Benedict Rogers is a human rights activist, a former Parliamentary Candidate, and is Deputy Chairman of the Conservative Party Human Rights Commission.
Two events took place yesterday which have the potential to contribute to making our world a better place. One was President Barack Obama’s inauguration – or more specifically, his speech. The other was a debate in the House of Lords on the security, humanitarian and human rights situation in North Korea. Both had a ‘carpe diem’ feel to them.
Obama’s speech had the soaring, inspiring rhetoric which we have come to associate with him. But, beneath the rhetoric, it contained some truths that all of us, wherever we are in the world, should internalise and turn into action. He talked about the founding truths of the United States of America, which are universal to all mankind – of all men being made equal, with unalienable rights, including life and liberty. But he added a challenge to us:
"For history tells us that while these truths may be self-evident, they have never been self-executing; that while freedom is a gift from God, it must be secured by His people here on Earth".
In other words, we must work for it.