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Thread: Being a citizen - a privilege or just a human right?

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Oct 2017
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    Nottingham, UK
    Posts
    2,136

    Default Being a citizen - a privilege or just a human right?

    I believe that the Member's Lounge is the DYR forum's answer to Speaker's Corner, and so I just thought that I would write about something here that I feel passionate about, as a person with human rights.

    I have always thought that most adults take for granted the things that they are legally able to do such as get married, have consensual sex, purchase alcohol and tobacco from a pub or off-licence, vote in an election, change their name by deed poll, and all the other things that one can legally do as soon as one becomes 18 (or perhaps a year or two younger considering the "privilege"), as if they could do most of them from the day they were born. Is it a reward for reaching our 18th birthday, or is it just the norm as we have just reached that age. I am a non-smoker and mostly teetotal (save for Christmas and New Year) and so therefore I don't need to bother about ID when I purchase drinks. Even as I am at the start of my third full decade of adulthood, I still feel that I need an instruction manual to get my way around life.

    I am such a strong supporter in Citizenship and Personal, Social and Health Education (PSHE), and I believe that they are subjects which represents keys that un-opens so may locks when we become adults - a vital subject just like English, Mathematics and Science, and perhaps something one can thank the Education Reform Act 1988 for. I believe that it even starts as early as Infant School when we are told about looking after ourselves and making sure that we can tell apart those we know from total strangers. I just wish that I had more than one lesson of PSHE on the Year 10 and 11 school timetable instead of just one weekly stint on Monday mornings just before lunchtime - in the long run I would have benefited from it. Standing up and being counted is a vital thing in the society that we live in. We deserve to have control over our own lives as adults. Don't be afraid to personally express yourself - it does take guts, just like it has just to write about it on here.

    I am not an elitist person, but I am glad that I have the right to vote in elections and referendums - there is something thrilling about a Poll Card being delivered in my daily post as that is my invitation to choose who I want to be my Member of Parliament or councillor or representative, or whether to decide on Yes or No to a vital question, and to travel to the local Polling Station to put an X in the box. I didn't choose for Brexit to happen, but the majority of the voters did back in June 2016. My first election that I voted in was the 1997 General Election. I used to hate being told what to do, and people saying that I used to get my own way all the time - 18 is indeed a round number.

    I have now been an adult now for over 22 years - more than half my life, including 25 years this year since I was allowed to lose my own virginity. Admittedly, due to my own difficulties that I have had, I have not experienced some things that most adults take for granted such as get married or have a family of my own, but I often think that how much is society on my side when it comes to getting a chance to do just that. We are all independent from each other - getting my own flat in 2014 was one branch of that independence which I achieved, and that felt good because it was in a suburb which I had always wanted to live in since I was a child. Walking into Tesco and just purchasing a loaf of bread and a bottle of milk feels good. Having a TV licence so that I can legally watch television in my own home - I am not grumbling.


    I would love to get married one day and have a family of my own, but circumstances have dictated against me. It makes one think whether the law and society allows other people to achieve their goals and dreams in life, but it hasn't happened for myself just yet. My Asperger Syndrome and social phobias always gets in the way - I have always been jealous of those who are married and perhaps even feel resentment as well - love is a strong thing that I just want to be part of - I tried to get equality, and I failed miserably. I suppose that the launch of civil partnerships and same sex marriage eases the burden slightly hence equality (even though I am a man who is looking for a woman), but it is a truism that some are more equal than others. I keep thinking to myself that it is perfectly legal to do what others do. To a virgin who is an adult, the age of 16 is no different to the age of 60 - it might as well be illegal if one has a social phobia which prevents him from doing what he wants to do in life.

    I am also a strong supporter in the Data Protection Act 1998 and Freedom of Information Act 2000 - the former had allowed me to know what doctors and specialists have mentioned about why I was so different as a child, and that can sometimes save lives - that is what I call truth and transparency. I grew up being told what was right and what was wrong, so why should have thrown all that away on my 18th birthday back in August 1996?

    We live in a democratic society and we should respect it - if we abuse it, (or even abuse our fellow citizens), then one should expect to be dealt within the legal platforms that we have in this country. We should expect to be punished if we do wrong and is against the law, but on the other hand, we should be forgiven to a certain degree if we probably didn't know that our actions were originally wrong. Personally, I have got nothing to hide - I would prefer society to be as transparent and straightforward as possible, so that hopefully fewer people commit crime, and few people are victims of crime. I am not bothered about carrying an ID card if it helps to eliminate me from accusation and bureaucracy - I feel as if I have got nothing to lose by doing that. I may be just an average Member of the Public who walks down the street almost every day, but I do feel passionate about the limited rights that I have as a citizen. Indeed, I think of celebrities for example as being a lot more elitist than ordinary Members of the Public for obvious reasons.

    What do you think about being a citizen? - is it something that you take for granted or is it something which feels like a bonus in life? Would you miss the chance to do things if it was taken away from you?
     
    I am now in my 40s (just in case anyone asks).

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Mar 2007
    Location
    Brisbane
    Posts
    846

    Default Re: Being a citizen - a privilege or just a human right?

    Being a recognised citizen of two countries I take neither for granted. Both allow me free travel in the country of residence, which is something I know many people would give up everything for.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Jul 2017
    Location
    London
    Posts
    169

    Default Re: Being a citizen - a privilege or just a human right?

    You stated, "just wish that I had more than one lesson of PSHE on the Year 10 and 11 school timetable instead of just one weekly stint on Monday mornings just before lunchtime - in the long run I would have benefited from it. Standing up and being counted is a vital thing in the society that we live in."

    You were lucky to get that much. I don't think there is sufficient space in the school timetable to accommodate another lesson.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Jun 2010
    Location
    co armagh n/ireland
    Posts
    13,476

    Default Re: Being a citizen - a privilege or just a human right?

    WELL WHERE I LIVE IM ENTITLED TO BOTH A BRITISH AND IRISH PASSPORT WHICH IS SOMETHING NOT MANY CAN HAVE

    I TRY NOT TO TAKE CERTAIN THINGS FOR GRANTED LIKE VOTING ETC BEEN ABLE TO COME AND GO AS I WANT.

    IM GLAD THE Data Protection Act 1998 and Freedom of Information Act 2000 THE FORMER ONE HAS HELPED U UNDERSTAND WHY YOU WHERE DIFFERENT BUT NO LESS A MEMBER OF SOCIETY THAN ANYONE ELSE.

    YOU GEORGE GETTING YOUR OWN FLAT IN 2014 FOR YOU WAS A HUGE THING AS YOUR ASBERGERS MUST HAVE MADE A BIGGER CHALLENGE SO WELL DONE.

    BRITAIN MAY NOT BE PERFECT BUT COMPARED TO SO SOME COUNTRIES WE ARE WELL OFF IN TERMS OF RIGHTS ETC BEING ABLE TO GO PLACES AND KNOWING YOU WILL BE QUITE SAFE.

    I SUPPOSE BEING A CITIZEN IS BOTH A PRIVILEGE AND A HUMAN RIGHT.

    I HAVE NO PROBLEM CARRYING ID FOR EXAMPLE IN TOKYO YOUR EXPECTED TO HAVE ID ON YOU ALL THE TIME.


    Quote Originally Posted by George 1978 View Post
    I believe that the Member's Lounge is the DYR forum's answer to Speaker's Corner, and so I just thought that I would write about something here that I feel passionate about, as a person with human rights.

    I have always thought that most adults take for granted the things that they are legally able to do such as get married, have consensual sex, purchase alcohol and tobacco from a pub or off-licence, vote in an election, change their name by deed poll, and all the other things that one can legally do as soon as one becomes 18 (or perhaps a year or two younger considering the "privilege"), as if they could do most of them from the day they were born. Is it a reward for reaching our 18th birthday, or is it just the norm as we have just reached that age. I am a non-smoker and mostly teetotal (save for Christmas and New Year) and so therefore I don't need to bother about ID when I purchase drinks. Even as I am at the start of my third full decade of adulthood, I still feel that I need an instruction manual to get my way around life.

    I am such a strong supporter in Citizenship and Personal, Social and Health Education (PSHE), and I believe that they are subjects which represents keys that un-opens so may locks when we become adults - a vital subject just like English, Mathematics and Science, and perhaps something one can thank the Education Reform Act 1988 for. I believe that it even starts as early as Infant School when we are told about looking after ourselves and making sure that we can tell apart those we know from total strangers. I just wish that I had more than one lesson of PSHE on the Year 10 and 11 school timetable instead of just one weekly stint on Monday mornings just before lunchtime - in the long run I would have benefited from it. Standing up and being counted is a vital thing in the society that we live in. We deserve to have control over our own lives as adults. Don't be afraid to personally express yourself - it does take guts, just like it has just to write about it on here.

    I am not an elitist person, but I am glad that I have the right to vote in elections and referendums - there is something thrilling about a Poll Card being delivered in my daily post as that is my invitation to choose who I want to be my Member of Parliament or councillor or representative, or whether to decide on Yes or No to a vital question, and to travel to the local Polling Station to put an X in the box. I didn't choose for Brexit to happen, but the majority of the voters did back in June 2016. My first election that I voted in was the 1997 General Election. I used to hate being told what to do, and people saying that I used to get my own way all the time - 18 is indeed a round number.

    I have now been an adult now for over 22 years - more than half my life, including 25 years this year since I was allowed to lose my own virginity. Admittedly, due to my own difficulties that I have had, I have not experienced some things that most adults take for granted such as get married or have a family of my own, but I often think that how much is society on my side when it comes to getting a chance to do just that. We are all independent from each other - getting my own flat in 2014 was one branch of that independence which I achieved, and that felt good because it was in a suburb which I had always wanted to live in since I was a child. Walking into Tesco and just purchasing a loaf of bread and a bottle of milk feels good. Having a TV licence so that I can legally watch television in my own home - I am not grumbling.


    I would love to get married one day and have a family of my own, but circumstances have dictated against me. It makes one think whether the law and society allows other people to achieve their goals and dreams in life, but it hasn't happened for myself just yet. My Asperger Syndrome and social phobias always gets in the way - I have always been jealous of those who are married and perhaps even feel resentment as well - love is a strong thing that I just want to be part of - I tried to get equality, and I failed miserably. I suppose that the launch of civil partnerships and same sex marriage eases the burden slightly hence equality (even though I am a man who is looking for a woman), but it is a truism that some are more equal than others. I keep thinking to myself that it is perfectly legal to do what others do. To a virgin who is an adult, the age of 16 is no different to the age of 60 - it might as well be illegal if one has a social phobia which prevents him from doing what he wants to do in life.

    I am also a strong supporter in the Data Protection Act 1998 and Freedom of Information Act 2000 - the former had allowed me to know what doctors and specialists have mentioned about why I was so different as a child, and that can sometimes save lives - that is what I call truth and transparency. I grew up being told what was right and what was wrong, so why should have thrown all that away on my 18th birthday back in August 1996?

    We live in a democratic society and we should respect it - if we abuse it, (or even abuse our fellow citizens), then one should expect to be dealt within the legal platforms that we have in this country. We should expect to be punished if we do wrong and is against the law, but on the other hand, we should be forgiven to a certain degree if we probably didn't know that our actions were originally wrong. Personally, I have got nothing to hide - I would prefer society to be as transparent and straightforward as possible, so that hopefully fewer people commit crime, and few people are victims of crime. I am not bothered about carrying an ID card if it helps to eliminate me from accusation and bureaucracy - I feel as if I have got nothing to lose by doing that. I may be just an average Member of the Public who walks down the street almost every day, but I do feel passionate about the limited rights that I have as a citizen. Indeed, I think of celebrities for example as being a lot more elitist than ordinary Members of the Public for obvious reasons.

    What do you think about being a citizen? - is it something that you take for granted or is it something which feels like a bonus in life? Would you miss the chance to do things if it was taken away from you?
     
    FOR THE HONOUR OF GRAYSKULL

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