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(7) What non-exploitative labor standards have been established by the International Labor Organization (ILO)?
Internationally agreed upon standards have been developed through the International Labor Organization (ILO). This organization, created in 1919, works with alongside (and with) the United Nations. So international labor standards work much like women’s rights—there’s a strong system of promoting rights, but in the end it’s up to each country to implement the standards. Labor standards include things that sound familiar to us: absence of forced labor and child labor; absence of discrimination; being free to engage in collective bargaining (form a union); adequate and regular wages; a limit on hours; safety on the job. While governments are often pushed by organizations like the ILO to enforce their own minimum wage laws, people with a fair labor perspective are more interested in what’s known as a “living wage.” A Wikipedia entry on this topic uses defines it as follows: Living wage is a term used to describe the minimum hourly wage necessary for an individual to meet basic needs, including shelter, food and clothing.
(9) What’s the difference between fair trade and free trade?
Fair trade describes an economic system that aims at a fair exchange between producers and consumers. This vision of a “fair” economy is proposed in opposition to the concept of “free trade,” since one basic principle of free trade is the idea that buyers should try to get as good a deal for themselves as possible, no matter how unfair that might be to the producer. In contrast to that, the producer of goods in a fair trade relationship is typically guaranteed the following: prices that are ¼ to 1/3 above the retail price, which is always a higher price than they’d receive from a regular buyer; more control over production and distribution decisions; prices that help individuals to get beyond survival needs, and help communities to construct clinics, schools, water systems, etc; producers are provided with business training and resources, including such things as access to internet marketing. The Fair Trade movement is more popular in Britain and Europe than in the U.S., but it has been steadily growing in the U.S. during the past decade
(10) According to the US State Department’s Trafficking in Persons (TIP) Report, sex trafficking constitutes about what percent of human trafficking?
Sex trafficking constitutes about 11% of human trafficking
(11) Over the last three years in Minnesota, about what percent of all trafficking victims were victims of sex trafficking?
According to a 2008 a study of trafficking in Minnesota, no reliable data exist on the extent of trafficking in this state. But there is data on the number of victims that were treated by “service providers” in Minnesota: over a three-year period, they handled 154 labor trafficking victims, and 637 sex trafficking victims.
(12) How is human trafficking defined in the UN Protocol to Prevent, Suppress and Punish Trafficking in Persons? (Use the abbreviated version given in the Lecture Notes.)
An internationally agreed upon definition can be found in the UN Protocol to Prevent, Suppress and Punish Trafficking in Persons. Here’s a shortened version: It is the recruitment, transporting, or receipt of persons, obtained by means of threats, force, deception or payment, for the purpose of exploitation. Trafficking includes “myriad forms of enslavement,” such as forced labor, forced child labor, child soldiers, debt bondage, involuntary domestic servitude, sex tourism and the removal of organs. Under circumstances described above, the consent of a victim of trafficking is irrelevant
(14) What are examples of things being done at an international level to curtail human trafficking?
A UN trafficking protocol was adopted in 2000, at in meeting in Palermo, Italy. (The Palermo Protocol.) This is a global, legally binding treaty, the purpose of which is to facilitate national cooperation in investigating and prosecuting trafficking in persons. But as we know, and UN Secretary General Ban Ki-Moon recently reminded us, “it will take resources to build a bridge from words to deeds.” In this case he was speaking specifically about the UN Trust Fund on Human Trafficking, which provides aid to victims of trafficking. In 2006, at an international meeting of political, business and activist organizations, a comprehensive compliance program for businesses was established. These guidelines are known as the “Athens Ethical Principles.” The situation is similar to what we saw with sweatshops: large companies obtain their products through complicated chains of suppliers. They may be unwitting buyers of goods produced with forced labor. These guidelines describe policies and processes that would help businesses avoid using forced labor.
(13) According to the US State Department’s TIP Report, what are the primary causes of human trafficking?
A major factor is extreme poverty, which forces families to sell their children to traffickers. The World Bank estimates that about a billion people go without sufficient food on a daily basis. But according to the US State Department 2011 Trafficking in Persons (TIP) Report, trafficking is highest among those who have become empowered enough to aspire to a better life, but with few good options for fulfilling those aspirations. They may have attended a girls’ school, and now feel overeducated for life in their villages. They may have seen someone return home with money to provide for their families. They may have seen television shows that depict city life as exciting. This desire for better opportunities is fueling a huge migration from rural areas to the cities, or impoverished parts of the world to richer areas. Traffickers take advantage of these migration patterns. But economic migration and other social factors do not cause trafficking. “If nobody paid for sex, sex trafficking would not exist. If nobody paid for goods produced with any amount of slavery, forced labor in manufacturing would be thing of the past.” (2011 TIP Report) It is the demand for cheap goods, services, labor and sex that fuels trafficking.
(15) What are examples of things being done by the US federal government to curtail human trafficking?
The U.S. State Department produces an annual report on trafficking, ranking countries around the world on how well they are doing controlling this crime. A new feature of the 2011 report was an account of what the U.S. is itself doing! It also has a new focus on governments as buyers. The U.S. Department of Labor has recently begun annual reports as well. The 2011 report, titled “List of Goods Produced by Child Labor or Forced Labor,” identifies 130 goods, produced in 71 countries.
(16) What examples of things being done by states in the US to curtail human trafficking?
The California Transparency in Supply Chains Act of 2010 requires retail sellers and manufacturers to publicly disclose their efforts to eradicate slavery and human trafficking throughout their direct supply chains. It applies to companies with more than $100 million in annual worldwide gross receipts. These companies represent about 87% of the economic activity in California, which has the 8th largest economy in the world. Minnesota has recently adopted and revised laws that address trafficking. The MN Office of Justice Programs is required to gather and assess data, producing a biennial report on trafficking in Minnesota. Young Native American women have received special attention on this issue, being disproportionately victimized by sex trafficking. The 2010 report emphasizes the need to establish better recordkeeping processes by law enforcement personnel and service provides, and training programs for these folks as well. Although the report describes Minnesota as “at the forefront” in addressing this issue, it looks like the state is really at the early stages of organizing a systematic response
(19) What is the basis of the Dalai Lama’s common vision of a good society?
All human beings seek happiness and try to avoid suffering.
20) What is the basis of the Dalai Lama’s belief in universal responsibility?
real progress requires universal responsibility. Each individual, every business, and all governments must recognize the role they play in contributing to the global vision of a good society.
(21) From a Buddhist perspective, what is the key to acceptance of universal responsibility, and progress in creating a morally good global community?
From a Buddhist perspective, the key to progress is love and compassion, especially for those less fortunate than ourselves. Compassion for others is often undercut by the mistaken belief that causing pain to others leads to our own happiness, or the belief that our own happiness is more important than the happiness of others—that their happiness has no significance. But this is not true. In the long run, causing harm to others makes people anxious, fearful and suspicious. Emotions such as these make people unhappy
(26) What moral vision provides a philosophical basis for human rights claims?
The vision begins with a biological account of what sets our species apart from others—the range and depth of human consciousness. Human consciousness includes capabilities that enable us to choose values that shape our identities, and to construct frameworks that give meaning to our lives. Exercising these capabilities requires some degree of freedom—being allowed to choose values, etc. Since some degree of freedom is necessary to live as a human being, the function of human rights is to create a sphere of freedom around each person.
(27) When, and by whom, was the Universal Declaration of Human Rights (UDHR) adopted?
The UDHR was adopted by the United Nations (UN) General Assembly in 1948.
(28) What is the moral basis of the UDHR, as set out in its Preamble?
The UDHR is based on recognition of the dignity and worth of the human person. And on the inherent dignity, and equal and inalienable rights, of all members of the human family.
(29) Why do the authors of the White House Project Report consider a critical mass important?
Once women reach a critical mass in an organization, people stop seeing them as women and start evaluating their work as managers (or whatever their job is).
(31) Under what circumstances did the Qur’an come into existence?
The Qur’an was dictated to Muhammad by the angel Gabriel.
(32) What is Shari’a? During what time period, and under what circumstances, did it come into existence?
Shari’a was produced by legal scholars working in various centers, where they discussed their views on the meaning of the Qur’an and Sunna.
(33) Why does An-Na’im believe fundamentalists, who reject the idea that Shari’a can be revised in light of contemporary interpretations of the Qur’an, are wrong?
A diversity of opinion is found in the Shari’a, between various schools of thought, and also among individuals within particular schools of Islamic law. The original founding jurists were not attempting to establish permanent opinions of general application. The practice of evolving interpretations is firmly rooted in the history of Islam. In theory, each Muslim is entitled to follow whatever view is acceptable to her/his private conscience.
(34) What strategies for reinterpretation of the Qur’an does An-Nai’im propose, and what role for nonMuslims does An-Na’im suggest in this process?
Qur’anic verses that speak of the honor and dignity of all humankind, all children of Adam, should be emphasized. And Qur’anic verses that support the subordination of women should be understood as applying only to historical contexts of the past
(35) Verse 4:34 of the Qur’an: “Men have qawama [guardianship and authority] over women because of the advantage they [men] have over them [women] and because they [men] spend their property in supporting them [women].” Why does An-Na’im believe
In today’s societies, physical strength is no longer essential for survival, or even successful participation in a community. Furthermore, women are no longer economically dependent on men.
(36) Why are you being asked to learn so much factual information about the United Nations and international human rights treaties in a philosophy class?
Understanding the United Nations and international human rights treaties is important for seriously addressing philosophical questions about how women ought to be treated, and who is responsible for ensuring that women are treated as they ought to be. Some philosophical questions are partially empirical. For instance, philosophical judgments about responsibility require a realistic understanding of the complex causal relationships that result in various sorts of injustice. The United Nations has been developing international standards of justice, and mechanisms for enforcing them, since the inception of the organization.
(37) Which set of documents is collectively referred to as the “International Bill of Rights”?
The Universal Declaration of Human Rights, the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights, and the International Covenant on Economic Social and Cultural Rights.
(38) What does the phrase “progressive realization of human rights” mean?
International human rights law recognizes the fact that it often takes a lot of time and money to create a society in which human rights are adequately respected, so countries that ratify human rights treaties are expected only to show that they are taking steps to “progressively realize” that goal.
(39) What is the primary enforcement mechanism for international human rights treaties?
The primary enforcement mechanism is the obligation ratifying countries accept to create national (domestic) legislation protecting the rights covered in the treaty. In this way, treaties are enforced by each country’s own system of law enforcement.
40) What secondary enforcement mechanism has been created to help ensure that international human rights treaties are implemented?
Many international human rights treaties establish a special standing committee that is charged with monitoring implementation in countries that have ratified that particular treaty. Countries that ratify a treaty accept an obligation to submit periodic reports that provide information on the extent to which the relevant human rights are actually protected. Every few years, a committee of relevant human rights experts review progress made by each country that has ratified a treaty. Part of this review process is open to the public, which exposes the governments of these countries to world public opinion. This creates some incentive for government leaders to correct serious human rights problems.
(44) At the time Roe v Wade was argued (1971), the Texas statutes pertaining to abortion had been in effect in a majority of states for approximately a century. What general description of those statutes does Justice Blackmun give on pages 47-48?
The Texas statute makes it a crime to procure an abortion, or to attempt one, except when done by medical advice for the purpose of saving the life of the mother. ‘Procuring’ an abortion is used here as meaning ‘to cause’ or ‘bring about’ an abortion. So the law criminalizes performing an abortion, not having an abortion. It’s the doctor, not the woman having the abortion, who breaks the law
(45) In Section VII of Roe v Wade, Justice Blackmun discusses “three reasons that have been advanced to explain the enactment of criminal abortion laws in the 19th century and to justify their continued existence.” What are those three reasons?
(1) Product of Victorian social concern to discourage illicit sexual conduct. This argument does not get current uptake

(2) Concern with abortion as a medical procedure. When abortion laws were first enacted in the mid-19th c, the procedure was hazardous, so the mortality for women was very high. But the procedures used now are much safer, especially since antibiotics were developed in the 1940s. Mortality rates for women having abortions is now lower those for childbirth
(3) The State’s interest in protecting prenatal life. People disagree about when to think of the fetus as an independent person. But no matter when that happens, it is appropriate to say at least that the State has an interest in the potential life of the fetus.




(46) Why does Justice Blackmun believe the right of privacy is “broad enough to encompass a woman’s decision whether or not to terminate her pregnancy”? (60)
The detriment the State would impose upon the pregnant woman by denying this choice altogether is apparent: direct medical harm may be involved; maternity may force upon the woman a distressful life and future; mental and physical health may be taxed by child care. In other words, the decision to carry a pregnancy to term is a personal decision that is so important for one’s life that it should be considered “fundamental.” So it falls within the domain carved out by the constitutional “right of privacy.”
(47) Under what circumstances have U.S. Supreme Court decisions allowed restrictions on fundamental rights? (61)
In other situations involving fundamental rights, the Court has held that regulation limiting those rights is justified only by a compelling state interest.
(48) At what point does the “State’s important and legitimate interest in potential life” become “compelling,” and what sort of regulation does that permit? (67)
In light of present medical knowledge, the State’s interest in the health of the mother becomes compelling at approximately the end of the first trimester. From the end of the first trimester forward, a State may regulate the abortion procedure to the extent that reasonably relates to the preservation and protection of maternal health. For instance, it may regulate who may perform an abortion, and stipulate facility standards.

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