Consider For A Moment by Africana

Fairness For All - How fair and how equal do we really want to be?

by The Consulting Editors at

That may sound like a silly question until you discover what happens behind
closed and secret doors. When "civilized" people claim to be "angels"
interested in fairness and equality, don't just take their word for it.
Their actions and deeds tell an entirely different story.

Take the example of a prominent lawyer who was then Chair of a prominent
legal organisation. His "pre-printed" presentation called upon the
organization to involve more women. At the actual presentation, when he saw
a minority lawyer at the "international" "Anglo Saxon" gathering, the Chair
improvised by adding, "We should also involve more minority lawyers - we
need to find suitable candidates."

Human Rights are not a matter for improvisation - they cannot be delivered
as "after thoughts." They are not about adding insult to injury by
patronizing the victims of discrimination.

Human Rights cannot be treated as a PR or a cosmetic exercise. "Sound bites"
may be wonderful for those who wish to be seen to be doing something about
the issues - but sound bites rarely bite at the real issues when all is said
and done.

Human Rights are not about grand offices and elevated officers or egos.
Human Rights are about the basics - that every individual should be accorded
the same dignity, respect and opportunities. When we fail to deliver very
simple basics, we have very little chance of becoming an advanced

Just because we claim to be civilized doesn't mean that we are.
Some argue that appointing "Champions" or "Conscience Keepers" is enough.

What happens if the Champion or "Conscience Keeper" is devoid of any real
conscience? Seems highly unlikely? A prominent Chair of an international
legal organization presided over gross injustices - a blind eye was turned
to blatant discrimination on the grounds of race, colour, sex, religion,
etc. The Chair had the audacity to "preach" to legal organizations around
the world that they should not discriminate!

Or what happens when the Champion enjoys the power for the sake of the power
itself - in other words, the Champion has a "cushy number" as long as the
boat is not rocked? Or the power is like that of other international
organizations - dependent upon the whims of "higher" authorities with their
own hidden agenda?

Overall View
The number of words we churn out can't measure how effective we are at
delivering Human Rights. Human Rights can't be measured by the financial or
human resources we deploy. They can only be judged and measured by the
actual realities on the ground. We have a long way to go.
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"Africana" is an international consultant, writer and mentor - his work is used by some of the best known corporations and educational institutions. Feedback may be sent to "Africana" via

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