"The Human Rights Act For Ever Changes The Nature Of British Society, Marking A Major Turning Point In British Constitutional History." Discuss

2358 words - 9 pages

Public Law Essay.October 2001 saw the full implementation of The Human Rights Act 1998. Its effect was to incorporate the European Convention of Human rights into domestic law. This means that British Citizens can now rely upon Convention Rights in British courts and will not have to 'take the long slow road to the Court in Strasbourg'. A civilised society can only exist when the citizens of the State know their rights, respect their rights and fulfil their own obligations to society. It therefore, follows that knowledge of Human Rights and dignity is the very basics of a civilised and democratic state. To some the Act marks 'a fundamental constitutional change…' which represents a strong step forward in Britain establishing a quasi-Bill of Rights 'introducing new values and an altered frame of reference to UK public Law'. To others however, the Act is simply a 'British statute having in principle no different status from that of any other statute' and whose effects, can not be considered so 'far-reaching.' This essay will seek to identify the effects that the Act will have on both our constitution and our lives as British citizens.Ostensibly, the Human Rights Act 1998 purports to confer upon British citizens 'rights'. It would seem appropriate therefore, if first, we explore exactly what is meant by the word 'rights' and determine whether in fact such a conferral changes anything at all.Great Britain, almost uniquely amongst democratic Western states, has no comprehensive Bill of Rights. Instead 'rights' are to be adduced as the sum total of, liberty - less State imposed restriction. In other words 'every citizen has a right to do what he likes, unless restrained by the common law or statute.' Rights existing in such a way are commonly referred to as 'liberties'. Appraisal of these liberties proves somewhat illusive under a common law jurisdiction, in the sense that to do so, one must first trawl through almost every piece of legislation and case law to date. This is an unacceptable proposition considering that 'rights are standardly justified on the grounds that they reinforce citizenship.' Correlatively, to keep citizens in the dark about their rights is to keep them in the dark about their citizenship. Furthermore, if '[t]he protection of individual rights and freedoms by the State is an essential feature of the rule of law,' surely, of even greater importance, is prior knowledge of those 'rights'?While to some, the incorporeal existence of liberties is advantageous (largely due to the flexibility it offers), to others it is deemed wholly inconsistent with the premise of responsible and accountable democracy. Sir John Laws for example comments that the result of Parliamentary Sovereignty, combined with this 'negative rights' approach, is that the citizen is afforded no protection against 'lawless and violent abuses of power by an overwhelming State'. Nor are they protected against the more subtle, incremental erosion of rights as...

Find Another Essay On "The Human Rights act for ever changes the nature of British society, marking a major turning point in British Constitutional history." Discuss

Changes in the 19th Century British Press J de Salles

2185 words - 9 pages Changes in the 19th Century British PressDuring the nineteenth century the press changed because of changing attitudes in society, advances in technology and changes in law. The press changed gradually over this course with certain people playing an important role in this progression.The first thing to consider is the feelings towards the press from the turn of the eighteenth century into the nineteenth century. It was a time of popular

Discuss the Minority Presence in Contemporary British Art

3146 words - 13 pages British art culture, is exhibited at a major museums and was even awarded the Turner prize in 1998, with a considerable amount of prize money. Yet looking closely at his work shows how intrinsically tied he is to white establishment. In Afrodizzia (1996) at the Saatchi Gallery, a complex range of images of 'blackness' appears. Ofili's colors, for which he receives critical praise, are exaggerated in a psychedelic way. The use of glitter gives the

Account for Changes in British Policy Towards Ireland Between 1914 and 1922. Why Did These Changes Fail to Satisfy the People of Ireland?

2218 words - 9 pages Ireland. The problem for the British Prime Minister, Asquith, as well as the leading Catholic and Protestant figures Redmond and Carson, was how to separate Ireland into Ulster and Ireland. This problem dissatisfied Ireland a great deal, neither side wanted to end up living under the 'wrong' government. Out of the nine counties in question the Catholic/Protestant majority was clear in all but two, Fermanagh and Tyrone, as there were as many

Recent Changes in British Society and Greater Diversity of Family Types

2072 words - 8 pages families, same sex families, unmarried parents who co habit and most popularly families who have step relations. I intend to research and discuss these different types of family, and the factors and changes in British society, which have influenced them, to provide a well-researched and informative essay. Willmott and Young have studied family life in London for over twenty years. They believe that the family has changed

How far could the 3rd Reform Act be justifiably called a turning point?

592 words - 2 pages property owners within the existing system being protected.To a certain extent the 3rd Reform Act was a turning point because not only did it increase the electorate from about 3 to 6 million but also for the first time ever, but also the landed interest was no longer the powerful political class they had previously been. The 1884 Act has been described as 'the most substantial package of parliamentary reform in the 19th century'. because for the

Analysis of "Romeo and Juliet", Act 3 Scene 1, 'The Turning Point'.

1695 words - 7 pages The story of "Romeo and Juliet" is a tragedy. This is well known among most people, but why is this play a tragedy? When did it all start? Where is the turning point in this play? I think that the turning point is Act 3 Scene 1. This is the point where the tragedy starts. This scene focuses much on Romeo. When Romeo kills Tybalt in this scene, the Capulets don't just hate the Montagues, they hate them a lot. This essay will describe what

Describe how analogue to digital will affect the system from a technological point of view, and discuss more widely how society might be affected by these changes.

829 words - 3 pages It has been claimed that 'television has altered our world. In the same way people often speak of a new world, a new society, a new phrase of history, being created- 'brought about'- by this new technology' . Television wowed society when it was originally created as for the first time we were able to enjoy visual entertainment in the confinements of our own homes. At that time television only displayed two channels and transmitted simply to

Battle of bunker's hill from the british point of view (fictional journal)

1838 words - 7 pages sent. She then left saying that it was my fault that Sam was off at war.I think that she hates me now.Other than that, life around here is ok. It is just about five times as much work for me than before, because now I have to do all of the chores in the house by myself. I am now learning how to cut lumber, and start a fire with it.There is a good side to this though. Now that Sam is gone, the house is quiet. I only have to make enough money to buy

"Novelists invariably write to convey their view on human nature and society." Use this quotation as a starting point to write about the thematic concerns of the novel.

919 words - 4 pages In "Emma", Jane Austen has conveyed her views about the confined nature of women's existence, the evils of trickery and a lack of directness, and the damaging consequences of unrestrained use of the imagination.Austen's view on the confined nature of women's existence is expressed through Emma, Jane, miss Bate. Emma, the protagonist of the novel, gives an impression of a bored girl, constantly seeking for excitement by preoccupying in other's

Nature in 16th Century British Literature

2374 words - 9 pages Nature is a fundamental aspect of people's lives. It encapsulates our everyday lives because it is everywhere we go and who we are; it's the air we breathe, the ground under our feet, the way we act, and the way we think. Nature has always been and always will be a major influence in the life of every human being no matter what the time period. The theme of nature in sixteenth century English literature functions as a means of expression

The Influence of British Social Changes on the Origin and Development of English

1383 words - 6 pages Abstract: Social changes are one of the main factors of the origin and development of a language. This author mainlyanalyzes the influence of British social changes on the origin and development of English from three periods in the histo-ry of English language.Keywords: origin of English; development of English; social changes1 IntroductionThere are about four thousand languages in the world.English is the most popular language among them. In

Similar Essays

Act 2 Scene 2 As A Turning Point In The Play For Macbeth And Lady Macbeth

1924 words - 8 pages Act 2 Scene 2 as a Turning Point in the Play for Macbeth and Lady Macbeth On the way home from a courageous battle the play begins with Macbeth and Banquo's noble and victorious return. During their journey they are greeted by 3 witches whom prophesize Macbeth's rise to power as King. Macbeth is very curious about these strange beings and their message and starts to wonder if it really is quite possible to find

The Incorporation Of The Human Right Act Into British Law

2404 words - 10 pages secretary Jack Straw said “these are the new rights for the new millennium. The Human Rights Act is the most important peace of constitutional legislation the UK has ever seen”. A citizen is a member of state who expects the state to protect them but also has duties towards it. Being a good citizen means contributing to society and follows the law. Jack Straw described this as “Rights flow from duties-not the other way around

Was It Ever Possible For The British To Establish A Fair Solution To The Palestinian Problem?

2440 words - 10 pages interests in paradoxical apposition to honour and honesty, blinkered faith at the expense of realism, and above all the inherent instinctive nature of man to procreate, the struggle for survival and desire for immortality through one's progeny, the need to leave a mark on the world - a legacy for posterity. The greatest philosophers of the world have mused about the concept of free will; the extent to which we have control of our destinies and the extent

"Romeo And Juliet" Explore Shakespeare's Presentation Of Act 3 Scene 1 As A Turning Point In The Play.

952 words - 4 pages intention. This may be for commercial purposes.Romeo's character changes after Mercutio's death, in Act 1 scene 5. Romeo is in love, he uses poetic language to describe Juliet and how he feels about her, "It seems she hangs upon the cheek of night. Like a rich jewel in an Ethiop's ear." The use of metaphor and simile here show how passionate his new love is. This happiness includes Tybalt when he speaks to him in Act 3 scene 1, 'But love thee better