Group Rights as Human Rights: A Liberal Approach to by Neus Torbisco Casals

By Neus Torbisco Casals

Liberal theories have lengthy insisted that cultural range in democratic societies will be accommodated via classical liberal instruments, specifically via person rights, they usually have usually rejected the claims of cultural minorities for workforce rights as intolerant. team Rights as Human Rights argues that any such rejection is faulty. in accordance with a radical research of the concept that of staff rights, it proposes to beat the dominant dichotomy among "individual" human rights and "collective" staff rights by means of spotting that staff rights additionally serve person pursuits. It additionally demanding situations the declare that staff rights, so understood, clash with the liberal precept of neutrality; to the contrary, those rights support observe the neutrality excellent as they counter cultural biases that exist in Western states. team rights need to be labeled as human rights simply because they reply to primary, and morally very important, human pursuits. examining the theories of Will Kymlicka and Charles Taylor as complementary instead of hostile, crew Rights as Human Rights sees team rights as anchored either within the worth of cultural belonging for the improvement of person autonomy and in every one person’s want for a acceptance of her id. This double beginning has very important effects for the scope of staff rights: it highlights their power not just in facing nationwide minorities but in addition with immigrant teams; and it permits to figure out how some distance such rights must also gain intolerant teams. Participation, no longer intervention, may still right here be the guideline if staff rights are to gain the liberal promise.

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9 The debate on the morality of group or collective rights, on the other hand, is also primarily focussed on rights that are aimed at protecting communities with those characteristics. 10 However, at the theoretical level, it is important to enquire to what extent these traits ought to possess a distinct weight—in contrast to other identity traits with which people also identify deeply. In this vein, some criticise the priority that is usually attached to ethnic, religious and linguistic elements in the debates about minorities.

But in order to contribute to the debate over minority rights, we may not need to conclusively answer these complex questions or take a stance on the merits of the different theories of the construction of the self and the moral status of groups. Not only can group rights be conceptualised in a less controversial manner but also, as noted above, the liberal opposition to these rights is often more political than metaphysical. The next chapter represents an attempt to develop alternative modes of understanding the notion of group rights.

Nevertheless, the perspective that underlies this concern (namely, the idea that the question of defining “minority” is analytically previous to elaborating a theory of group rights) is, in my view, inadequate. For it is based on implausible assumptions about both the correct way of approaching the issue of minority rights and the justification of group rights itself. In addition, the dominant approach produces two pernicious effects: first, it leads to envision arguments for or against group rights as taking a stance on more profound philosophical issues.

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