future. The first step – contact President-elect Obama.
- “Urge that on his first day in office he:
- Ban the use of torture by the government, without exception.
- Close the Guantanamo Bay detention camp and either prosecute these detainees under criminal law or send them to countries that abide by the UDHR
- End the practice of extraordinary rendition — kidnapping people and sending them to countries where they are likely to be tortured.
And for your convenience, they offer a Web link to the office of the President-Elect – www.change.gov . After you get in touch with Obama, let us the ACLU know and include a comment about whether you received a response. Call 216-472-2200 or email [email protected].
Learn more about the UDHR from the ACLU and become part of the solution