The following learning activity can be used to spark discussion in class when used along with “Rights Activism in China”  by Ching Kwan Lee in  Contexts Summer 2008.

Below is a simplified list of the 30 human rights accorded to every human being in the Universal Declaration of Human Rights.  Place a “+” by the 5 human rights that you think are the most important and an “-” by the 5 rights that you think are the least important.

_________ Right to Equality
_________ Freedom from Discrimination
_________ Right to Life, Liberty, Personal Security
_________ Freedom from Slavery
_________ Freedom from Torture and Degrading Treatment
_________ Right to Recognition as a Person before the Law
_________ Right to Equality before the Law
_________ Right to Remedy by Competent Tribunal
_________ Freedom from Arbitrary Arrest and Exile
_________ Right to Fair Public Hearing
_________ Right to be Considered Innocent until Proven Guilty
_________ Freedom from Interference with Privacy, Family, Home and Correspondence
_________ Right to Free Movement in and out of the Country
_________ Right to Asylum in other Countries from Persecution
_________ Right to a Nationality and the Freedom to Change It
_________ Right to Marriage and Family
_________ Right to Own Property
_________ Freedom of Belief and Religion
_________ Freedom of Opinion and Information
_________ Right of Peaceful Assembly and Association
_________ Right to Participate in Government and in Free Elections
_________ Right to Social Security
_________ Right to Desirable Work and to Join Trade Unions
_________ Right to Rest and Leisure
_________ Right to Adequate Living Standard
_________ Right to Education
_________ Right to Participate in the Cultural Life of Community
_________ Right to a Social Order that Articulates this Document
_________ Community Duties Essential to Free and Full Development
_________ Freedom from State or Personal Interference in the above Rights

Questions to consider:

1.     Explain the rationale behind the rights you chose as most important and those that you listed as least important.

2.     How do you think your culture impacts what you view as important human rights?

3.     Are there any rights that you think should be included that are not on this list?  Are there any rights that you think are unnecessary?

4.     Does it seem like some rights are prioritized more than others today?