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There are many things that contradict the universality implied in Human Rights to humans, as individual possessors of rights and reinforce a capitalist society.1.does not extend to children – in the world of Human Rights children are not “persons in law”. This enforces cabalism as these rights would only be given after the age at which a person becomeslegally able to be in a contract relation. 2.Women are also denied in law or in practice the full range of rights.In dominant Capitalist nations like Western states, the notion of rights being universal to all humans and is an important statement to governments. It was declaration in 1993 at the World Conference on Human Rights that “democracy, development and respect for Human Rights and fundamental freedoms are interdependent and mutually reinforcing.” The word “democracy” in this declaration refers to liberal democracy in the form that guarantees a better framework for private (corporate) property as appearing to give rights to citizens. The word “development” refers to capitalist development in economic growth in capital accumulation; “respect for human rights and fundamental freedoms” is respect for civil and political rights underlying liberal democracy and the capitalist mode of production.Capitalismis a mode of productionbased on private ownership of the means of production. Capitalists producecommodities for the exchange market and to stay competitive must extract as much labor from the workers as possible at the lowest possible cost.Furthermore, the universality of human rights in compromised in two significant ways. 1.In a system of private property, in order to exercise ones right to owner property, you have to have the financial means to do so. Thisdetermines that the relative amount a human is worth determines the degree to which these rights can be exercised. 2.Rights can only hold universal truth if only a system is put in place for their defense and advancement. When these mechanisms do notexist, or exist for some rights more than others, making it proven rights are not universal. 12
Human Rights are the abstract expression of the economic, political and ethical principles of capitalist nations; before capitalism no such rights existed and where capitalism does not exist neither do these rights.“The notion of equality, however, is only an abstraction; no two humans are equal in any empirical way. The equality claimed for human rights applies only to the equal possession of rights; and there … are limitations to this equality” (pg. 22).Learning Activity 4Read Chapter 3 in The Riddle of Human Rights, by Gary Teeple.1.What effect do private property rights have on society and workers?All human communities are defined by the structure of their rights and their association of power. The right to own private property is an exclusive human right that allows an individual (including corporations as fictitious individuals) to contribute to a capitalist mode of production.