Thursday, 27 January 2011

The Best

" When I contemplate the natural dignity of man; when I feel (for nature has not been kind enough to me to blunt my feelings) for the honour and happiness of its character, I become irritated at the attempt to govern mankind by force and fraud, as if they were all knaves and fools, and can scarcely avoid the disgust at those who are imposed upon. "
- Thomas Paine

Issues surrounding the hurt, the injustice, the impoverishment of another rarely doesn't strike a chord; as human beings we feel.

Human rights as a movement encourages justice, equality, provision, freedom.

However the idea of human rights can be abused. Lawyers use the idea of human rights to undermine laws as well as argue their client's freedom (whether rightly or wrongly, for both the prosecution and the defendant). The idea of human rights is used to win an argument, to abuse rights, and to demand a questionable right. Basic human rights are not just the right to food and shelter, it's the right to the best food, the best housing, the best car, a computer, a phone, designer clothing. Whatever the individual wants at the time, they demand as a basic human right.

While these 'basic' human rights are being claimed, across the street there are those in hunger, without substantial clothing, without a roof over their heads.

While we can demand the best, we are seemingly unaware of those without even the worst.

Thursday, 13 January 2011


"Naomi Ruth, Naomi Ruth, grow up big and tell the truth"

My dad used to say this when I was little. A short rhyme that has stuck with me ever since.

"Grow up big"
Why my dad chose to say "grow up big" is beyond me.
Did he want me to grow up fat? Did he want me to grow up tall? Or maybe big in character? Was I to 'fill a room' when I entered it? Or was it simply to make the rhyme?

I guess it probably was added with the intention to make the rhyme. I, however, have used it in terms of character. Not to be 'small' and insignificant, but to be 'big', to be noticed, to be important. Not to hide away when I have something to share, not to cower in conflict, not to allow myself to be looked over.

"Tell the truth"
This, quite simply, reminds me of the importance to be truthful. It seems to have been added/included as the main focus point. So why the emphasis on truth?

Truth not Lies
When thinking about truth, lying comes to mind. The damage that can be done when lies are spoken. I think about English lessons and the idea of a 'web of lies'.
"O' what a tangled web we weave,
when first we practice to deceive"
(Sir Walter Scott)
A quote I'm sure we have all come across at least once in our lives; in English lessons, in reading, in a film, in a song.
The damage that can be done by lies is immense; one small word spoken, one small action made, can have major repercussions. For example, thinking about the financial scandals in government - one seemingly small lie, one major outcome.

To be truthful is to be honourable.
Worthy of respect.
Is respect not something we all long for?
'Respect my privacy'. 'Respect my wishes'.
What makes someone worthy of respect?
Is not truthfulness a respectful virtue?
How much more do we want to be honoured?

'I am the truth'
Maybe "tell the truth" was spoken in a sense of prophetic language.
Jesus says "I am the way, the truth and the life" (John 14:6)
Did my dad add this in the hope that I would share the good news of Jesus Christ?
The Truth that Jesus is, is the only truth. Therefore is it not the Truth that should be spoken.
Published with Blogger-droid v1.6.5