Another major area where discrimination has a knock-on effect on freedom of expression, is with regards to LGBT (lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender) people across the globe. They are discriminated against for traditional, especially religious, reasons, with countries like Malaysia and Jamaica claiming that homosexuality is simply “not in our culture” when clamping down on LGBT civil rights. The right to express one’s sexuality is an aspect of the right to freedom of expression both in itself (as an expression of identity) but also because in countries where LGBT rights are not respected, the cultural expression of such rights is often also a political act. Cultural events organised by the LGBT community, such as pride parades, find themselves banned from exercising their right to freedom of assembly and expression, which happened last October in Serbia and Moldova. LGBT-themed art is also often times censored. One example reported by Index took place in Uganda, where a play about a gay man was banned, and its British producer, David Cecil, jailed and later deported. Countries also adopt laws that ban or circumscribe the discussion of homosexualty. In Russia, the Duma recently voted in favor of a draft law to ban “homosexual propaganda”. The amendment, passed by an overwhelming majority, prohibits the “propaganda of homosexuality” (in a practical sense, the discussion of homosexually) to protect children. The bill would in effect seriously curtail the right to freedom of expression of LGBT people.
Full access to freedom of expression is difficult to achieve in the absence of universal education and literacy. Around the world, illiteracy and inadequate (or non-existent) education hits the poorest hardest – both because education is often private, and because in poor countries where it is provided by the state, the standard of education can be low. Women and girls in the developing world are the groups most affected by illiteracy. There are a number of factors contributing to this, including higher levels of poverty among women, with culture and tradition also playing a significant part. There are still a number of societies around the world where it simply is not accepted that girls should receive education at all, and certainly not higher education. While the gender gap in education has been decreasing over time, in 2009, there were still around 35 million girls out of primary education, compared to 31 million boys. Lack of education is still the single biggest contributing factor to high and persistent levels of illiteracy — making it the most basic barrier to freedom of expression. It stops people from effectively participating in society, as it hinders them from being able to read, write and share written information, and thus fully engage with a range of issues or debates. Women make up the majority (64 per cent) of the nearly 800 million illiterate people in the world today. UNHCHR resolution 2003/42 identified this as a contributing factor to constraints on women’s rights to freedom of expression.
As well as the impact of poverty, discrimination and religious and cultural factors, governments and local authorities often put in place more formal mechanisms which result in significant restrictions on access to freedom of expression for minority groups. This can come in the form of restrictions on minority languages, such as Kurdish in Turkey, or barriers to political participation, such as the Bosnian constitutional ban on Jews and Roma running for high office.
Refugees are one of the hardest hit groups of people in terms of facing significant and basic restrictions on freedom of expression. A report by the UN High Commissioner for Refugees on the political rights of refugees stated that they, “…like other aliens, are entitled to the same freedom of expression, association and assembly as citizens.” However, a 2005 report investigating the state of Italian immigration detention centres showed that those detained in Italy were given few opportunities for communication with the outside world. Similarly, allegations of arbitrary deprivation of liberty in Greek detention centres are to be examined by independent experts selected by the UN Human Rights Council later this year. These are only a few examples of fundamental barriers on refugees’ access to fully express themselves. This, of course, cannot be separated from the wider discrimination as outlined above. Refugees constitute a group which often face prejudice and racism. Research from Cardiff University has for instance shown that they do not have the platform to counter the overwhelmingly negative way in which they are portrayed in the UK media. Refugees have universal rights like all other people around the world — states must recognise this and must act to tackle discrimination in all forms.
The barriers to free expression discussed here show why exercising our right to free expression is not as simple as living in a democratic society that broadly respects rights. Barriers that block or inhibit access to freedom of expression exist all over the world, in various forms and to varying degrees. Through being denied a voice, these groups are being denied a fundamental right, are facing barriers to their active participation in society, and, in many cases, are facing additional limits on their ability and opportunity to play a part in improving their own lives. Tackling the barriers from poverty to discrimination to laws that limit access to freedom of expression is vital.
The Importance of Stress Management Essay
1037 Words5 Pages
The Importance of Stress Management
Stress today can be described as "that which disturbs a person's mental and physical well-being" (Morrison 1). Common symptoms of stress include chronic fatigue, changes in appetite, drug and/or alcohol abuse, difficulty sleeping, body aches, and changes in emotions (Cooper 1-2). And although stress is something that is inevitable, it can be controlled. Just about everything we do today creates stress, both good and bad. In the face paced and technological world we live in, stress management is key to survival as well as sanity.
Stress can be caused from numerous things for example, a death in the family, divorce, or loss of a job. But stress is also attributed to…show more content…
Stress is not only affecting individuals, but also affects how are businesses function and how our society operates (Morrison 1).
Stress can cause many things that affect a healthy body. Stress causes quick yet shallow breathing in which case, the body's cells are being deprived of oxygen. Stress will increase cholesterol levels and can also cause indigestion, heartburn, a decreased sex drive, and also arteriosclerosis (the hardening of the arteries). While these symptoms may seem minimal, stress can decrease the activity of white blood cells. Since the white blood cells fight off sicknesses and diseases, the immune system is affected by stress and can make the body more susceptible to colds, viruses, flues, and diseases (Morrison 2).
Stress can affect all aspects of one's mind and body. Behaviorally, stress can cause anger, excessive crying, depression, apprehension, increased alcohol use, mood swings, and even suicide. It can cause problems physically as well. Anorexia, fatigue, trembling, loss of appetite, and headaches are just a few of the symptoms that overly stressed individuals may experience (Morrison 2).
It is critical to understand important stress management skills. If stress is not dealt with, it can result in a burnout, or perhaps worse, "People who experience high levels of anxiety are four to five times more likely to die of a heart attack or stroke" (Morrison