Sample Political Science Paper on Civil and Human Rights

Civil and Human Rights

Human and civil rights are essentials aspects of a nation’s political system and individual rights. These rights are formulated in every country’s justice system to guide institutions and the public. Historical and contemporary events promoting civil and human rights have played a significant role in shaping political systems and understanding the critical aspects of these rights. The purpose of this paper is to analyze the readings provided in regard to the course materials while discussing the relevant issues, the role of politics, justice, and law, and the implications of human and civil rights. The first section will analyze protesters’ right to protection, followed by individual’s right to engaging in non-violent civil disobedience. The third part will discuss the role of the Human Rights Framework in the fight for racial justice. The fourth paragraph will highlight the administrative measures against terrorism. The final paragraph will investigate the importance of a security framework in ensuring the suppression of social movements. The paper will focus mainly on enlightening and challenging my understanding of protections, security, rights, and liberties.

Human Rights Protections of Protests

The documented national protest reports and legislation following the public demonstrations enhance the understanding of human rights concerning both lawful and unlawful protests. People who engage in peaceful demonstrations should receive complete protection even when there are acts of violence within the crowd. The right to freedom protects even unlawful protesters (“Take back the streets” Repression and criminalization of protest around the world, 2013). However, as illustrated by the various national cases, using lethal force during demonstrations is a crucial concern across the globe. Many governments often classify protests as non-peaceful even when individuals remain non-violent. They use the general classification to justify repressive state measures, such as the use of lethal force. It revokes individuals’ rights to peaceful assembly, demanding their protection despite acts of violence during protests. Furthermore, although the right to peaceful assembly is limited to non-violent gatherings, other human rights protections remain applicable to all kinds of protests, whether classified as violent or non-violent. Regulatory suppression and criminalization of protests are also fostered through policies used to threaten participation in the protest. The reading further explains that although the term ‘protest’ may not be outlined in any international treaty, regional and universal human rights agreements protect the liberty to protest by acknowledging rights to freedom of speech and expression, assembly, and freedom of association.

The Right to Civil Disobedience

The various historical incidences in Canada and the United States enhance understanding of civil disobedience and significant civil rights concerns. Civil disobedience is a deliberate and conscientiously motivated public, non-violent action that obeys the legality of structured political and legal systems while addressing and sharing their perceived concerns. Thus, the civil disobedient must be ready and willing to embrace any relevant penalties issued for their disobedience. Mahatma Gandhi’s campaign against racial discrimination was considered a civil disobedience act, intended to achieve political ends by exposing, renouncing violence, and resisting injustices both psychologically and physically (Fleming, 2020). He exercised civil disobedience whenever the state engaged in corrupt practices or demonstrated lawlessness. It was a way of ensuring respect for the policy even when opposing it and readiness to accept any resulting punishment. The Bill of Rights and the Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedom grant the right to assemble, speak, and associate even under circumstances that involve breaching specific laws through civil disobedience (Fleming, 2020). The two documents played a significant role in shaping Canada’s acceptance of peaceful civil disobedience as a legitimate expression of disagreement. Individuals may practice civil disobedience in masses or small groups whose intentions vary significantly. For some, it is a way of expressing their held convictions while respecting the status quo. Other people strive to change laws or policies they consider unjust by undermining or disintegrating a government considered oppressive and unfair and replace it with a better system (Clément, 2008).

The Association Between Human Rights Framework and Racial Justice

The battle for racial justice, particularly in the United States, is informative and enlightens one’s understanding of the relevance of human and civil rights in addressing racial discrimination and injustices. The reading applies both historical and contemporary cases and research to highlight how the Human Rights Framework enables the fight for racial inequities in America. It allows the making of several sets of claims regarding racial injustices that occur in various domains, including coordinated state violence and structural arrangements. The HRF enables organizations and activists to participate in accountability politics by demanding the state’s obligation to uphold human rights codes and norms. It also allows using symbolic politics to articulate and frame issues and events like ethnic police violence as violations of human rights (Rosino, 2017). By documenting racial disparity as human rights violations, agencies participate in symbolic politics and act as information sources to influence political pressure, public discourse, and policy formation. Activists and organization’s ability to use these political forms to leverage influence over institutions and the state depends heavily on both discursive and extant political opportunities and organizational leaders to seize such opportunities strategically. By analyzing the HRF, the reading informs one of the critical roles the HRF plays in fighting racial injustices. It proceeds to explain a significant aspect that non-governmental organizations and social movements that use the HRF to engage in mobilization tactics and make claims easily engage in an international discursive in normative, institutional and legal meanings. Local organizations addressing racial justice operate in transnational advocacy and network positions. Using political opportunities is essential for community organizations managed by individuals from affected populations that fight for human rights (Rosino, 2017). The state’s resiliency to submit to domestic and geopolitical pressure limits the HRF in its ability to allow activists to work with institutions.

The Role of Human Rights in Anti-terrorism

Security strategies in Britain and Canada against terrorism enlighten an individual’s understanding of critical aspects of government security and its role in ensuring national security. The elaboration of proportionality analysis is informative as it provides more knowledge to understanding terrorism and security measures. Proportionality analysis investigates whether a rational association exists between the goal of eliminating terrorism and the proposed action. It is a more demanding and disciplined procedure than the open-ended balancing of security and rights since it addresses whether a violation of rights will increase safety and if less drastic measures can prevent terrorism. Proportionality analysis requires both governments and judges to consider rights-invasive policies’ effectiveness in eliminating terrorism. The reading argues that excellent counter-terrorism approaches involve more secular administrative regulation to prevent criminals from accessing sites and substances that can be used for terrorism (Roach, 2017). An intelligent national security policy recognizes that it is impossible to avoid all forms of terrorism. Thus, considerable resources and efforts should focus on harm reduction and emergency preparedness measures. Some anti-terrorism policies violate rights and are ineffective in ensuring security. Security strategies that target individuals based on race, color, or religion are biased. The Public Safety Act provides controls on toxins and explosives that terrorists can use to cause harm. It contains administrative measures that regulate the environment before and after terrorism. The Act allows Ministers to issue directions concerning environmental, health, aeronautics, protection, drugs and food, shipping, radiation-emitting devices, quarantines, and hazardous products (Roach, 2017). The Security Resolution 1624, sponsored by the British government, demands all states take appropriate steps to prevent incitement to commit terrorism.

The Role of Security Intelligence in Social Movement Suppression

Reports from the Canadian national police intelligence, the National Intelligence Service, the Royal Canadian Mounted Police, and Canadian Security Intelligence Service identify the existing gap in understanding the association between security intelligence and social movement suppression. These reports elaborate on intelligence clusters’ formation in Canada. Security, policing, and intelligence agencies are networked through surveillance to extend suppression projects capacities that aim to harass, demobilize and intimidate social movement groups. Canadian intelligence clusters offer an illustration of mission creep, in which these intelligence clusters’ functions extend beyond their initial mandates, demonstrated in the changing targets of Al-Qaeda and financial terrorism to domestic politics. Moreover, the intelligence clusters construct knowledge, creating terror identities that promote further intelligence work, security projects, and large-scale surveillance that accompany debatable mega-events (Monaghan & Walby, 2012). The surveillance projects create the development and circulation of security knowledge. Surveillance generates crucial information, leading to a transformation of how suppression targets are categorized in intelligence reports. Surveillance as a classification tool aims to regulate, detect, and eliminate corrupting factors that threaten the population’s security through explicitly focusing on its consequences and politics.


Analyzing the provided readings has improved my understanding of the rights to protection of protesters, the role of civil disobedience in changing the law and ensuring fairness. It has also enlightened my perception of the Human Rights Framework’s contribution to racial justice and the government’s role in preventing terrorism and ensuring security. The inquiry into the history, politics of rights, and theoretical engagement have revealed further social dimensions insights. However, significant improvements need to be made. The government should establish and promote international and domestic regulatory frameworks to control lethal weapons in dispersing protests. It should monitor the operation of policies and laws to ensure that they are not implemented in an unnecessary or biased restrictive manner. Future research should seek to uncover society’s structural and ideological implications for the severity of human and civil rights violations and improve everyday human rights practice.




Clément, D. (2008). The October crisis of 1970: Human rights abuses under the War Measures Act. Journal of Canadian Studies, 42(2), 160–186.

Fleming, K. (2020). “Socially disruptive ACTIONS … have become as Canadian as Maple SYRUP”: Civil disobedience in Canada, 1960–2012. Journal of Canadian Studies, 54(1), 181–212.

Monaghan, J., & Walby, K. (2012). Making up ‘terror Identities’: SECURITY INTELLIGENCE, Canada’s INTEGRATED threat assessment centre and social movement suppression. Policing and Society, 22(2), 133–151.

Roach, K. (2017). Must we trade rights for security? The choice Between Smart, harsh, or Proportionate security strategies in Canada and Britain. Civil Rights and Security, 259–329.

Rosino, M. L. (2017). “A problem OF Humanity”: The human rights framework and the struggle for racial justice. Sociology of Race and Ethnicity, 4(3), 338–352.

“Take back the streets” Repression and criminalization of protest around the world. (2013).