Naturally everyone born in this world has to pass through a number of stages such as infancy, childhood, youth, middle age and old age provided of course one remains alive without facing death prematurely. During infancy and feeble old age one has to depend on others for survival. Life cycle is such that in the human world and the world of animals the babies depend on their parents for their survival. Old and feeble grandfathers and grandmothers depend on their sons and daughters as well as on grand children. If they are not kind enough to do their part for the sake of the feeble lot one has to seek the assistance of social institutions such as homes for elders.
According to Buddhism birth is suffering, decay is suffering and death is suffering. One has to suffer from ill health. These sufferings are comparatively less during the periods after infancy and before old age. However during childhood, the young age and middle age there are numerous responsibilities to be accomplished. Childhood and the early young age are the periods of life when one prepares to undertake the responsibilities in the worldly life. Children of today are responsible citizens of tomorrow. Hence, childhood is the prime age in one’s life.
Children who prepare to be future citizens
Childhood is the period of learning, since children are the future citizens of the world the fate of the future world depends on what they learn today. The member countries of the United Nations have affirmed their faith in the fundamental human rights and dignity and worth of the person and have determined to promote social progress and better standards of living in larger freedom.
The United Nations has, in the Universal Declaration of Human Rights proclaimed that everyone in this world is entitled to all the rights and freedoms set forth therein, without distinction of any kind such as the age, race, colour, sex, language, religion or other opinion, national or social origin, property, birth or other status.
What a child needs most
Up to the age of about ten years parents are their heroes and the children love them more than any others. They admire them, believe them, respect them, learn from them, and imitate them. Next to the parents the teachers come to the scene who too are regarded as heroes by the children.
However, children have their own ambitions, strategies and talents. Parents should be concerned more about the talents and ambitions of the children rather than forcing the children to do things according to their whims and fancies. Since children are the future citizens of the world the fate of the future world depends on what they learn today. Hence, it is best if they are allowed to prepare for the future in their own way under the guidance of parents and teachers and to be happy and contended citizens in time to come.
The child by reason of his or her physical and mental immaturity needs special safeguards and care including appropriate legal protection before and after birth. The United Nations General assembly proclaims the Declaration of the Rights of Child to the end that he or she may have a happy childhood and enjoy for his or her own good and for the good of the society the rights and freedoms. It calls upon parents, men and women, voluntary organizations, local authorities and national governments to recognize these rights and strive for their observance by legislative and other measures progressively taken in accordance with the Declaration.
Child entitled to rights without distinction or discrimination
Every child is entitled to these rights without discrimination or distinction on account of race, colour, sex, language, religion, political or other opinion, national or social origin, property, birth or other status whether of himself or herself or his or her family.
The child shall enjoy special protection and shall be given opportunities and facilities to enable him/her to develop physically, mentally, morally, spiritually and socially in a healthy and normal manner and in conditions of freedom and dignity.
The child shall be entitled from his/her birth for a name and nationality and shall enjoy the benefits of social security. He/she shall be entitled to grow and develop in health. The child shall be provided special care and protection to him/her as well as to his/her mother including adequate per-natal care. The child shall have the right to adequate nutrition, housing, recreation and medical services.
Care for children physically and mentally handicapped
There are children who are handicapped physically. There are deaf and blind children and those deformed physically without having limbs or without the ability to move about. Further, there are mentally handicapped children. Such children should gain admission to special institutions such as the schools for the deaf and blind and their inherent rights for care, love and education etc. should not be denied to them.
Children from under privileged families
Further there are socially handicapped children such as those to poor families or underprivileged families. There are certain other children who are socially marginalized for various reasons beyond their control and not due any fault on their part but merely due to the reason that they are born to families not cared by the civilized society, for example children are born to families belonging to the below average income group. Such children should not be denied of their legitimate right for nutrition, care, love and education.
Add commentComments will be edited (grammar, spelling and slang) and authorized at the discretion of Daily Mirror online. The website also has the right not to publish selected comments.