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Traditions like Advent, Christmas and Epiphany are expressions of a continuum with past and future generations, a spiritual communion with transcendental values of family, home, heritage, identity, Heimat — reflected in symbols and sounds — nativity scenes, carol singing, midnight Mass. Reenacting these rites has added value – touching base with ourselves, exercising that most fundamental human right to our identity. This holiday season can and must be more than just good meals, consumerism and materialism. Let’s make it sacred and truly ours as a celebration of our human nature and our sense of belonging, Geborgenheit. It may be permitted to propose a shift in thinking models to discard the artificial division of human rights into categories of first, second and third generation rights — with their skewed value judgements. Rights should henceforth be redefined in functional terms, recognizing human dignity as the source of all rights, whether individual or collective. This functional paradigm reveals the inter-relatedness of all rights as the convergence of enabling rights (such as the rights to peace, food, health, homeland and environment), inherent/immanent rights (such as equality and non-discrimination), procedural rights (such as access to information, freedom of expression and due process) and what could be called outcome rights, that is, the practical realization of human dignity in the form of the right to identity and its corollaries, the rights to privacy, home and family, to our personality, to achieve our potential and to be just who we are, free to live our transcendence, practice our faith, enjoy our own culture, preferences and opinions, without intimidation, surveillance or pressures to behave in a prescribed “politically correct” mode or endure self-censorship. The absence of this outcome right to identity and self-respect is reflected in much of the strife we see in the world today. Pax vobiscum! (see A/68/284, para 68)

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