In my estimation the strategic project of the next century (100 years) is the movement of fathers taking unto themselves alone, the sexual formation of their sons, resulting in sons capable of being great husbands and fathers. However, I predict that those interested in a totalitarian state (the socialist state) as well as radical-core feminists (and there is a significant overlap) will oppose this movement with merciless pursuit, for, if it spreads, it takes away from them their most powerful tool — “sex gone wild”.
In the forthcoming square-off fathers, who do have the inherent right to direct the education of their children, we will need the back-stop of law. Luckily this right is recognized in the United Nations Human Rights Treaties and Declarations of the late 1940’s and early 1950’s. The world’s reflection on what had gone wrong during and leading up to World War I and World War II led to the founding of the United Nations and with its hope that such horrors would not happen again, and to that end issued the Human Rights documents.
But with rampant individualism coupled with ignorance of the nature of good government, “Human Rights” discourse, today, is a double-edged sword even among — especially among — educated Westerners, most of whom cannot articulate the nature of human rights and as a result are increasing easy prey for “false rights.”
When properly formulated, “human rights” give expression to the universal instinct for justice and fairness that resides in the heart of every person, let he or she be rich or poor, white, yellow, bronze or black, educated or not, religious or not, of every religion. The defining characteristic of every true human right is that it is universal: It never deprives another of the same right. Universal human rights do not contradict each other, neither between individuals or within the individual himself.
Human rights are the same for all, else they are not basic human rights, no matter how good they may seem to be. Abortion is the clearest example of this. Totalitarian imposition (government forcing one to act in a bad way) almost happened when the Obama Administration attempted to impose “a right to contraception” on the Little Sisters of the Poor. Even graver false rights have already won “government privilege”: Abortion, embryo research, no-fault divorce.
The debasement of human rights language leads to a “wish list of personal desires” that some think deserving enough to gain the title of “a human right.” In the name of these false rights basic human rights are denied to others.
Other instances of the violation of human rights are frequently found in the realm of labor law which emerged — with much help from Catholic Social Teaching — to protect the powerless (workers) from the powerful (owners of big companies). Such violations continue today in some practices of multinational corporations, and now even by major labor unions.
Other violations occur in the education of children: In Germany homeschooling is outlawed. Totalitarianism is not totally dead in Germany by any means. United Nations basic documents on human rights articulate the rights of parents to direct the moral and religious education of their children. Germany very deliberately and openly violates them — with impunity in the international community.
“Sex ed” in this country, is another major area of violation of the rights of parents to direct the education of their children. Education boards and teachers unions claim “false rights” when they enforce such curricula. It is in this area the clash with fathers will occur.
A false rights debasement of human rights leads to cynicism, and to a loss of faith in government. Should a populace learn to accept them, the ground is prepared for acceptance of increasing government control. The honoring of universal human rights is at the core of human political freedom. The Founding Fathers articulated this. Though they succeeded in so much and gave the world the wonder that is the Bill of Rights and The American Constitution, they failed in one glaring area: African Americans were not treated with equal dignity. And the nation paid a heavy price for this failure.
Thus, the dignity and equality before the law of every single individual on earth is the principle measure of human rights. If it is not universal, it is not a human right. This simple criterion applies to every issue, in every dimension, from genocide to bioethics.
There are many professions and organizations that need clarity of thought on human rights so that sound decisions can be made: Virtually every job in the United States Congress, in state legislatures and even at county government level. Many civil service jobs need this training to a high degree: In the Department of Health and Human Services for such things as human trafficking, the abuse of children, care of the poor, the homeless, the dying, in the treatment and care of addicts. Civil servants in the State Department particularly need this, but also in the Department of Labor, the Department of Education, the Department of Housing and Urban Development and in the Department of Homeland Security. All need clear thinking on this issue.
Further afield: Those who work for international agencies, such as the United Nations, the Organization of American States, the World Health Organization, as well as for international NGOs, all need the same clear intellectual formation.
Doctors and nurses and hospital administrators need this. The need in healthcare is growing rapidly as advances are made in medicine but at costs so high some are tempted to think of euthanasia (murder).
Every high school teacher ought to be familiar with the distinction between false and true rights. Every high school principal needs to be expert on it and ought to ensure all pupils become competent in making the difference clear, because every voter needs to never let false rights trump human rights.
Over and above all those mentioned above there are many who should consider getting this training: Those finishing their bachelor degree but not yet decided on a career path; mothers returning in midcareer to the workplace as their children become less dependent on them; retiring baby boomers who have the leisure of good health, many remaining years and the financial flexibility to become involved in NGOs where they can make a difference.
Given the vast need for tens of thousands of people trained in this way of thinking many ought to think of conquering the subject matter.
The Catholic Church, being universal (catholic) organization, is well-placed and has much experience and the longest historical track record in the issues of human rights claims: Ethnic people versus their conquerors, business owners versus workers, and workers versus business owners, parents versus schools, and schools versus parents. The Church’s history in articulating the principles involved are well-known and the Catholic viewpoint did much to shape the founding human rights treaties of the United Nations. The Church’s latest contribution in this field is led the coauthor of the article on the fundamental right (human right) of every child to the marriage of his parents. William Saunders J.D. (Harvard Law) is director of a new MA program in Human Rights at The Catholic University of America. He and Professor Robbie George of Princeton University conduct a wonderful exploration of the issues here: beginning at minute 2.30.
For particulars of The Master of Arts in Human Rights program click here.
Do have a look at it and pass on the information to those – young and old — who might be interested. Their contribution to society could be greatly enhanced with this degree.
For the good of the child,
Pat Fagan, Ph.D.
 That does not mean they will draw on the help of others — but it will be at their request.