Subject: Alleviation of suffering in the world: global universal income, world peace and a Universal Declaration of Rights expanded to include all sentient beings
Dear Mr Secretary General,
We, the undersigned organisations and individuals, envision a world where the alleviation of suffering is given the highest ethical priority. Recently, the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) decided to implement a basic income for refugees2, a strategy that will have positive consequences for their precarious economic and social situation. In this letter, we advocate the extension of a universal income3 to the entire world population, and explain why we believe this measure would have dramatic positive consequences – not just economically, but for the structural alleviation of suffering and the furthering of some of the UN’s own key objectives. We believe that approaching the subject of a universal income in synergy with other objectives offers opportunities to advance such central goals as world peace and fundamental rights. In this letter, we put the benefits of a global universal income into a larger context, and propose concrete steps that the UN can take to promote this approach.
- The potential benefits of a global universal income for social progress
- Support for refugees as a current first step in the implementation of a global universal income
- Next steps in implementing a global universal income
- Towards a state of perpetual peace
- Towards a Universal Declaration of Rights expanded to include all sentient beings
- Concrete next steps
Another Perspective on Fishes
The Alliance supports the campaign “Another Perspective on Fishes”, launched internationally in 2017, in its aim to raise awareness of the hidden suffering of the vast populations of aquatic animals.
The fact that aquatic animals have no voice can cause us to forget that they represent 97% of all animals killed for human food consumption. Their use as food causes suffering that is intense yet underrecognized. Despite the enormity of this suffering in proportion to total world suffering, it is not taken much into account: when we address animal suffering, we tend to think of land animals, and very little or not at all about aquatic animals. Raising awareness of this blind spot in our compassion is the main goal of the campaign “Another Perspective on Fishes”. The question of aquatic animals is one of the biggest ethical issues of our time.
It is important to note that if the consumption of aquatic animals stops, this will have a major impact on people whose lives depend closely on this industry. It is therefore necessary to address not only the suffering of aquatic animals but also the potential suffering inflicted on humans, both producers and consumers, who would be affected by the end of fishing. We should strive in particular to find new occupations for these populations and new dietary solutions. Compassion takes into account the suffering of all, nonhuman and human, without discrimination. Not taking into account the suffering of those affected by the fishing industry would also generate resistance to its abandonment and hinder the alleviation of the suffering of aquatic animals.
Consequently, the Alliance does not support the demand of a World Day for the End of Fishing, which is one aspect of the campaign, even though the slogan “end of fishing” could be useful for raising awareness. This demand directly attacks the many populations on this planet who are involved in fishing and even threatens their survival. Such a demand is counterproductive, in the current context, because of the intense resistance based on “legitimate defense” that it will necessarily elicit.
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