The Labor Movement and Adventist’s Respond
The labor movement is one of the main components of civil society in most industrialized countries. Adventist perceptions of the labor movement have changed over time. At first, Adventist saw the labor movement as connected with European
immigrants to the United States, “which included many Catholics who brought their ideas with them and furnished much of the vitality of the labor movement on the west
side of the Atlantic.” 156 Thus, the labor movement was identified with Catholic
inmigrants. Generally, most Protestant groups viewed “the United States as the world’s model of laissez-faire philosophy that embodied freedom of conscience and religious activity. However, some feared that violent strikes would incite intervention by the state which could produce a military state that would remove individual rights. To
The words of the prophet Isaiah encourage believers to seek justice and resist evil or injustice: “Learn to do good; seek justice, reprove the ruthless, defend the orphan, plead for the widow” (Isa 1:17).
Any constitution, Aristotle argued, “should be adjusted to the nature and the needs of the members of the particular group. Therefore, a good constitution must
recognize these natural inequalities and confer rights accordingly.”174 It follows that aspects economic imbalance, power imbalance, and resource imbalance should be considered. Such inequalities would be a special focus of the state’s constitution.
In the case of Myanmar, where there has been no constitution since 1988, rule is by decree and order. The military government threatens its own people as if they were enemies and slaves. So it can never solve inequalities in the country.175
Although Myanmar’s military junta drafted a new constitution in 2008, it was design to serve it’s own interest. The Military government has failed protect the basic human right of religious freedom, along with other rights of ethnic minorities. Thus there is evident a lack of balances in meeting the people’s needs; power and economic prosperities are not distributed fairly.
As an example, in the newly drafted constitution, he superiority of the Buddhist religion is stated. This kind of religious imbalance and restriction to other religions made it difficult for Christians to enjoy worship services in their own languages and cultural contexts.
Compared to Myanmar’s national law, international law would be appear to better able to find a solution to the current crisis. Article 27 of the International
Covenant on Civil and Political Rights (ICCPR) states, “in those States in which ethnic, religious or linguistic minorities exist persons belonging to such minorities shall not be denied the right, in community with the other members of their group, to enjoy their own culture, to profess and practice their own religion, or to use their own