The Global Human Rights System

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The human rights system has been created by both top-down and bottom-up dynamics, by the relationship between the global and the local. Discuss.

The global human rights system has undoubtably been produced and sustained by both top-down and bottom-up dynamics which operate on global and local scales. It is because of these polar hierarchic systems that human rights violations against individuals and groups at a local level can be recognised and understood globally and acted on consequently using the appropriate channels. Despite being beneficial in this way, both top-down and bottom-up approaches are also fundamentally flawed in some of the ways they spread information and enforce strategies for the protection of victims from human rights
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The way in which top-down and and bottom-up approaches engage with and parallel to one another in their attempt to investigate human rights offence allegations and protect or provide relief for victims makes clear the advantages and disadvantages of both approaches. A top-down approach to human rights in which, ideally, regulations are decided upon at an international level and then implemented on a local level is essentially doomed to fail, at least in certain parts of the world. The fundamental reasons for this are the following; these regulations are usually in the form of formal law and will not be fully comprehended and practised in many parts of the world as they rely on a properly functioning and uncorrupt legal system to be in place; the values imposed by the human rights declared as equal for everyone may not concur with the beliefs of dominating cultural and political parties within certain communities; lastly as aforementioned, universally applying one human rights model to exceedingly diverse cultural communities on a global scale is inevitably problematic in its realisation(Ife, 2009, pp.131). The most beneficial elements of a top-down approach are essentially those that fuel its agenda; capital, mobility and the autonomy to make decisions that govern populations on an international scale.

Bottom-up movements, otherwise known as…