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AFRO-NETS> Food for thought for friend and foe (4)

Food for thought for friend and foe (4)


The vast majority of humanity just has the right to see, to hear...
and to remain silent. (Eduardo Galeano)

Part (4 of 9)

The Human Rights paradigm:

24. The use of the Human Rights discourse in development work undoubt-
edly constitutes a paradigm break. But so far, this break has only been
conceptual, not yet operational. In this day and age, there is a social
need for commitment beyond ethics. What I am convinced of is that, in its
operationalization, the new Human Rights paradigm will have to become
more overtly and explicitly political with the creation of well organized
pressure groups amongst those whose Human Rights are being violated.
And to transcend minimalism, these groups will further have to rapidly
Coalesce into major movements a challenge, among other, for the Internet.

25. Fighting for Human Rights is combating the surplus powerlessness of
the have-nots by creating a movement that helps build committed, multi-
level action networks.

26. We need to explode the myth that things are just fine; they are
not. For this, our strategy, of necessity, must become more political;
that is an imperative set by how the world ticks. Power politics cannot simply
be ignored; we cannot look the other way; we have to deal with it.

27. It is not enough to go from People's Needs,
to their Entitlements, and from there to their Rights,
and then Passing Laws, hoping the latter are Enforced. This is considered
to be a soft approach in the new paradigm.

28. We need to start from the People's Felt Needs, translate those into
Concrete and Effective Demands, that foster People's Organizations, to
start Exercising (growing de-facto) Power, and then Consolidating (their
newly acquired) Power with that of other like-minded similar organiza-

29. The latter delineates the needed hard approach and path, because
what is needed is to counter a host of complex social and political is-
sues that are preventing people from improving their own well-being and
these are mostly related to control processes in society.

Claudio Schuftan,

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