Posts Tagged ‘10 reasons why we should protect children’s rights’

Why do we need to protect children’s rights?  Find the answer by reading this collection of quotes from people who have shown exemplary efforts to protect them.

1. It is an act of compassion that each of us must practice as citizens of this world.

“Great persons are able to do great kindnesses.” -Miguel de Cervantes

“The worst sin toward our fellow creatures is not to hate them but to be indifferent to them: that’s the essence of inhumanity.” -George Bernard Shaw

In my life time, I learned that  indifference- the opposite of compassion and empathy- is one of the reasons in making this world poor, lonely and unsafe to live. The lack of compassion to others causes suffering or even death to some.

We hear news of children who become victims of abuses like ending up as sex slaves, or being raped or even being murdered. These happen because of people’s indifference. Adults, whom children are expecting to protect them, do not perform their responsibilities. Sad truth is, these people whom they trust and respect are mostly the same who fail children’s expectations and are causing their mishap.

“Therefore, as God’s chosen people, holy and dearly loved, clothe yourselves with compassion…” -The Apostle Paul (Col 3:12)

The Word is clear: we must clothe ourselves with compassion. It is indeed, greatness too to practice kindness especially to the little ones, the helpless and the vulnerable.

We should also remember that no act of kindness, however small, is ever wasted (Aesop) since this always makes a difference- it blesses both the  receiver and the giver (Barbara de Angelis). Compassion does not only brings comfort to the receiver but also happiness to the giver. Quoting the Dalai Lama, “If you want others to be happy, practice compassion. If you want to be happy, practice compassion.”

What peaceful and happy world this could be if everyone is compassionate especially to children!

2. No one else will protect the children except the adults whom they depend on.

 “We’ve got to work to save our children and do it with full respect for the fact that if we don’t no one else is going to do it.”  -Dorothy Height

“I speak for those children who cannot speak for themselves, children who have absolutely nothing but their courage and their smiles, their wits and their dreams.” -Audrey Hepburn

Children whose brain is like a sponge, ready to soak up everything it touches, remember everything- the good and the bad ones that they experience in life. For these very reason, adults must be extra careful in teaching them or setting as an examples since young people see their parents, family, friends, teachers and sports or activity coaches as largely positive influences in their lives. What adults say or do to children leaves remarkable impact on how they will eventually turn as adolescents in  the long run: a child abused today can become social deviant tomorrow, or the child well taught today can become a great leader in the future.

3. This world we borrow from our children. Therefore, it is our moral obligation to make this earth a peaceful, healthy and safe place for them to live.

“We are the ancestors of our grandchildren. We look after them, just as our ancestors look after us. We aren’t here for ourselves. We are here for each other and  for the children of our grandchildren.” -Roy Sesana

We must recognize that children have vital role in nation-building; that we should promote and protect their physical, moral, spiritual, intellectual, emotional, psychological and social well-being (Philippine Constitution, Article II, Section 13); that we should guarantee the fundamental rights of every child from all forms of neglect, cruelty and other conditions  prejudicial to their developments (RA No. 9775, Section 2A).

4. Just like women, men, senior citizens, physically challenged, and indigenous culture, a child has rights, too.

“A child, like all other human beings, has inalienable rights.” -Lucrecia Mott

If we recognize that just like other human beings, children have inalienable rights too, it would be easier for adults to respect each child. That respect would somehow lead to hearing their voices  and taking action after hearing them. This is important especially in issues and concerns of the young generation. It is vital that their opinion matters. It is equally necessary that we support and extend help during their dire needs.

5. As adults of this generation, we must set good examples to children so that they may grow their faith in humanity and become great examples, too later.

“Train up a child in the way he should go and when he is old, he will not depart from it.” -Proverbs 22:6

 “Our generation has inherited an incredibly beautiful world from our parents and they from their parents.                            It is in our hands whether our children and their children inherit the same world.” -Richard Branson 

“Help us show children around the world that we can make a difference together.” -Bradley Whitford

In this real world, there are no super heroes to protect the abused children; only parents, teachers, friends and other support groups. When fear is prevalent, we only have each other to comfort; when there is slavery and abuses, again, we only have the rest of us to fight against these.

Why is it important that adults set good examples to children? So that they become the best persons they can be when they grow old. And why it is important that children  should grow their faith in humanity? Because if they don’t that will be the end of a better start for a brighter future.

6. If we speak in behalf of our children, we represent the same issues of humanity.

“…in serving the best interests of the children, we serve the best interest of all humanity.” -Carol Bellany

Have you heard the story of Ellah Joy Pique, a 6 year old victim in Cebu, who was kidnapped and later murdered? Police considers the angle of pedophilia and child pornography for her death. Her body was wrapped in white cloth, tied with wires and thrown in a cliff back in 2011. Many grief, showed support and up to now, are seeking justice for her death. Her story made her issue their issue, too. Now, many had been fighting to stop this cruelty from ever happening again not only to other children but to general public as well.

 7. If we keep blind to abuses, keep silent to suffering and keep indifferent to death  of morality, we are the same as the greedy, murderers and evil doers because we encourage them, not stop them from their  works.

“If we don’t stand up for children then we don’t stand for much”. -Marian Wright Edelman

“When the lives and the rights of children are at stake, there  must be no silent witnesses.” -Carol Bellamy

A meaningful quote from Elie Wiesel elaborating why indifference is an epitome of evil: The opposite of love is not hate, it’s indifference. The opposite of beauty is not ugliness, it’s indifference. The opposite of faith is not heresy, it’s indifference. And the opposite of life is not death, but indifference between life and death. 

This means that if we fail to care, we succeed the evil works. When we fail to expose the abusers because we don’t care for the victims,  then we are one of the accomplices. In the environment where hostility resides, we should take sides since at all times, neutrality benefits the oppressor and not the victims (Elie Wiesel).

 8. The way we treat our children reflects our moral system. 

“It was once said that the moral test of government is how it treats those who are in the dawn of life, the children; those who are in the twilight of their life, the elderly; and those who are in the shadows of life, the sick, the needy and the handicapped.” -Hubert Humphey

“Children reflects the quality of life… when our children are happy, then we are better as human beings.”                                   -Whoopi Goldberg

A beautiful quote also from Mahatma Gandhi which states that a nation’s greatness is tested by how it treats its weakest members, like the children, the elderly, the sick, the needy and the handicapped. So true especially for democratic society where the people’s voices should be heard since they are the ones who choose their  leaders through their votes. Although, children may not yet cast their numbers during election, it is equally important that their general welfare are taken care of.

9. Children are our future.

“There can be no global security without respect for children. We have to be more than just observers of children’s suffering; we have to be partners with them in their struggles.” -Landon Pearson

If we want to leave a better place for our children and grandchildren, we must teach and show today’s children concern: we must uphold their self- esteem, teach them right values of life, protect their general rights and provide them the same responsibility to make the world a beautiful, peaceful, healthy, and safe place to inhabit, one generation at a time.

10. As people who believe in Jesus Christ, we cannot be like Him if we don’t show compassion to others especially to children.

“Whoever causes one of these little ones who believe in Me, to sin, it would be better for him if a millstone were hung around his neck, and he were drowned in the depth of the sea”. -Jesus warns. Found in Matthew 18: 2-6

We must protect the rights of children not only because it is our moral obligation to do so as cosmopolitans but also as a children of the Divine creator. We must be compassionate, just as our Father is compassionate to us (Luke 6:36).

Sources:

http://www.topbibleverses.com

http://globalnation.inquirer.net/cebudailynews/news/view/20110401-328729/Police-seek-hold-departure-order-against-Cebuana-and–British-boyfriend

http://gervacio.wordpress.com/tag/crime/

http://en.wikiquote.org/wiki/Elie_Wiesel

http://www.betterworld.net/quotes/children-quotes-4.htm

http://www.tentmaker.org/Quotes/kindnessquotes.htm

http://www.brainyquote.com/quotes/keywords/indifference_2.html

http://www.chanrobles.com/philsupremelaw1.htm

Author’s Note:

This article is part of the author’s speech in an Anti- Child Pornography Forum on March 11, 2012 at Brgy. San Bartolome, Novaliches, Quezon City, Philippines.