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Is Money More Important Than Human Rights?

2009-06-30

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I asked my team this morning to inspire me with some material for my blog, I asked them 'What makes you unhappy?'

One reply was 'People thinking that money is more important than human rights'

I thought this was a fabulous topic, although a complex and difficult one to explore.

Success and money are normally quite interwoven, even though I clearly state in the Little Red Success Book that success does not mean just getting rich. Success means achieving whatever you want in life, and that may be just walking to the corner store for an agoraphobic, or a successful kidney transplant for someone ill, or the chance to visit Africa and see a lion in the wild, or disovering the cure for cancer, or learning to read. All these things are examples of success.

FACT: All of these things need money from someone to achieve.

Money is never more important, philosophically, than human rights.

However the real world functions with money. Without money, sadly little is possible, even human rights. It does not mean that the Mum of a child starving needs money to buy food, (but I guess their Mum would think that was pretty fantastic!) as there are charitable organisations who feed starving kids, but those organisations need money to provide the food for starving children.

I think you cannot seperate money and human rights, they are inextricably linked. With no money then noone can help anyone else, human rights will be in more danger because of lack of basic necessities.

There are many instances where money and human rights are in conflict, such as exploitation of indigenous people for the production of minerals, oil, uranium, gas, gems etc. Removal of habitat, for the timber or other natural resources, that means that people no longer have a choice about living their traditional life. Selling of young men and women ( really boys and girls) into the sex trade in Asia and Eastern Europe is a serious conflict. 

Often we see examples of people with money, particularly big money, in conflict with peoples rights. It is not the money that is the problem, it is the attitude of people with cold hearts regardless of how much money is involved.

There are many very rich and successful people who donate millions for amazing projects that assist human rights. Without the benefiance of these wealthy people, human rights would be in a much worse position.

Money and power can corrupt many a good person with great intentions, but also equally - money can help many a person with great intention to influence the human rights issues positively.

In the end, it is what is in our hearts that makes a difference either way. It is how we act towards each other that decides, money is an inanimate object that is necessary for food, clothing and shelter - the basics.

My answer to the question, is they both have equal importance! One cannot exist without the other in 2009.

Lots of Money is needed if we are to:

  • provide food for starving nations, or groups
  • provide doctors, healthcare, immunisation for low (or no) income families, and countries
  • provide education for everyone
  • provide clean water
  • provide sanitation
  • teach ways to self help
  • build houses in poor communities
  • care for homeless children

and find solutions to other human rights issues by re-education, litigation, or even military defence for a small free nation under seige who requests help.

Do people really think that Mother Teresa could have done her work without money coming in? Of course not!

If in our own hearts we are happy and successful then we will never be someone who harms human rights with money, we are more inclined to assist those less fortunate than ourselves in a way of our choosing.

The more people who are happy and successful, then the less human rights issues there will be. It is the combination of these two states - happy and successful - that is SO POWERFUL!

You are Amazing - Have Happiness in your Heart and Achieve Everything You Want!

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