Thursday, December 4, 2008

International Human Rights Day

On December 10, 1948 the General Assembly of the United Nations adopted and proclaimed the Universal Declaration of Human Rights (UDHR). This month, we commemorate the 60th anniversary of that important occasion by observing International Human Rights Day on December 19, 2008.

I don't think there are many among us who don't care about human rights . . . but how many among us actually actively do something to protect human rights? I don't intend to sound preachy - I just want to point out that doing something needn't be time-consuming or expensive, and you don't need to physically protest or put yourself in harm's way. It can be as easy as putting your signature on a piece of paper - and, no, that paper doesn't have to be a check (although you can, of course, make donations too).

During this season of "giving and caring," so many of us are railing against the consumerism that seems to have engulfed and dehumanized us . . . yet we continue to buy presents for people who don't need them . . . and receive presents we don't need ourselves. So, why not do a little something that could help people who really need the help? Here's how:

Amnesty International
is a running a Global Write-a-Thon. They have posted 14 cases on their website for which you can write letters - and they even provide you with sample letters to get started. . . . It will only cost you a very small amount of time and the price of a few stamps.

Come on folks, you're already sending out boatloads of holiday cards this time of year anyway, right? How difficult would it be to just print out a few letters and stick them in your stack of outgoing mail?

Your signature is more powerful than you think . . .

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