The enforcement of economic, social and cultural rights is still largely a fight over ideas. Identified as such, the battle for their realization must still remain within the bounds of ideology. Ensuring that economic, social and cultural rights are respected and placed on an equal footing with civil and political rights encompasses a strong element of education for the public. In order to prevent human rights violations and to promote the protection of human rights it is important to communicate with people at the community level. Only when this has been achieved will we be able to think of human rights being protected with more certainty. For instance, “practices that deny rights to women, persons with a disability, or minorities cannot be adequately corrected unless people in local communities think it is appropriate and important to change.”
At the level of ideology this implies identifying abuses of economic, social and cultural rights as serious infringements on human dignity. Moreover, to achieve this, the general opinion must be based on a certain vision of unfairness when these rights are violated. This must in turn start with an understanding of the social nature of human beings. Radical forms of individualism need to be combated at the ideological level not only to achieve the goals set out in the UDHR, but because they are inherently false in their abstraction of individuals from their social contexts. While a complete refutation of individualism requires much more space than is available here, we can briefly counter it by emphasizing the essentially social nature of the development of human beings.
What this implies is that human beings require social recognition through dialogue. This dialogue takes place in social relationships which are themselves largely determined by the allocations of resources in a given society. The distribution of material resources largely “affects the choices people are able to make and the kinds of people they are able to be.” Bertrand Russell pointed out exactly this in his claim that “different conditions bring out different sides of our natures, which is why it is worth thinking about political arrangements at all.” Once humans become aware of the interdependence of self and society and the role of material resources in this dialectical relationship, it is easy to understand the moral basis for not only economic and social, but also cultural rights.
Proponents of radical individualism seem to overlook the fact that becoming an individual always occurs “under the guidance of cultural patterns, historically created systems of meaning in terms of which we give form, order, point, and direction to our lives.” Article 15 (a) of the ICESCR acknowledges this fact by requiring the State Parties to recognize the right of everyone partake in the cultural life of the community. We have reached a stage of recognizing all human beings as possessing a certain potential due to which we ought to accord them the respect which they deserve. That potential is something all humans share and is the basis of sameness and equality. There is another vital need, however, which arises out of this principle and that is the need to be recognized for what one is. It is important to such an extent that “nonrecognition or misrecognition can inflict harm, can be a form of oppression, imprisoning someone in a false, distorted, and reduced mode of being.”
The theoretical implications for the endorsement of the indivisibility and interdependence of human rights are there. Yet, in the field of praxis the matter becomes somewhat more difficult. One of the reasons for this is the unfair distribution and level of functioning of mechanisms that promote the various rights. The vehicles of human rights promotion are also unequally developed worldwide. This is directly related to non-governmental organizations (NGOs) and international non-governmental organizations (INGOs) in the field of human rights.
Allan McChesney, Promoting and Defending Economic, Social and Cultural Rights, (American Association for the Advancement of Science, 2000), [online] http://shr.aaas.org/escr/handbook.
 Fred Twine, Citizenship and Social Rights. The Interdependence of Self and Society (London: SAGE Publications Ltd., 1994), 7.
 Alan Ryan, ‘The Moderns: Liberalism Revived’, in Brian Redhead (ed.), Plato to NATO, 176.
 Clifford Geertz, The Interpretation of Culture, quoted in Hoyt L. Edge, A Constructive Postmodern Perspective on Self and Community: From Atomism to Holism (New York: The Edwin Mellen Press, 1994), 26.
 Charles Taylor, Multiculturalism and ‘The Politics of Recognition’ (Princeton: Princeton University Press, 1992), 25.