According to the United Nations, human rights:
“Ensure that a human being will be able to fully develop and use human qualities such as intelligence, talent, and conscience and satisfy his or her spiritual and other needs.”
Human rights reflect the minimum standards necessary for people to live with dignity. Human rights give people the freedom to choose how they live, how they express themselves, and what kind of government they want to support, among many other things. Human rights also guarantee people the means necessary to satisfy their basic needs, such as food, housing, and education, so they can take full advantage of all opportunities.
Finally, by guaranteeing life, liberty, equality, and security, human rights protect people against abuse by those who are more powerful.