50+ Best Human Rights Quotes: Exclusive Selection

Human rights are moral principles or norms that describe certain standards of human behaviour and are regularly protected in municipal and international law. Inspirational human rights quotes will brighten up your day and make you feel ready to take on anything.

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Famous Human Rights Quotes

We declare that human rights are for all of us, all the time: whoever we are and wherever we are from; no matter our class, our opinions, our sexual orientation. Ban Ki-moon

To deny people their human rights is to challenge their very humanity. Nelson Mandela

Joy is found when you focus your energy on improving human dignity, human capacity and human values. Amit Ray

Activism works. So what I’m telling you to do now, is to act. Because no one is too small to make a difference. Greta Thunberg

No human being should be maltreated under any circumstances. We are all wonderful creation of God. May we affectionately love one another. Lailah Gifty Akita

human rights quotes

It means a great deal to those who are oppressed to know that they are not alone. Never let anyone tell you that what you are doing is insignificant. Desmond Tutu

Liberty must be engraved in our heart and practiced every minute to the letter and spirit. Abhijit Naskar

A right delayed is a right denied. Martin Luther King, Jr.

You’re not under attack when others gain rights and privileges you’ve always had. DaShanne Stokes

If you want to improve your quality of life and the quality of life for all women, never stop questioning society or calling for change. Justina De Pierris

Our hopes for a more just, safe, and peaceful world can only be achieved when there is universal respect for the inherent dignity and equal rights of all members of the human family. Phumzile Mlambo-Ngcuka

My dreams for the future are simple: work, a happy, healthy family, a lovely long motorcycle ride, and continuing the struggle to awaken people to the need for serious human rights reform. Mike Farrell

Injustice anywhere is a threat to justice everywhere. Martin Luther King

Some values must be universal, like human rights and the equal worth of every human being. Bjorn Ulvaeus

The candle burns not for us, but for all those whom we failed to rescue from prison, who were shot on the way to prison, who were tortured, who were kidnapped, who ‘disappeared’. That’s what the candle is for. Peter Benenson

Where, after all, do universal human rights begin? In small places, close to home — so close and so small that they cannot be seen on any maps of the world. […] Unless these rights have meaning there, they have little meaning anywhere. Without concerted citizen action to uphold them close to home, we shall look in vain for progress in the larger world. Eleanor Roosevelt

The day we become silent about the things that matter is the moment our lives begin to end. Shenita Etwaroo

Peace can only last where human rights are respected, where the people are fed, and where individuals and nations are free. Dalai Lama

The rights of every man are diminished when the rights of one man are threatened. John F. Kennedy

There may be times when we are powerless to prevent injustice, but there must never be a time when we fail to protest. Elie Wiesel

Letters aren’t just a simple gesture of solidarity, they become a source of hope and they have the potential to change people’s lives. I am living proof. Nestor Fantini

No voting on who gets to be people. N. K. Jemisin

There can be no peace without development, no development without peace, and no lasting peace or sustainable development without respect for human rights and the rule of law.  Jan Eliasson

People put up walls between each other – and it’s largely down to ignorance or negative media portrayals. We fail to realize there are so many good things and so many good people in this world. John Sato

Human rights are not only violated by terrorism, repression or assassination, but also by unfair economic structures that creates huge inequalities. Pope Francis

Peace does not just mean putting an end to violence or war, but to all other factors that threaten peace, such as discrimination, such as inequality, poverty. Aung San Suu Kyi

A political struggle that does not have women at the heart of it, above it, below it, and within it is no struggle at all. Arundhati Roy

We are way more powerful when we turn to each other and not on each other, when we celebrate our diversity… and together tear down the mighty walls of injustice. Cynthia McKinney

Human rights is the soul of our foreign policy, because human rights is the very soul of our sense of nationhood. Jimmy Carter

Let us remember: One book, one pen, one child, and one teacher can change the world. Malala Yousafzai

To deny people of their human rights is to challenge their very humanity. Nelson Mandela

The humanity of all Americans is diminished when any group is denied rights granted to others. Julian Bond

My government makes me angry. The police force makes me angry. Homophobia makes me angry. Luckily, anger is what motivates me. Zhanar Sekerbayeva

It is the purpose of government to see that not only the legitimate interests of the few are protected but that the welfare and rights of the many are conserved. Franklin D. Roosevelt

You can never be a first-class human being until you have learnt to have some regard for human frailty. Abhijit Naskar

Inspiring Human Rights Quotes

I never thought I’d be talking about police brutality and standing up for human rights. You never know what people are going through until it happens to you. Monicah Njoroge

Human rights must work to uplift human dignity. Rodrigo Duterte

When you deprive people of their right to live in dignity, to hope for a better future, to have control over their lives, when you deprive them of that choice, then you expect them to fight for these rights. Queen Rania Al Abdullah of Jordan

There can be no peace without justice and respect for human rights. Irene Khan

Get up, stand up, Stand up for your rights. Get up, stand up, Don’t give up the fight. Bob Marley

Life is not a matter of place, things or comfort; rather, it concerns the basic human rights of family, country, justice and human dignity. Imelda Marcos

Humanitarian work isn’t criminal, nor is it heroic. Helping others should be normal. Seán Binder

A right is not what someone gives you; it’s what no one can take from you. Ramsey Clark