How Human Rights and Economy Coexist

Human Rights are, literally, the rights that one has simply because one is a human being. Human rights are equal rights: one either is or is not a human being, and therefore has the same human rights as everyone else (or none at all). In a nation, human rights are legally protected by its local jurisdictions by its human rights statutes. And the object of human rights can be claimed as “ordinary” legal rights in most national legal system. While a well-established legal system supports the good performance of economy, thus economic performance has strong relationship with Human Rights.

Human Rights and Productivity

A company could restrict its employee to speak to media on behalf of company in order to protect the image of company. However, a company can’t restrict its employee to speak individually after office hour or in personal social media account. This has no difference from restricting freedom of speech. So, what happen if a company cross the line of human rights? Employee of a company may feel being offended as an employee work for a company based on an employment contract which “normally” do not include any restriction of Human Rights. When majority of employee feel being offended, the loyalty and motivation to work for a company likely decrease as the employee no longer feel that they are on the same boat as company. There are good companies encourage employee to speak out their idea or feeling which bring back positive result on business performance. Unfortunately, some industry is highly regulated which have to provide guidance on employee speaking such as bank that do not allow employee to be interviewed to avoid any misinterpretation on personal opinion. The same situation applies to the economy, productivity of an economy likely decreases and ultimately affect the growth rate and competitiveness while eligible labors of an economy do not feel they are on the same boat as the society.

Human Rights and Creativity

Creativity represent the ability to produce a brand-new idea or use of original and unusual ideas to solve a problem. However, creativity always come after the basic needs of a human such as food, water, sex. etc. In layman’s terms, a human need to satisfy its hunger, security and relationship before seeking for self-esteem. Refer to the Maslow’s hierarchy of needs, Creativity belong to Self-Actualization which is at the top of the Hierarchy while Safety belong to second bottom level. We could imagine if a society has no protection on security of body by a nation, no citizen would pursue self-esteem through its creativity which would further convert to productivity and economic value. In economic terms, productivity drive the economic growth which could be induced by innovative products, new management system, new technologies or new industries. In the mid-18th century, Europe benefited from scientific research and industrial revolution from their innovative invention. The history prove that creativity is a key to economic success.

Maslow’s hierarchy of needs : https://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Maslow%27s_hierarchy_of_needs.svg

Human Rights and Stability of Society

It is no doubt that stability of a society is a key to economic growth because stability is a main concern of foreign direct investment which is a driving factor to economic input. Every nation has annual substantial investment on international marketing to attract foreign direct investment in order to provide additional stimulation to the economy. What factors form a stable society? Low criminal rate, stable inflation, well-established legal system, fair market practice, etc, are the factors to form a stable society. All these factors are proven by history in a nation to international market. Reputation and recognition of a successful mechanism of a stable society cannot be built by money but built by its citizens with integrity, culture and common value. However, an appeal to human rights usually testifies to the absence of enforceable positive legal rights and suggests that everything else has been tried and failed. The appeal, or protest, over human right would have negative impact on confidence over the abovementioned factors to the stable society.

In conclusion, although there is no direct relationship of human rights and economy, a stable society with well protection of human rights would benefit on the sustainable economic growth of a nation. The well protection of human rights means the legal system should have a fair and reachable channel to everyone as human to protect their rights because the object is a human. Any unfair or prejudice of legal or governmental system to single group of persons would cause the offensive feeling of a citizen which may cause the mangle of society between groups with different views. From the past thousand years of history, there is no perfect mechanism to avoid confrontation of a society. Nonetheless, the beauty of human being is communication and learning capability. There is always a solution to solve the divergence.

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