The Politicization Of Human Rights Issues
Start writing a post

The Politicization Of Human Rights Issues

An Opinion Piece On The Current Climate In The United States

269
The Politicization Of Human Rights Issues
Graphic created by the author

In high school when learning about human rights, it has almost always been from a far away, savior perspective. Up until recently when I thought about human rights I thought about impoverished, starving families in war-ridden countries, and while these are real human rights issues, there are also many human rights issues right under my nose in the United States of America, "land of the free."

My white, upper-class privilege has allowed me to be unknowingly ignorant to so many human rights issues in my country that I have been awakened to only because of the thousands of protests that have been occurring across the country, and world, since the death of George Floyd.

Here is a list of human rights issues in the United States right now:

  1. Police Brutality
  2. Rolling back of environmental protections
  3. Rolling back of transgender health protections
  4. Attempts to roll back non-discrimination protections for lgbtq+
  5. Abuse of detained non-citizens
  6. Hate crimes
  7. Opioid epidemic
  8. Attempts to take away women's reproductive rights
  9. Freedom of expression and assembly
  10. Over-incarceration

These are issues I always knew we had, but never thought of them as human rights issues. These are also only some of the issues that the citizens of the United States face, to learn about more please visit the Human Rights Watch's page on human rights issues in the United States.

Rather than explain each of the issues I mentioned above, which I hope you will all research on your own, I want to tackle the topic of why these issues weren't classified in many people's minds as human rights issues.

I am a part of a group on campus that recently released a statement supporting the LGBTQIA+ community on their instagram story. Before it was posted members voted on whether it should be posted on our grid, our story, or not at all and members explained why they voted the way they did. One of the members who voted for the statement to not be posted at all explained that the group could lose future new members if the group as a whole "chose a side." This is when I realized why some people do not view the list above as human rights issues. Human rights have been politicized.

Black Lives Matter is about Black people wanting equality and to be able to live without fear of being killed because of their skin color. Supporting the LGBTQIA+ community is about people wanting equality no matter their sexual identity or sexual preference. Women's reproductive rights are about allowing women to have the freedom to control their own bodies. Environmental protections are about protecting our planet from deteriorating, so that our great great great grandchildren will still have a planet to live on. Yet all of these issues are politicized and connected to "a side."

Politics has normalized racism, sexism, homophobia, xenophobia, and more by painting them as political opinions.

If we cannot depolarize our country, so that human rights issues aren't viewed as being on a democrat or republican side, then we must encourage people to always choose the "side" of human rights. If one "side" fights for equality for all human beings no matter their skin color, gender, sexuality, or age, while another "side" argues against that, then how can anyone choose the latter?

Report this Content
This article has not been reviewed by Odyssey HQ and solely reflects the ideas and opinions of the creator.
Featured

Planning Another Christmas Party

Don't just plan another plain party but get creative to have everyone wanting to come back next year!

42
Getty Famous

You know it's Christmas when the radio stations change to all of your favorite holiday tunes, the air is still, and stores have the best sales. With all my favorite things from Christmas happening my least favorite probably has to be when I have to go to another same old boring Christmas party that I get invited to every year. Here are some Christmas party ideas so that you won't have another sad Christmas party.

Keep Reading... Show less
Featured

High School Soccer is Wildly Important

For Young Players Who Want to Succeed at The Next Level

1824
High School Soccer is Wildly Important

Whose choice is it? The parent? The player? There are a number of reasons that a kid may sit out of high school soccer, and to be completely honest; It is a huge mistake. High school soccer is the final piece in the puzzle that takes a player from above average or elite, to college ready by the end of their senior year. Every year thousands of talented athletes don't play for their high schools. Why though?

Keep Reading... Show less
Featured

8 Things That Should Be On Everyone's Holiday To-Do List

December is around the corner, are you ready?

4502
8 Things That Should Be On Everyone's Holiday To-Do List
Unsplash.com

As they tend to say, its the most wonderful time of the year! People have begun to compile their Christmas to-do lists in anticipation for the season of sugarplums and gingerbread.

The history of the Christmas to-do lists goes back hundreds of years, almost as old as the holiday itself, however, people tend to fall out of this habit as they get older. This is unfortunate, as the theme of Christmas tradition can add bundles of the spirit of joy to your families.

Keep Reading... Show less
Featured

Fall Weather Must-Haves

Put away the swim suits and your favorite high-waisted shorts!

6323

The transitional months of fall can cause some fashion headaches as you try to figure out what clothing to keep in your closet. With limited amount of college living space and the ever-unpredictable Nebraska weather, sometimes it’s difficult to know what should be taking up that precious closet space as you transition into winter. As you pack away those tanks and shorts for the chilly months ahead, get your closet ready with a few Fall must-haves. 

Keep Reading... Show less
Content Inspiration

Top 3 Response Articles of This Week

Take a look at the articles driving big conversations on Odyssey.

6387
https://www.theodysseyonline.com/video/we-are-rollins-odyssey
https://www.theodysseyonline.com/video/we-are-rollins-odyssey

At Odyssey, we're on a mission to encourage constructive discourse on the Internet. That's why we created the response button you can find at the bottom of every article.

Keep Reading... Show less

Subscribe to Our Newsletter

Facebook Comments