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Do we need extensive human rights when we have morals?

Human rights are what make us human and enable us to respect humans and what a human stands for. We have human rights for most things in our daily life.
A new right is that prisoners (in the UK) should have the right to vote in the General Election. This has produced a large amount of controversy which, therefore, means that we are questioning our earlier morals which we thought were correct? How can we trust our instinctive moral decisions if other people can provoke us to question them?


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    Nov 2 2012: Hi Freddie!
    "Do we need extensive human rights when we have morals?"

    I would say, that as human beings sharing this earth, human rights are natural for all of us to experience. That being said, however, it appears that some folks do not recognize the human rights of others, and need to be constantly reminded!

    I agree with Fritzie, that questioning our thoughts, feelings, ideas, opinions, beliefs, etc., is a good practice for all of us. As our world evolves, and we evolve within the earth structure, we often gain new information, which may cause us to change our previous beliefs regarding human rights and morals.

    For example, there was a time when a large percentage of people in our world thought it was perfectly ok to own slaves. Thankfully, we (humans) began to see that human rights and morality were being challenged with that belief.

    With the example you offer of whether or not those incarcerated have the right to vote or not... I do not perceive that we are questioning "morals" necessarily, but perhaps our previous decision regarding voting? In general, we (humans) seem to be questioning the value of punishment and taking away all the rights of those incarcerated. Does this practice help rehabilitate them? Or simply punish them? And what is the better choice?
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      Nov 2 2012: A thought to add to yours, Colleen, is that people who tend to call others immoral will likely benefit most, I think, from self-reflection.
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        Nov 2 2012: And a good thought it is Fritzie!

        We have some folks here on TED who like to tell us that we are not living a "moral" life because we do not accept THEIR god, and THEIR religious beliefs. They tell us all the time that we are going to hell because of this........LOL

        As I recall, from years of bible study and catholic indoctrination (long ago abandoned because it NEVER made sense to me), there is something in there which says... "Judge Not, Lest Ye Be Judged".

        Yes...absolutely...those who judge OTHERS to be immoral would benefit MOST from SELF-REFLECTION! EXCELLENT point Fritzie!!! They may also benefit from walking their talk:>)
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          Nov 2 2012: I was not thinking about TED but rather about broader society. I am sure there is a whole psychology surrounding what makes one person or group like to label others as immoral.
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        Nov 2 2012: Fritzie,
        I was thinking about the broader society as well, and since we are here, now, on TED, that is an example that came to mind. It appears that TED is a pretty good cross section of humanity?

        A psychology surrounding what makes one person or group like to label others as immoral or inferior? I think it's called the pecking order! I admit, that is not the psychological term....you get the idea I'm sure:>)
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          Nov 3 2012: Well, I would rather be immoral than amoral. Immoral is much more fun.
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      Nov 7 2012: Re: "Judge Not, Lest Ye Be Judged" - one of my favorite quotes, so frequently ignored by Christians.

      Here is an interesting study showing a strong positive correlation between homicides and dividing people into "good" and "evil" camps. Of course, those who judge are never in the evil camp. It's "the other guys".

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        Nov 7 2012: Interesting study Arkady.....thanks!

        A couple statements jump out at me...

        "Passionate attachment to religious group life encourages homicide"

        "When the moral and religious universe encompassing individuals involves cosmic struggles between benevolent and malevolent forces, moral struggles between "good guys" and "bad guys" and dichotomous choices between good and evil then there is little or no inclination to consider any middle ground, negotiation or flexibility in dealing with lessor conflicts and struggles in everyday life"

        "It may be that a religious cosmology with moral "wars" and "dueling deities" sets the stage for culture wars (Hunter), facilitate interpersonal wars and encourage people in conflict to think in terms of dueling contenders for righteosness".

        While I feel that many people in our world use religions and the holy books as valuable life quides, there seems to be some truth in this study regarding judging others. Perhaps that has to do with the "passionate attachment" of some people? And does this cause the inability to consider "middle ground, negotiation or flexibility"? It appears that it does.

        For example, we see the passionate attachment and inability to consider other perspectives with the abortion issue. Religious extremists say they object to killing the fetus, and with their objection, they are killing many health professionals and innocent people who are in their path when blowing up women's health clinics. That seems hypocritical, and perhaps their passion prevents them from seeing the hypocracy in their actions?

        They say their god is unconditionally loving with all people, and yet, some of us will be sent to hell because we do not embrace THEIR god?

        Yes indeed..."It may be that a religious cosmology...moral "wars" and "dueling deities" sets the stage for culture wars... facilitate interpersonal wars and encourage people in conflict to think in terms of dueling contenders for righteosness".
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          Nov 7 2012: Re: "Passionate attachment to religious group life encourages homicide" -- passionate attachment to a soccer team also seems to lead to violence. I think, this is a form of idolatry - worshiping the wrong thing.

          The article is interesting. These days, many people paint the whole religion black and portray it as the source of evil. Oddly, the article is pointing out that it's this very practice that causes strife. Some anti-religious folks seem to fall into the same pit from the other side.

          I think, religion is good when we use it to find and eradicate evil within ourselves. When we use it to find evil in others, we become evil ourselves.

          Abortion issue is fascinating. It's about a human being inside a human being. Which one do we favor? It's a wicked dilemma. It only leads to wicked choices. The only correct answer is "both" (getting rid of the dilemma itself). My favorite bumper sticker on this issue is "protect the rights of unborn women".

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