Monday, January 14, 2013

Bill of Rights: We live in the difficult, but extremely rich time...

Our portal “American Clubs – Ukraine” continues publishing the essays, submitted to the Second Annual Student Essay Competition in support of Democracy in Ukraine, on the topic “Bill of Rights in the US: Democracy Lessons for Ukraine”.

We live in the difficult, but extremely rich with historical events time of passing from slavery, oppression, lack of rights to the proclamation of human rights, respect for the dignity of the person, the realization that man is responsible for himself, for his present and his future. New Ukraine, that has got independence on the turn of the centuries, declared to itself that the man, his life and rights are the highest social values. But how did all it begin? How did human rights, which are valid to this day begin to be set?

On September 3, 1783, peaceful agreements between the warring states, in which the USA was confessed an independent sovereign state, were signed in Versailles. Defeating England, a young country appeared in a very tight situation. Eight-year-old war has worsened the financial and economic situation of the country. For the salvation of the young state it was necessary to set law and order in the country. That had to be provided by the Constitution of 1787. And the following adoption of the Bill of rights was, undoubtedly, the victory of the American democracy. These documents were and still are of great importance for the democracy around the world.

History shows that every society needs to protect human rights, that the situation at that efforts were not needed for support and protection of rights and freedoms of individual is yet unknown to humanity. Each generation in its own way answers to the eternal call of history, associated with the upholding of such values as Human rights and freedoms.

Ukraine is a young modern legal state, that has chosen the path of democratic development, and on 26 June, 1996 it adopted a new Constitution. It was the first time this state fixed all the main features and principles of human rights: “Man, his life and health, honor and dignity, inviolability and security are determined in Ukraine as the greatest social value. Human rights and freedoms and their guarantees determine the content and direction of state activity . The state answers for its activity to the people. The approval and ensuring of human rights and freedoms is the main duty of the state”.

In my opinion, now the government is trying to ensure the rights of citizens in our country. For example, a lot of programs appeared on television, in recent years, where people can freely express their opinion: “Freedom of speech”, „Savik Shuster Studio”, „Big politics with Yevgeny Kiselyov” and many others. It shows that there is indeed freedom of speech in our country and people can have their own opinion and express it. For five times we have chosen our President and Parliament on free elections . And it was recognized all over the world. All post-Soviet States can`t boast by this.

Many things still do not correspond to human rights, but I really believe that our country will be able to solve all these problems. It is needed to protect the social life of people more carefully, so that every person would have a right to a really good life, to a more modern and professional medicine, to a good education. So that in declining years people would be protectedwould have everything they need. So that having fulfilled for the state benefit many years, they wouldn`t drag beggarly existence. 

"On what are founded violations of human rights? " - an experience lawyer on this issue was asked. "In greed, - was the answer. - In the desire of political and economic power." And since greed is born in the human mind, the human rights violations represent the world view of violators.

In other words, in order that the worldwide observance of human rights should take place, at least two changes must be happen: the change of the world view and that change of the government.

Education can have an impact on the minds and hearts of the people. Therefore 10 years ago, the UN launched the world public information campaign to let people know about their rights, and the states about their duties. I think and hope very much, that the world ideology of our century will be a culture of human rights.

Author: Natalia Lens'ka, Specialised School № 35, Odessa

* * *

Competition is held by the Center for Political Studies (Donetsk, Ukraine), jointly with the portal “American Clubs – Ukraine”, and the Kyiv Alumni Resource Center (ARC). General partner of the competition: American Civil Liberties Union of Hawaii (Honolulu, USA). Partners of the competition: Institute of Professional Lobbying and Advocacy (IPLA) and Donetsk Regional Association of International Researchers (DAIR). More detailed information about the competition is available here.