A Good Start is Half the Work


In the wake of WWII, the Universal Declaration of Human Rights was drafted by nine people from around the world. On December 10, 1948, the the General Assembly adopted the Universal Declaration of Human Rights.  Eight nations abstained from the vote but none actively disagreed.

Hernán Santa Cruz of Chile, a member of the drafting sub-Committee, wrote about this occasion:

“I perceived clearly that I was participating in a truly significant historic event in which a consensus had been reached as to the supreme value of the human person, a value that did not originate in the decision of a worldly power, but rather in the fact of existing—which gave rise to the inalienable right to live free from want and oppression and to fully develop one’s personality.  In the Great Hall…there was an atmosphere of genuine solidarity and brotherhood among men and women from all latitudes, the like of which I have not seen again in any international setting.”

This is the first time in human history that we all officially agreed that all human beings are entitled to basic rights, simply by virtue of being alive.

In Irish there is an expression – “Tus maith, leath na hoibre,”  which translates as, “A good start is half the work.”

It was a good start.

                          Universal Declaration of Human Rights

Article 1.

  • All human beings are born free and equal in dignity and rights.They are endowed with reason and conscience and should act towards one another in a spirit of brotherhood.

13 comments on “A Good Start is Half the Work

  1. It serves us well to revisit these words considering what is going on in the world.

  2. I’d not heard of this. THANK YOU for posting. Yes, it’s a good start, but maybe not enough? How sad. This is something that everyone should know. Deep gratitude is in order!

  3. It’s a tremendous declaration. And in words it is so simple. Now, how to guarantee that it is protected and enacted with equality around the world. That’s seems to be so much more difficult…and that’s the tragedy. The words and the intent are there, but without equal determination to respect the words with action, I just don’t know! But we can do much as individuals, so the reminder of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights is very important. Debra

  4. granbee says:

    Oh how wonderful during Holy Week to reread the opening words to the Universal Declaration of Human Rights. I am reblogging this post immediately!

  5. granbee says:

    Reblogged this on granbee and commented:
    As we travel together to complete our Lenten Journey, dear friends, let us be reminded of one of the greatest achievements of the 20th Century:

  6. writinggomer says:

    To bad that the “world” does not hold to these words. Of course if the “world” followed Christ, these words of declaration would not be necessary.

  7. The Universal Declaration of Human Rights was considered one of Eleanor Roosevelt’s greatest accomplishments. I am blogging about her Tuesday April, 10. Thank you for sharing something that is so important!

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