Philosophy of Human Rights: Right to Life as an Absolute Right

One of the mysteries of constitutional and human rights law is whether or not there are any of the rights that might absolute by any chance. The question is crucial not only for realistic reasons but also for the of human’s theory and legitimate rights: an absolute right puts in place a disappearance from what is the ‘default’ in human and constitutional rights law around the whole world, namely the approach of proportionality according to which an intrusion with a right is defensible if it serves a justifiable goal and is in proportion to that goal. This paper sheds some light on the subject by spotting on the right to life.


One of the puzzles of constitutional and human rights law is whether we have any

of the rights that are absolute, that is, rights that no one can ever interfere with. Some of the applicants that comes to our brain are the right not to be made to suffer and the right to life. The query of absolute rights strikes upon subjects that have become highly relevant in practical especially because the attacks by terrorist and the consequent changes in the approaches of some nations towards killings and torture, and this if unaided would value a close analysis. But in addition, the issue is vital for the theory of constitutional and human rights. Few thoughts have extended as quickly and saturated the whole area of law as methodically as the approach of proportionality in legitimate rights law around the whole world.


The taking of another person’s life has been highly criticized by most world philosophies and religions over the centuries. The international rights of human law has therefore sought to support this most sacred of rights in a number of agreements. The life of a person is clearly defended from being subjectively taken by the state. The right to life is never, nevertheless, as sacrosanct as it might appear at first sight. There are a number of conditions where nations may deny people of life itself and to which intercontinental law of human rights doesn’t increase an objection. The use of the death penalty is one of the examples. Rights of human law does not go against the use of the deaths penalty as a punishment for wrongs but does allow its seek and abolition to limit its use.

The use of aggression in self-defense falls at the bottom of other validations for the taking of people’s life. Killing is allowed when there is war saving for the killing of prisoners and civilians of war. The law of human rights thus tries to retort the myriad of moral dilemmas hoisted by the life’s right by launching a range of exhortations and prohibitions.

Every man has the intrinsic right to life and this living right must be defended by law. Nevertheless, this right is not as inviolable and sacrosanct as it sounds. The main standard in rights of human law is that there is no person that shall be randomly depressed of the meaning of life that states can take a person’s life providing procedures and laws are followed. There are several situations where a state may depress individuals of their lives without having to breach the international law of the human rights. In different cases, these omissions are based on the basis that hostility used in self-defense is reasonable. Examples include:
– obligation of the death penalty;
– Giving it is a product of the process of judicial and doesn’t contravene definite minimum safeguards that are imposed by the human law rights.
– deaths that result from a warfare that is lawful i.e. war which is in a position to meets the principles of international humanitarian law and doesn’t aim at protected persons e.g. prisoners and civilians of war;
– some documents of human rights (the Convention of European on the Rights of Human, for instance) give other conditions where deficiency of life does not breach the convention. Deficiency of the life coming from the use of physical force which is not more than completely necessary:

(a) In the protection of any individual from unlawful violence;

(b) To make it possible to effect an arrest that is lawful or to defend the escape of an individual that has lawfully been detained;

(c) In the action that has lawfully been taken for the principle of quelling an insurrection and a riot. Human rights law is a bit silent on other areas that are controversial regarding to the right to life, known as abortion and the real right of the child who are still inborn and euthanasia.

The capital punishment or death penalty as it is well known goes on being to be practiced and legitimate in several states around this world. Some nations have prohibited the penalty of death except for most tremendous cases e.g. crimes that are committed during a war. Other nations while they might not have proscribed the death penalty are in abolitionist by not having to sentence the offenders to death. Some of the most basic human rights activism, for instance, by Amnesty International that is concerned with protecting the political prisoners from the act of being verdict to death for their beliefs in politics.

The penalty of death might seem to have a breach of the right to life but the human rights law lies diminutive of persisting that it does. It leaves states the alternative to inflict the penalty of death but urges them towards elimination and also inflicts some limits on the way that the death penalty can be inflicted. Capital punishment:
– May only be inflicted for the serious crimes that are pursuant to the final judgment which is delivered by a court and giving it is not different to the supplies of human rights law, for example, not a genocide crime.
– Anyone who has been sentenced to death is allowed to seek commutation or pardon the sentence;
– Death sentence can’t be imposed on anyone who is below the age of eighteen or carried out on a women who is pregnant.

Even for nations that have agreed to eliminate the penalty of the death, the law of human rights seems ambiguous, making them in some statutes to come up with reservations sustaining the right to use the penalty of death at times of the war for instance. At the very same time, the death penalty’s use is completely proscribed from use by the different criminal courts internationally, like the Intercontinental Criminal Tribunal for the previous Yugoslavia, the Intercontinental Criminal Tribunal for the country of Rwanda and the Global Criminal Court.

As per the activists of the human rights, the penalty of death defies these rights. Many States has scheduled on retentionist nations to set up a suspension on capital penalty with a vision of its abolition. Nations which do not do that face substantial political and moral pressure. The Worldwide Human Rights Declaration prohibits torment and other inhuman, cruel and degrading punishment. Nation have argued that “improved interrogation techniques”, which leads to afflict, are important for national security. The activists of human rights have also condemned some techniques used to discipline criminal offenders. For instance, corporal punishment is considered by some as a breach of human rights. For example, there is caning, used in Brunei, Singapore and Malaysia and deemed by Amnesty International to be degrading cruel and inhuman punishment. In some nations, life detainment without parole is also taken to be unusual and cruel punishment. Other observations, such as the brutality of the police and the impunity for the violators of human rights and are also observed as issues human rights.

International law never outlaws all the types of violence and warfare. The right to life in such conditions is not absolute. Humanitarian international law seeks to inflict restrictions on different ways that the violence can be put in practice at times of conflict. Particular categories of individuals, combatants or civilians, who have decided to put down their arms or are offended, are regarded to as protected. The right to life of these groupings is upheld and can be breached for instance, by arbitrary shelling or purposeful execution or rejection of access to water, medicine or food.

            Human rights are pictured as egalitarian and universal, with all individuals having equivalent rights by high merit of being human. These rights exist as legal rights or as natural right, in both international and national. The principle of human rights in international law, within international practice, regional and global institutions, in the principles of nations and the activities of organizations that are non-governmental has ever been a keystone of policy of public around the whole world. It has for quite sometime been said that: “if the discourse of public peacetime global community can be said to have a universal moral verbal communication, it is that of human rights. Nevertheless, the strong claims that are made by the human rights doctrine goes on provoking considerable cynicism, contest about the nature, justifications and content of human rights prolong to this day.

Rights of an individual are not to be returned using force to nations where their lives may turn to be in danger are guarded in that particular situations, also recognize as the right towards non-refoulement (Ishay, 2008). Asylum-seekers and the refugees are protected if they meet such a danger on the base of their religion, medicine, race, nationality, membership or political opinion of a certain social group.

            When speaking about the kids, the right to life can as well mean the right towards their survival. The law human rights don’t allow the use of the penalty of death for children. Nevertheless, the rights of a child treaty inflict another responsibility on states to come across the basic wants of the kid in terms of health, food, nutrition, shelter etc. to enhance the survival of the child.
            The infringement of the right to life may be carried out by the people who are acting nowhere in the official dispatch of the administration e.g. paramilitary teams, civil defense or even other personal forces. They may take place outside the police forces and official military but are considered to be representatives of the state because they are always set up and monitored by the authorities to work in conditions of disturbance or internal conflict. They are hence subject to search for violations of human rights in the same way.

            The casualties of extrajudicial, arbitrary or summary executions are given the right to adequate reimbursement from the country where the defiance was committed. Yielding reimbursement is not the same as the additional responsibility on states to lead investigations and discipline the perpetrators.

            The global legal mechanisms take the appearance of a treaty (also known as agreement, protocol or convention) that joins the conventional states to the terms that has been negotiated. When the negotiations have been completed, the transcript of a treaty is set up as a definitive and authentic and is “signed” by the agents of states (Glendon, 2004). A state can hence agree to be jump to a treaty in different ways. The most common being the accession and ratification. A new agreement is ratified by those nations that have entered into a negotiation. A nation that has not involved itself in the concessions may later consent to the treaty. The agreement gets into force, or turn out to be valid, when a determined number of nations have acceded or ratified to the treaty.

            When a state accedes or ratifies a treaty, that nation may create reservations to a number of articles of the agreement, unless the reservations are not allowed by the treaty. Reservations may be reserved at any time. In some states, the international agreement take preference over the national law; in others a certain law may be needed to give a ratified global agreement the ability of a national law. Practically all the nations that have acceded or ratified to an intercontinental treaty have to change existing laws, issue decrees or bring into being a new legislation for the treaty to be completely effective on the states territory.

            The binding agreements can be used to make the governments to have respect on the provisions of the treaty that are vital to the human right to life. The non-binding mechanisms such as resolutions and declarations can be used in applicable situations to humiliate governments by unenthusiastic public discloser; governments who always care about their global image may accordingly adapt their own policies. The following are the intercontinental treaties, commitments and declarations that establish standards for the safety of the right to life.

Right to life has been an absolute right. One should never be made to suffer or lose his or her life. This follows the fact that an absolute right takes away the ‘default’ in human and constitutional rights law in the contemporary world.

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