Thomas Aquinas Universal Declaration Of Human Rights

Decent Essays
Concentration camp prisoners during World War II were subjected to cruel torture, starvation, and mental anguish. A reflection on this inhumane war and its abuse of rights brought into question which natural rights human beings are entitled. Thus, a document, called the “Universal Declaration of Human Rights,” was adopted by the United Nations that outlines which fundamental rights every being deserves . However, this document is largely ignored today. Many ignore this document because they do not agree with the concept of “human rights” or disagree on which rights are basic rights. Every being is entitled to natural human rights, and these rights are based upon the fulfillment of Thomas Aquinas’ three natural inclinations. The United States’…show more content…
Thomas Aquinas defined human happiness as the fulfillment of his three natural inclinations . These natural inclinations are as follows: first, simply living and self-preservation; second, animal life and reproducing and educating offspring; lastly, rational life and seeking truth and life in a political society . Humans have the fundamental right to fulfill these natural inclinations, which provide a way of specifying human rights. For example, in order to satisfy the first natural inclination, humans need clean water, access to food, etc. Some of these rights are protected by the law or are government funded, like the Clean Water Act, but others are not, like universal healthcare in the United States. Other human right topics are more heavily debated, such as whether marrying whomever you want, regardless of sex, age, or race, is considered a “right” or not. According to Aquinas’ second natural inclination, humans have a right to marry whomever they want if it results in the reproduction and education of children . However, the marriage must also allow for the fulfilling of other inclinations, like life in a political community. If the marriage denies these inclinations to its members, then it is not a natural right. Fulfilling these natural inclinations leads to human happiness, according to Aquinas , and thus, humans also have the natural right to human
Get Access