Posted by: James Atticus Bowden | February 7, 2011

Universal Rights Aren’t Universal

1948 Declaration

Our Founding Fathers wrote about Universal Rights.  They believed all men shared in Universal Rights.  Rights created by God.   Like the Rights from this 1948 Declaration.

Except these rights arose in one civilization.  From one culture.  Based on beliefs from one God.

When the rights are exercised by men from other civilizations, the results aren’t the same.   Women may not have the same rights as men.   Men and women who have different religions may not have the same freedoms as rights.   Just think, “Islam.”

I believe that God created Rights.  Man in his natural, pagan, state wants to be completely free.  The God-given Rights can apply to all humans – universally.  Can apply.

Universal Rights will apply universally when they are understood universally – in common.

To understand, really get, America’s God-given rights, one must understand Western Civilization.  One must understand the Enlightenment, Capitalism, Representative Democracy, the Rule of Law, and Judeo-Christian Culture.  One must understand the one, true, living God.

In 1948 the Men of the West had the confidence to write Universal Rights – which were all, clearly, Western Rights.  In 2011 it’s arrogance empowered by PC ignorance, not confidence, to presume rosy Rights happen when a dictator is deposed – in Egypt, Iraq, Afghanistan – or anywhere outside the West.



  1. Western Civilization, Christianity in particular, has much to recommend it over Islam. However, that declaration has a bittersweet message. Even in 1948 we had started to confuse privileges with rights.

  2. Citizen Tom, that confusion came straight out of the socialism is liberalism push from the 30s across Europe and the US.

  3. Jim:
    While I agree with your general premise about Western civilization and its roots in Christianity, I would say that the Enlightenment while beneficial in bringing an end to the Ancien Regime particularly the Divine Right of Kings in favor of republican democracy, it also produced the seeds of modernity and with the Age of Reason the dismissal of the supernatural in favor of only the natural. This directly led to Darwin and Marx. As you have previously written, there is a big difference between the American and French Revolutions.
    Rousseau’s premise that man is basically good contradicts the Biblical concept of original sin and leads to the idea that man is only “evil” because society or institutions such as the family, or church have made him so. This philosophical foundation, laid in the Enlightenment is precisely what was originally introduced in Genesis 3. Hence, man believes that he can perfect himself. This even carried over into Christianity in the Wesleyan concept of “Christian Perfection” and more recently in theological liberalism and liberation theology.
    There is a tendency in modernity to base everything on reason and what can be empirically proven. The eventual end of that is not just Darwin but Carl Sagan and his worship of the Cosmos.

    Basically, the key point I believe you are trying to make is that Christianity, which is based on the TRUTH, is the only foundation for securing our rights given to us by the Creator. Islam and other philosophies including naturalism lead to tyranny.
    My premise, whivh I believe is yours too is that it is not really Western Civilization but Christianiy that is the key. Western Civilization benefited only while it embraced Christian truth. When it moved beyond it to naturalism, it is now unable to defend itself. The British PM and German Kanzler are on to this but still haven’t connected the dots. The dots lead to Christ alone.

  4. Whatever culture, whatever nationality, whatever religion, whatever name we call our God, all MEN were created equal.

  5. PT:
    Unfortunately, all cultures, whatever nationality, whatever religion, don’t agree that all MEN are created egual. That is the point.

  6. DV: I agree that Christianity is the key or root of the thought that made Western and American Civilization. I’d add that our branch has names – like English, Protestant and Enlightenment that all shape it up.

    Thanks for your other comments -very much. Democracy among hyenas is a dangerous affair that is quite different than the Rule of Law from our American Civilization.

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