OP-ED: Having Faith in Fantasy: Why Universalism is the Future of International Human Rights

Source: 14th Session of the UN Human Rights Council

By Alisha Saxena
Contributing Writer

In the midst of extensive debates on how to actualize the power of international human rights law in the global community, two factions of thought have emerged: universalism and relativism. They differ not only in their definition of human rights, but also in their methodology to develop and execute human rights policies. As indicated in its name, universalism stresses that human rights are universal, in that they can and should apply to every individual in the world regardless of religious, cultural, or other differences; thus, its proponents believe in the power of international human rights legislation.

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How the Developing World is Coping with COVID-19: The Case of Bolivia

A Bolivian woman in La Paz covers her face with a mask to protect against COVID-19. 
Credits: Abad Miranda

By Olivia Bryan
Staff Writer

It seems that there isn’t anything new to be said that hasn’t been said already regarding COVID-19. Unprecedented. Once in a lifetime. Unforgettable. Most mainstream media coverage of the pandemic remains fixed on East Asia, Europe, and North America, the three geographical areas that have been hit the hardest. But viruses know no borders, and many smaller, poorer countries are being largely omitted from the coronavirus media narrative. These countries are often the ones most vulnerable to the virus’s externalities: lacking proper medical supplies, social welfare programs, and efficient governance to aid citizens’ health and well-being. 

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How COVID-19 is Affecting the Sex Work Industry

There is an industry that we tend to forget about during the COVID-19 pandemic, despite finding itself in every country on earth: the sex industry. 

by Isana Raja
Staff Writer

Sex work provides income for over 42 million people worldwide. However, due to the COVID-19 pandemic, this “close-contact” profession is now banned, rendering many distraught, unemployed, and at high risk of contraction of the virus. Sex work takes many forms, but prostitution —  being paid for sex —  seems to be the most relevant when dealing with government laws and legislation.  Since prostitution is legally regarded differently by each nation, sex workers are facing the repercussions of the pandemic in vastly different ways. But despite the inconsistencies in the way sex work functions across the globe, it is certain that the coronavirus is drastically changing the sex industry landscape. 

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