Protecting the Human Rights of Immigrants - Essay Example

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This paper "Protecting the Human Rights of Immigrants" focuses on protecting the human rights of immigrants which is not something that can be globally legislated. First of all, immigration is still considered voluntary, so that implies acceptance of the rules of the new home social structure.  …
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Protecting the Human Rights of Immigrants Protecting the human rights of immigrants is not something that can be globally legislated. First of all, immigration is still considered voluntary, so that implies acceptance of the rules of the new home social structure. There is also no global authority concerning the internal rights of both the citizens and the leaders of any jurisdiction. Finally, and especially, there is no accepted global definition of human rights. There will always be inequality based upon differences. The best we can do is to apply pressure for most nations to adopt and enforce certain international standards.
Immigrants come voluntarily to any nation. In fact, they often go to extreme economic hardship in order to immigrate to their country of choice. There is no homogenization among nations concerning visas, work permits and residency rules, much less immigration rules. Unless there is an incentive to creating and enforcing these rules, there is no way to impose or enforce compliance internationally, neither should there be. As a global group there is very little that even the major nations can agree upon. There is even less that any group of nations would have the right to impose.
The definition of what universal human rights are is anything but universal. Even if we could come to a vague agreement upon which rights should be universal, the degree to which any such rights are enforced could not be imposed. Therefore, authorities would be able to achieve individuality by simple difference of application. The right to freedom from illegal imprisonment is one right that is close to being acceptable internationally. However, across the globe there are main differences concerning cultural focus of law. There are individual centered and group centered, That is, in some nations, such as America, the rights of the individual often take precedence over the rights of the group, except where so doing would violate more important rights. However, in China, the rights of the group are considered paramount about individual rights. So imprisonment of one individual is considered better than allowing that individual to interfere with the lives of the group in any way. Therefore, China jails dissenters or removes them from the area where they have “caused trouble”. Individual freedom of speech is less important than the group freedom from disturbance.
So, protecting the rights of immigrants becomes even more difficult globally. One issue is women’s rights. American women take it as a given that a woman should have the right to dress any way she likes, as long as it is not publically lewd or insulting. However, what may be insulting in America is not so in Iraq. Lewdness of dress may be to show frontal nudity in America. However, in Iraq, in certain ethnic areas, showing one’s face in public is just as unacceptable. We tend to forget that it was not that long ago when women would scandalize their neighbors by showing their ankles. Acceptability of individual behavior is mainly cultural, with the exception of maiming and killing others.
We can even espouse the protection of minority rights, but which rights and which minority. We can find differences enough to subdivide he entire human race if we want to do that. So how do we impost protection of minorities when the definition of a minority is so slippery? Most people do not understand that there are 56 ethnic minorities in China, because they are seen by North Americans as Chinese, all Chinese. However, the PRC recognizes these 55 minorities, with the one Han Chinese the majority. Should America have to do the same and divide its Chinese population by ethnic minority as defined by the PEC? If we take this far enough, we wind up changing a collective society to an individualist society, because we identify minorities of one.
The final question to answer is whether any group has the right to impose its value system on another. If we insist upon globalizing human rights, who will make the rules and who will enforce them? National governments rule by legitimate means provided by their citizens, even if that legitimacy is restricted to the mere acknowledgement of that ruler’s power. Does any group have the right to impose the value system of its group upon another? Would that not be a gross violation of national human rights?
Consequently, the best we can hope to do in to convince other nations to create laws and enforce them equitably. This is the rule of law we aim for. Beyond the very basic rights to life and food and relative freedom, we cannot decide how any country treats its immigrants. Besides, if immigrants are still going to these places, there must be some reason why. Read More
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