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Civil Rights Importance Theories Essay

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Updated: Apr 30th, 2020

Introduction

Freedom of expression, voting rights, and equal treatment are some of the civil rights that individuals enjoy in a sovereign state. Any interference with the rights is tantamount to social uprisings and movements that may be violent or non-violent. Some of the major civil rights movements are the 1950-1960 movements of the blacks in the American continent.

Critical race theory and the theory of three generations are some of the theories that elucidate on the significance and generations of civil rights. The theory of critical race champions for management and control of unequal treatment and discrimination of individuals using race, color, and ethnic backgrounds. On the other hand, the theory of three generations explains the types of civil rights that people like and their imperative nature using three generations. Therefore, the essay examines the importance of civil rights using critical race theory and the theory of three generations

Civil Rights

Civil rights refer to freedom of assembly, speech, and press. The rights also encompass the freedom to vote, expression, and equal treatment from the state or a nation. Lippert-Rasmussen (2005) asserts that when individuals of certain class receive unequal treatment because of their color, place of origin, or ethnic background, a case of discrimination emerges.

Discrimination against people in terms of deprivation of civil rights leads to social movements commonly known as civil right movements. The popular civil rights movements are the ones that the blacks living on the American continent exercised during the 1950s and 1960s. The movements championed for equal treatment and freedom from discriminations that led to denial of fair and just treatment from the state under that basis of their color and place of origin. It is imperative to understand that the movements can be peaceful, while others can be violent, leading to injuries and loss of lives.

Critical Race Theory

Critical race theory is a theory that scholars like Derrick Bell and Angela Harris advanced. Unequal treatment of Blacks in the former American continent catalyzed the need to develop the theory. The theory focuses on management and control of unequal treatment of individuals irrespective of their race, color, and place of origin.

According to Scheurich (2012), equal and just treatment of all individuals from negative practices such as racism and gender biases is very important. In addition, the theory highlights the significance of liberating people of all races from the challenges associated with racism and unfair treatment. Due to the problems related to racism and white privileges, unequally treated blacks in the society initiated a social movement to advocate for their civil rights and just treatment. The movement also promoted justice and liberation from all the challenges linked to racism that the whites exercised on them.

The Theory of Three Generations

Karel Vasak pioneered the theory of three generations that divides civil rights into three distinct generations, which are first, second, and third generations. The main points that Vasak highlights are equality, liberty, and fraternity. First-generation rights emphasize on the rights that protect individuals from the injustices of the state.

The rights emphasize on autonomy and participation in various activities of the state such as politics. According to Lippert-Rasmussen (2005), civil rights include voting rights, freedom of worship, fair trial, freedom of enjoying unemployment benefits, and freedom of expression and speech. The second-generation rights focus on equal treatment. The rights have economic, social, and cultural affiliations and incorporate security, employment, healthcare, and housing rights. The third-generation rights focus on issues like development and the environment.

Critical Race Theory The Theory of Three Generations
Pioneered by Angela Hariis and Derrick Bell Pioneered by Karel Vasak
Catalyzed by unequal treatment and discrimination The theory divides civil into three distinct generations
Discrimination can be under the basis of race, gender, or color The theory uses points or principles such as liberty, equity, and fraternity
The theory focuses on the unequal treatment of individuals First-generation rights emphasize on the rights that protect individuals from the injustices that a state can exercise on them.
White privilege and unfair treatment led to social movement among dissatisfied individuals The rights emphasize on autonomy and participation in various activities of the state such as politics.
The theory highlights the significance of liberating people of all races from the challenges associated with racism and unfair treatment Voting rights, freedom of worship, fair trial, freedom of enjoying unemployment benefits, and freedom of expression and speech are some of the privileges included in civil rights.
The movement also promoted justice and liberation from all the challenges linked to racism that the whites exercised on them The second-generation rights focus on equal treatment of people regardless of their color, gender, or ethnic background.
Discrimination is a negative practice, which leads to social movements and uprisings. The rights have economic, social, and cultural affiliations and incorporate security, employment, healthcare, and housing privileges
The third-generation rights focus on freedoms related to issues like development and environment

Conclusion

Since historic times, people have advocated for privileges such as equal treatment, justice, and freedom of expression. These privileges are part of the civil rights that theories like critical race and three generations promote. Civil rights are essential to the livelihoods of individuals because they facilitate fair treatment, equity, and fraternity of every individual in a state or a nation.

While critical race theory champions for fair treatment and equity for all, the theory of three generations divides civil rights into three generations and uses factors like liberty and equity to present the vital nature of civil rights. From the theories, it is evident that civil rights are crucial in human lives and their denial leads to social movements and uprisings such as the movements for black liberation witnessed in the American continent during 1950-1960s.

References

Lippert-Rasmussen, K. (2005). Deontology, Responsibility, and Equality. Chicago: Museum Tusculanum Press.

Scheurich, J. (2012). Anti-Racist Scholarship: An Advocacy. New York: SUNY Press.

Appendix

Both the critical rights theory and the theory of three generations advocate for equal treatment, justice, and fairness for all individuals regardless of their race, gender, color, or place of origin.

Civil rights graph.
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IvyPanda. (2020) 'Civil Rights Importance Theories'. 30 April.

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