Passion about human rights ignited in Guatemala

    How I became passionate about human rights for career development? Is human rights important in my life and does this represent ideally of who I am on the basis of career professionalism and at academic level? The answers to all these are powerful. Being powerful in representing the passion about human rights is to reflect about who truly I am and it is being reflected within my mind and my heart when seeing the human rights injustices.

    Passions about human rights started on the first day arriving in Guatemala City, Guatemala for a business trip in the year of 2012 during the summer time. On this business trip related with my academic course, I was there being represented as Student Ambassador for the United Nations (UN). My professors often kept telling me that my classmates and I shall get prepared for this country despite of security issues related with drug trafficking going on. Many said it is dangerous country and many were concerned about how I will make it there with communication regarding of my deafness however it did not prevent me from going to this business trip. I successfully did find a note-taker who was able to take notes from Spanish to English and vice versa on the computer. The tasks to carry for the business trip as Student Ambassador for the UN was paramount. The goal is to achieve in raising the advocacy issue with local NGOs /civil society within governmental level about human rights with Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) being promoted by the UN in Guatemala. Indeed the tasks were significant to be fulfilled however I will not demonstrate here about the tasks given to me for this business trip. The idea is to focus on the question of why my passions on human rights have ignited me in this particular country. I am sure that some of you may have heard or learned about the history involving the civil wars with genocidal massacres between 1960s and 1980s in Guatemala. Once knowing the historical background of this country among the textbooks so well and not knowing in a reality with the actual truths that have happened there within these years, I was incredulously in total shock to see human rights injustices to be still occurred in the year of 2012. Traveling with minibus to visit different NGOs and meet NGOs representatives, survivors, victims and governmental representatives, I was highly impacted by their stories and even though to see in a reality of what position this country was in. Yes, the country did experience lots of issues regarding of human rights, civil rights, labor right, women’s rights, LGBTQ rights and environmental rights. Witnessing the discrimination ongoing in the Guatemalan society with Mayan people and European born citizens of Guatemala including the civil rights violations and inequality being presented have hit me harder to see the real picture. The issues are lot to demonstrate. Mayan people are fighting for their rights – land ownership, health care access based on their cultural beliefs, educational access with their tribal languages, cultural and religious practices related with agricultural things and many more. On the other level, myself being on this business trip was the thing I was not prepared to witness in the actual events of recovering the genocidal massacres of where Guatemalan government did such horrendous crimes between 1960s and 1980s. The genocide massacres was demonstrated by the Guatemalan government against Mayan people who were conspired in working towards a communist coup. The point is that it was the time that the authorities even from the military level have revealed with heavy burden where the hidden genocidal massacres are so the human remains of loved ones can be properly returned with a good burial process. Guatemalan Forensic Anthropology Foundation is one of the NGOs to visit and show us the genocidal massacres including to hear and to learn about the victims’ stories. Showing the actual things and speaking to the representatives of this NGOs, I was appalled and my blood was raging. I have put many thoughts about this matter and I have asked about what I shall do about this in my life. I care about the words LAW and JUSTICE but how these words can be applied to the situation I have witnessed in Guatemala. From this clear picture, I have decided to become an advocate in the field of human rights.

    Living in this life where the world is unfair, I came to the realization that my life should be based on living for a good purpose to achieve in my career. The purpose being build along my studies is to work in the field of human rights. My personality is reflected to look upon the law being enshrined and the justice to be well served with a good dignity. My soul spirits is build in serving for society the human rights law with a fair justice. My calling for human rights is that it is fundamental prerequisites for each human beings leading a minimally good life. Having said this, I say in a clear point that in every single’s life is important to exist having human rights based on legal framework in which it is to promote the respect of its own norms. In a society lives are to be based on total equality, fair justice and human rights violations including civil rights/political and economic rights being prevented and the rights to be well guarded from any future harms/damages on each individual being. With this realization and with my passion for human rights, the only way I long for is to advocate for promoting human rights with total justice, equality and fairness being provided within the society. A wise man once said that “a right is not what someone gives, it is what no one can take from you”. Basically, we are born as human beings and we have rights inherent in that reality with dignity and worth of life that exists prior to the law and it is our duty to serve for the evolution of human rights movement with the humanity struggle toward creating a better world. We have the voice and we shall never silence these rights. We shall make our rights aloud serving with total responsibility via education, via advocacy work and via people’s voices for their rights with deep teaching of historical background and legal thinking/analysis of how to make a better world with better protection of human rights norms.

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