Given the intrinsic dignity inexorably appended to the human person – specially so when it is believed and upheld that the latter is created to the Image of God – it is both an ethical aberration and a moral deviation for anyone to claim that someone has no human rights. The inherent appendage of human rights to any and all human persons confirms and proclaims his/her sublime origin and destiny. The truth is that in these times, there are even animal rights defined and championed by some international organizations. Even for such a phenomenon alone, it would be a grave incongruity or irrationality even to but allege that nothing less than human persons have no rights –specially so on the matter of the protection and promotion of his/her life or living existence.
The acknowledgment of and respect for human rights – their affirmation and confirmation in this Country – have become quite relevant when some days ago, someone said to be aspiring for no less than the presidential Office in the land, grossly laughed at human rights, belittling if not in fact denying their gravity and relevance. Among other things, such an arrogant and erratic display of disdain for human rights, is in effect a fatal nonchalance about human dignity. And woe to the Filipinos if he is allowed to occupy the seat of power – ever.
The first and basic human right pinpointed in a relatively long list thereof enumerated and accepted by all truly civilized societies, is the right to life. And as far as the Church is concerned, her moral stance as readily found in her Social Doctrine, human life begins from conception to its eventual demise according to natural law. Without the right to life of every human person, what are all the other “Human Rights” for? And there is that someone who precisely takes pride in killing people by being their judge and executioner at the same time.
Every movement towards the identification and proclamation of rights of every human person is the most significant attempt of civilized peoples to respond effectively to the inescapable demands of human dignity. it might be good to take note of the following key observations:
1. The word “movement” readily implies that the study of and research into what are the rights of every human person – irrespective of race, color and creed – are not really all done, not yet actually final. In the course of time, some may be still proclaimed and added – if not simply redefined.
2. The term “identification” clearly means that the phrase “human rights in general” may not be altogether wrong but neither is it clear nor exact – in the sense that everyone of them has to be duly identified and accordingly respected and acclaimed by the civilized world.
3. The nature of the “human person” in effect points out not only the origin of all human rights but also their finality in terms of the affirmation and respect for human dignity – something that is a big and encompassing objective reality.