Unfortunately, our world leaders are examples of the difference between what organizational theorists Chris Argyris and Donald A. Schön described as our espoused theory, or what we tell ourselves we believe, and our theory-in-use, or what we actually do.
While the leaders of the world say they believe in the principles of the Universal Declaration, unfortunately, they routinely violate those very principles.
In many organizations, our leaders may sincerely be unaware of how their theory-in-use differs from their espoused theory. In the case of human rights, however, it takes a pretty serious mental pretzle for a leader to believe that extrajudicial killings, torture, sexual assault and imprisonment without charge could possibly uphold the human rights principles set out in the Universal Declaration.
That’s why it is so important for each of us to hold governments worldwide accountable for bringing their practices into agreement with their expressed values.