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NATURAL HUMAN RIGHTS
ECOLOGICAL and SOCIAL SUSTAINABILITY.
The attributes of ecological and social
sustainability include simplicity and transparency. In simpler
situations fewer things can go wrong, and simpler situations are
easier to monitor by more members of the society.
The transition to an ecologically and socially sustainable society
would be greatly helped by enabling people to live more simply if
and whenever they would want to do so. It would not be necessary to
further complicate the already existing complexity by creating of
yet more laws that would try to regulate the making of our lives
"more simple" and more "sustainable"--this could hardly be achieved by such means.
The end of making our human existence more ecologically sustainable and socially sustainable could be helped along by recognizing of some
basic "natural human rights" that already exist, that stem from being
human, and that are being neglected in our present day society to a
great detriment of us all.
"Natural human rights" are rights that enable the fulfillment of the very basic and natural needs that a living entity might have, such
as--the need to sleep, to rest, to nourish itself, to rid the body of body wastes, to
keep clean, etc.
Since "natural human rights" are not recognized in our society, not only
there are people (the "homeless") who are subjected to living in
conditions that would be unacceptable to allow to exist for most
animals that people care about, but also that other people who,
although still able to manage to maintain conditions suitable for
sustaining life, live in a dread of eventually, perhaps, being
prevented from doing so. This persistent anxiety is a stress that
causes a great number of problems for our society.
Should "natural human rights" be recognized and guaranteed, this fact
alone would engender some very basic and lasting benefits for the
sanity of the entire society. Honoring of the natural rights would
mean in effect that every individual of the society would have a
right to a very basic, if only a humble habitat that would exist
independent of any considerations of the commodity market. One
would not necessarily have to "own" this fundamental, rudimentary, for one's
well-functioning within the society vitally necessary place, but one would
"own" the inalienable right to it.
Being able to exercise the "natural human rights" is a foremost condition
for the well-being of the whole society and a foundation for establishing of a socially sustainable society.
People who are prevented from the exercise of their "natural human rights" become stressed, their physical and mental health suffers,
and they are less able to contribute to the common weal of the
society meaningfully. They, instead, become liabilities.
Most of social ills and many health problems (both--physical and
mental) can be directly attributed to the inability of people to
exercises their "natural human rights".
The recognition, assurance, and defense of "natural human rights" would make the transition to a true ecological and social sustainability easier--a socially sustainable society would eventually eliminate processes that are harmful to the environment, because such processes are possible to exist generally only in a society where "transparency", the ability to see the consequences of such harmful-to-the-environment processes is absent--people who lead stressful lives don't have the leisure to observe the consequences of their actions, they are busy trying to cope with stress; Such "transparency" is possible only in a society that is socially sustainable, where people have more leisure, and therefore they are able to exercise a greater control over their lives.
A society that self-abuses itself cannot be expected to take care of its environment in a sustainable way.
The above term "natural human rights" is not quite related to the Lockeian "natural rights", mainly because in John Locke's time there still was a very little, if any, concern about ecological sustainability. The "nature" of his time was still being perceived as bountiful, inexhaustible, and a subject to being conquered. In his opinion a native American Indian, who by our today's standards might have lived in harmony with his/her environment, was not making full use of Nature in comparison with a European. This attitude persists to present day. Concerns about "ecological sustainability" , generally, have no place in societies that are based on expansion and domination.
Similarly--concerns with "social sustainability" started arising only very recently, and the definitions of the term are still very vague. Till the world filled up with humans, social misfits were disposed of, unless those managed to move to still of "civilization" devoid parts of the globe, and thus they spread the very same "civilization" globally. Today's conditions in the world are without a precedent in human history. Although the the traditional mechanisms of solving social problems are still in effect, social "misfits" have no place to go anymore. We have to find ways how to make our society "socially sustainable". To recognize and guarantee "natural human rights" would be a good start.
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