human dignity

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According to the modern view, human dignity is on the one hand the value that is assigned to all people equally and regardless of their distinguishing features such as origin, gender, age or status; and on the other hand the value with which the human being as a species places himself above all other living beings and things. As a legal term , human dignity in German-speaking legal philosophy and theory includes certain basic rights and legal claims of people and must be distinguished from the colloquial meaning of the term dignity .

According to Christian Starck and other constitutional lawyers, human dignity is rooted in a Christian tradition as well as in ancient philosophy and thus includes a certain view of human rights (see also: Crown of Creation ) ; the philosopher Herbert Schnädelbach traces the term back to the Jewish religion and the Stoa . On the legal-philosophical level , human rights and a. anchored by human dignity in the German constitution. At the level of legal theory , the question arises to what extent the further development of laws that limit fundamental rights such as freedom of expression , the right to self-determination, protection from torture and execution , the right to participation or health can take place on the basis of human dignity. Within German legal theory, the notion that human dignity is timeless as a basic ethical principle and that it stands above any form of government as a yardstick is not unreservedly represented, although according to the wording of Article 1 of the Basic Law, it is universally valid.

On an ideological-religious level , it is discussed what is understood by human dignity in the legal ethical questions of the beginning and the end of life. From a psychological point of view, the concept of human dignity was concretized by the Swiss-American psychiatrist Léon Wurmser . He sees shame as the guardian of human dignity.

Other legal traditions often do not rely on a principle of human dignity to infer human rights. They see human rights as a primary inalienable good or natural right , or derive them from other principles (e.g. utilitarianism , contract theory ).


Western-occidental tradition

The idea of ​​human dignity has deep historical roots. Forerunners of what is understood today by “human dignity” can already be found in part in Roman antiquity, in early Judaism and in Christianity . The latter primarily include the idea of man being made in the image of God ( Gen 1.27  EU ) and the resulting fundamental equality of man. The idea of ​​equality first manifested itself as "equality of all believers before God". Paul expresses this idea radically: “There are no longer Jews and Greeks, no more slaves and free people, no more men and women; for you are all 'one' in Christ Jesus ”(Gal 3:28 f).


Greek antiquity ( pre-Socratics , Plato, Aristotle) ​​did not know the concept of human dignity. If one assumes that an approach is to be sought in the humanum , then Aristotle, for example, sees this in reason (logos). However, human dignity according to the understanding of the Basic Law is a legal claim . For Aristotle, it does not follow from the fact that man is a rational being that he has certain claims to others or to society.

Even from the Nicomachean Ethics , apart from the discussion of the two types of justice, it is difficult to read a concept of human dignity. In the concept of distributive justice, for example, the individual should be allocated according to the principle of worthiness and merit. The worthiness is measured according to what he has done for the community. Roman antiquity sees it differently. Two terms play a role here.

Cicero's work is fundamental to the concept of humanitas . There, however, the term is understood as a criterion to distinguish it from the animal, but not as a personal characteristic. Only with the concept of dignitas (= dignity , worthiness ). first approaches to the concept of human dignity can be seen. Relevant for this are Cicero's works De re publica ("On the State") and De officiis ("On Duty-Based Action, On Duties").

1) Cicero regards dignitas as a social concept in De re publica and De officiis

  • as gradable. In the context of his constitutional discussion (kingship or regnum, aristocracy or democracy) he criticizes the rule of the people because then the dignity is unreasonably evenly distributed:
[...] and if everything is directed by a people, no matter how just and measured, the uniformity is unreasonable because it does not know any levels of dignity. (Cic.rep. I, 43), see also I, 42.
  • as a derivative term. For Cicero, dignity is not an inferred term, but can be traced back to other terms such as laus (praise), honor (honor) or gloria (fame). So there is for him many kinds of "Will" (dignitates) (see. Cic.rep. I, 53)
  • as one of many equal human qualities.
  • as a social relation between the individual and the community. This dimension describes the usefulness (utilitas) of the deeds for the community. Accordingly, not all deeds are useful for a community and thus do not increase the dignity of the individual. The usefulness must also be left to the judgment of the community.
  • as a property to be acquired personally. Dignity must be earned

From this it becomes clear that Cicero stands in the Aristotelian tradition, according to which dignity and worthiness are always related to the personal achievement of an individual for his community. You have to earn dignity and you can lose it. For Cicero, who recognized the achievements of Caesar, Caesar was both a practical-political and a theoretical problem. One can even go so far as to say that Cicero sharpened his ideas on Caesar. So he recognizes Caesar's achievements for the community, but not Caesar's step when he called for them. Dignitas is therefore not an unconditional claim that can be derived directly from services. Cicero points out that the community remains the final judicial authority and not the individual. By crossing the Rubicon (and driving out the Senate), Caesar demanded something that cannot be demanded.

2) Cicero's concept of an innate human dignity in De officiis

Cicero opposes the social concept of dignity with a concept of human dignity. This dignity, it seems, cannot be revoked. Wherever Cicero speaks of humans as opposed to animals, he grants all humans a dignity.

Question: Marcus, by what means or why does a person maintain his dignity? Cicero: Because we all share in reason, in this excellence with which we surpass animals. ( I, 106)
Question: And what do you have to do to preserve this dignity that is bestowed on us as human beings? Cicero: Lust is not worthy of the excellence of man, so that it is necessary to despise and reject it. ( I, 106)

Humans receive dignity because, in contrast to animals, they are reasonable, initially regardless of their achievements. He has to maintain this dignity through appropriate behavior (no luxury, no ostentation). How is this to be understood and how does it fit together with Cicero's social concept of dignity? Common interpretations assume that humans initially have a natural dignity that is delivered at birth (but not innate, which one cannot lose!). However, he can maintain this dignity, increase it or lose it in whole or in part. This depends entirely on his performance, as described under 1.). One could compare this with a glass that is filled with a certain amount of liquid (= dignity ) at birth . is filled. In the course of life, the fluid can increase or decrease.

If one summarizes the ancient conception of human dignity again, it can be reduced to two properties. Dignity is

  • gradable, because depending on the deeds, the character and the disposition of the individual in relation to his usefulness for the community, and
  • outwardly , since one can lose one's dignity if one does inhonestum (immoral things ) and indecorum (improper things).

However, this also makes it clear that in antiquity, where the concept of inalienable dignity / worthiness is missing from human beings as a species, and where there is talk of dignity, this was not formulated as a universal claim, but as a personal one.

In early Christianity, human dignity played a role, but was understood differently.


The concept of human dignity was only formulated into a comprehensive philosophical concept in the course of the European Enlightenment in the 17th and 18th centuries .

Samuel von Pufendorf (1632–1694) explains:

"Man is of the highest dignity because he has a soul that is distinguished by the light of the understanding, by the ability to judge things and to decide freely, and which is familiar with many arts."

In this way, Pufendorf connects the idea of ​​human dignity with the idea of ​​the soul , with the idea of reason and with the idea of ​​(decision) freedom .


With Charles Malik , a Lebanese man played a key role in the drafting of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights , which refers to human dignity in the preamble and in Art.

Likewise, according to the preamble of the Cairo Declaration of Human Rights in Islam, people are given dignity. This is derived - like the entire declaration - "from the noble Koran and the pure Sunnah of the Prophet". Sura 17, verse 70, is seen as a reference: "Now we have truly given the children of Adam (human) dignity [...] and continued to favor them over all things of our creation."

Buddhism and Confucianism

Even non-European religions and philosophies such as Buddhism and Confucianism recognize the recognition of the value and dignity of individual human life. This is Gregory Paul the Chinese philosopher Mencius (ca. 370-290 v. Chr.).

With Peng-chun Chang , a Chinese person played a key role in the drafting of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights , which refers to human dignity in the preamble and in Article 1.

Universal Declaration of Human Rights of December 10, 1948

The UN General Assembly proclaimed on December 10, 1948 in the Universal Declaration of Human Rights in Article 1: “All human beings are born free and equal in dignity and rights. They are endowed with reason and conscience and should meet one another in a spirit of brotherhood . "

German history

Weimar Constitution

The Weimar Constitution of 1919 stipulated in Art. 151 at the beginning of Section Five “ Economic Life ”:

"The order of economic life must correspond to the principles of justice with the aim of ensuring a dignified existence for all."

The formulation goes back to Ferdinand Lassalle , the first president of the General German Workers' Association founded in 1863 .

time of the nationalsocialism

After the " seizure of power " by the National Socialists on January 30, 1933, the Weimar Constitution was gradually overridden or replaced by new legal principles, such as the prohibition of other parties . Instead of human dignity it was now: “Right is what is useful to the people!” And “The Führer protects the right!” The worldview of National Socialism with its racism and anti-Semitism , its theory of “ living space ” and “ subhuman ”, contradicted its social Darwinism the democratic traditions. The denial of human dignity takes place especially during the Second World War in the concentration and extermination camps , in the so-called " euthanasia " (" Action T4 "), in the commissioner's order to murder the political commissioners of the Red Army , the Night and Fog Decree and the other " Führer Orders " culminated. The height of human contempt under Hitler was the Holocaust , with the genocide of 6 million European Jews .

Most of these laws , orders and edicts were gradually repealed by the Allies after 1945. But it was not until the 1980s that the Nazi court judgments were declared null and void in their entirety.

Constitutions of the GDR

Constitution of October 7, 1949

Following on from the Weimar Reich constitution, certain Article 19 (economic order) of the constitution of the GDR of October 7, 1949:

The order of economic life must conform to the principles of social justice; it must ensure a dignified existence for everyone.
Constitution of April 6, 1968

Art. 19 of the constitution of the GDR of April 6, 1968:

  1. Respect for and protection of the dignity and freedom of personality are imperative for all state organs, all social forces and every individual citizen. ...

Whether the state organs in particular observed or ignored the requirement could not be verified due to the lack of control of their measures by a constitutional court or administrative courts .

Current developments

Due to its origin, the idea of ​​human dignity is viewed by some non-European critics as being purely western and culturally bound.

Utilitarian philosophy contradicts the idea of ​​basic human dignity . The most prominent representative in the discussion of the 1980s and 1990s was the Australian Peter Singer . In his ethics - following on from Werner Catel and Joseph Fletcher - he takes the view that human dignity and with it the “right to life” are based on the ability to want to continue to live or on the ability to see oneself as a continuous mental subject got to".

A philosophical justification of human dignity was presented by representatives of discourse ethics such as Dietrich Böhler . There, in a critical recourse to Immanuel Kant, the view is represented that in the ability to discourse, to rationally argue or to express a position that itself claims to be valid, implicitly the obligation to recognize the human dignity of all possible discourse partners (all people ) is contained and can be demonstrated philosophically.

In Germany in the 1990s, among other things, in the political debate about genetic engineering , abortion or prenatal diagnostics , discussions about how far human dignity extends. In the ethics debate around the embryo protection law as was the human embryo - the recourse to Kant's definition - a personal human dignity, that is granted an absolute and unverfügbares right to exist, to withdraw it at any technical and economic use. This species argument is one of the four SKIP arguments . The background to the ethics debate was the fear that humans would not only be exposed to an industrialized environment, but could become a product of the industrial design of life itself, and that its biological design could ultimately no longer evade economic interests.

Human dignity with Kant

The human being as an “ end in itself” must never only be a “means to an end”.

In his foundation of the metaphysics of morals, the philosopher Immanuel Kant defined respectworthiness and human dignity in the broadest sense. For him, the basic principle of human dignity is that

  • Respect for the other,
  • the acknowledgment of his right to exist and
  • in the recognition of a fundamental equality of all people.

Kant assumes that man is an end in itself and therefore must not be subjected to a purpose that is alien to him. That means: Human dignity is violated when a person uses another person merely as a means for his own ends - for example through slavery, oppression or fraud:

“The beings, whose existence is based not on our will but on nature, nevertheless, if they are unreasonable beings, only have a relative value, as means, and are therefore called things, whereas rational beings are called persons because their nature is them as an end in itself, d. i. as something that must not be used merely as a means, therefore as far as it restricts all arbitrariness (and is an object of respect). "

Kant's views can be found today in the object formula with which a violation of human dignity is constitutionally determined. The idea of human moral autonomy also goes back to Kant .

Human dignity as a constitutional principle

The constitutions of many democracies protect rights and freedoms in themselves, without reference to any principle of human dignity. The Bill of Rights of 1776, for example, names as inalienable rights “the right to life and liberty and the possibility to acquire and keep property and to strive for and achieve happiness and security”.

Human dignity is cited as the (partly supreme) principle of the constitutional order in the following member states of the European Union :

Also in

human dignity is expressly mentioned as the highest principle.

In addition, the Treaty establishing a Constitution for Europe of 2004, Part I, Article I-2, and Article 2 of the Treaty on European Union, contain the protection of human dignity.

Basic Law of the Federal Republic of Germany

Human dignity is inviolable (Art. 1 Para. 1 Basic Law)

At the regional court in Frankfurt am Main

Respect for human dignity by the state and its representatives is laid down in Article 1, Paragraph 1 of the Basic Law:

"Human dignity is inviolable. To respect and protect them is the duty of all state authority. "
Historical background

The guarantee of human dignity as the highest value of the constitutional order has no model in other Western constitutions. Its inclusion in the Basic Law can be traced back to the experience of German history as a result. The basic right is thus to be understood as a conscious reaction to the massive disregard for human dignity by the Nazi state . The discrimination against Jews and the handicapped at that time was justified with their allegedly inferior humanity.

The same can be said of many other historical human rights violations (discrimination against slaves, Indians, women or unborn children). The establishment of inviolable human dignity in the Basic Law should prevent any legalization of the deprivation of fundamental rights or human rights. Because every member of the human family ( homo sapiens ) is entitled to human dignity in the same way, regardless of their other characteristics or abilities. It cannot therefore be measured, can neither grow nor shrink, nor can it be withdrawn from someone. If human existence or human dignity were declared to be a “variable variable”, then all human rights and basic rights could be relativized at will. Respect for human dignity is therefore a prerequisite and guarantee for the validity of all other human rights. Since even democratic majorities are not immune to such misjudgments , a change in the content of Article 1 GG was expressly forbidden in the German constitution (by Article 79.3 of the Basic Law ) .

Human dignity as the highest value of the Basic Law

According to the established case law of the Federal Constitutional Court, human dignity is the highest value decision of the Basic Law. Their top position is secured by Article 79.3 of the Basic Law ( eternity clause ). The latter means that the principle of human dignity is withdrawn from access by the constitution-amending legislature, an abolition would be inadmissible. Human dignity cannot be taken away from anyone because it is inherent in human beings within the framework of the system of values ​​through their very existence. However, the claim to respect linked to this existence ( Article 1, Paragraph 1, Sentence 2 of the Basic Law) can be violated, which the human being can formulate as a legal personality. Human dignity as an outflow of being human is protected by protecting it from violations of the right to respect. To put it positively, the state has to do everything that protects human dignity and at the same time refrain from doing anything that affects human dignity. Thus, human dignity is a right of defense against public authority and the state-supporting organs involved in the decision-making processes on the one hand and a right to perform on the other. The legislature and the executive are obliged to issue generally binding norms that guarantee the best possible protection of human dignity. The state and its courts must work to ensure that not only public authorities but also third parties respect the human dignity of every individual.

The concept of human dignity
Dignity as a (natural) characteristic and (cultural) design mandate
Definition of the Federal Constitutional Court

The Federal Constitutional Court has defined the concept of human dignity in a majority of its decisions . The court emphasizes the right to value and respect that humans have solely by virtue of their being human. This claim to value and respect exists regardless of a person's characteristics, their physical or mental abilities and capabilities, and their social status. The Federal Constitutional Court stated about the concept of human dignity in decision 1 BvR 698/89 of the First Senate of October 20, 1992:

It is linked to the human claim to social value and respect, which forbids making human beings a mere object of the state or exposing them to treatment that fundamentally questions their subject quality. Human dignity in this sense is not only the individual dignity of the respective person, but the dignity of the human being as a species. Everyone has them, regardless of their characteristics, achievements or social status. It is also peculiar to those who cannot act meaningfully because of their physical or mental condition. It is not lost even through “unworthy” behavior. It cannot be taken from anyone. What is vulnerable, however, is the claim to respect that arises from it.

In 2006, the Federal Constitutional Court added in its ruling on the Aviation Security Act 2005 :

Human life is the vital basis of human dignity as a supporting constitutional principle and the highest constitutional value (see BVerfGE 39, 1 <42>; 72, 105 <115>; 109, 279 <311>). Everyone has this dignity as a person, regardless of their characteristics, their physical or mental condition, their achievements and their social status (cf. BVerfGE 87, 209 <228>; 96, 375 <399>). It cannot be taken from anyone. However, the claim to respect that arises from it is vulnerable (cf. BVerfGE 87, 209 <228>). This also applies regardless of the probable duration of individual human life (see BVerfGE 30, 173 <194> on the human right to respect for his or her dignity even after death).

With regard to this relationship between the right to life and human dignity, the state is prohibited on the one hand from intervening in the basic right to life through its own measures in violation of the prohibition on disregarding human dignity. On the other hand, he is also required to protect all human life. This duty of protection requires the state and its organs to protect and promote the life of each individual; that means above all to protect it from illegal attacks and interventions by third parties (see BVerfGE 39, 1 <42>; 46, 160 <164>; 56, 54 <73>). This duty to protect is also based on Article 1, Paragraph 1, Sentence 2 of the Basic Law, which expressly obliges the state to respect and protect human dignity (see BVerfGE 46, 160 <164>; 49, 89 <142>; 88, 203 <251>).

What this obligation means in concrete terms for state action cannot be conclusively determined once and for all (see BVerfGE 45, 187 <229>; 96, 375 <399 and 399>). Article 1, Paragraph 1 of the Basic Law protects the individual not only from humiliation, branding, persecution, ostracism and similar acts by third parties or by the state itself (see BVerfGE 1, 97 <104>; 107, 275 <284>; 109 , 279 <312>). Based on the idea of ​​the constitution that it belongs to the essence of the human being to freely determine oneself and to develop freely, and that the individual can demand to be recognized in the community as an equal member with intrinsic value (see BVerfGE 45, 187 <227 f.>), It generally excludes the obligation to respect and protect human dignity rather to make people a mere object of the state (cf. BVerfGE 27, 1 <6>); 45, 187 <228>; 96, 375 <399>). Any treatment of people by public authorities that fundamentally questions their subject quality, their status as a legal subject, is therefore absolutely forbidden (see BVerfGE 30, 1 <26>; 87, 209 <228>; 96, 375 <399> ) by failing to respect the value that every person has for his own sake, by virtue of being a person (cf. BVerfGE 30, 1 <26>; 109, 279 <312 f.>). When such treatment is available must be specified in each individual case with a view to the specific situation in which a conflict may arise (see BVerfGE 30, 1 <25>; 109, 279 <311>).

The state encounters the representation of the human being within the framework of all his existing qualities by specifically serving the human being. The state draws its legitimacy to act or not act towards people from the system of values ​​laid down in the Basic Law, whose highest basic value and root of all basic rights is human dignity. It is the only constitutional norm that has an absolutely effective legal character. Neither can they normative in their essence touched be, nor can they be limited to, not even by other fundamental rights.

The Federal Constitutional Court affirms the quality of fundamental rights in Article 1 of the Basic Law, as human dignity comes under the heading before Article 1 of the Basic Law (“The Fundamental Rights”). The court thus opposes the wording of Article 1, Paragraph 3 of the Basic Law, which, according to its wording, mentions “the following fundamental rights”. Irrespective of the much-discussed wording of Article 1, Paragraph 3 of the Basic Law, Article 1, Paragraph 1 of the Basic Law itself is accorded the status of a fundamental right, which triggers direct binding of the executive. Thus, all (simple legal) provisions are to be interpreted in the light of human dignity; a norm is therefore unconstitutional if it constitutes a violation of Article 1, Paragraph 1 of the Basic Law. The Federal Constitutional Court often uses Article 1, Paragraph 1 of the Basic Law in connection with the general right of personality. In these cases the question of human dignity as a fundamental right does not arise anyway.

The Federal Constitutional Court shares the above findings, insofar as they have not been substantiated by itself. With regard to the relationship between the right to life and human dignity, the state is forbidden from interfering with the fundamental right to life through its own measures and commands it to protect and promote the life of each individual and to protect them from illegal attacks by third parties.

Even after the h. M. in literature , human dignity is the highest basic right. According to Article 1, Paragraph 3 of the Basic Law, fundamental rights bind all executive powers. According to a lesser opinion , all basic rights are based on human dignity, which is why Art. 1 GG is the root of all basic rights. All other provisions are to be interpreted in the light of the importance of human dignity, with the result that any violation of human dignity leads to the unconstitutionality of the respective norm, unless an interpretation of the disputed norm in accordance with the constitution is possible.

Definition in scientific comments on the Basic Law

Relevant definitions of the content of the term human dignity can be found in the leading comments on the Basic Law Maunz / Dürig / Herzog / Scholz , Münch / Kunig, Bruno Schmidt-Bleibtreu / Klein , Horst Dreier or Sachs .

Günter Dürig's earlier, as it were, natural law classification “Every person [is] a person by virtue of his spirit, who sets him apart from impersonal nature and enables him to make his own decision to become aware of himself, to determine himself and himself and herself Environment. ” Is currently (within the same comment) a relativization by Matthias Herdegen :“ Despite the categorical claim to dignity of all people, the type and degree of dignity protection are quite open to differentiations that take the concrete circumstances into account. ” Ernst-Wolfgang praised this approach Böckenförde is critical of the problem of embryo protection . The Federal Constitutional Court took up the idea again in its 2006 judgment on the Aviation Security Act. According to this, according to the value system of the Basic Law, the human being is a being who "determines (about) himself in freedom."

In the context of Art. 1 GG, human dignity is understood as an “essential characteristic of every human being”, but also as a mandate to the state. Each individual is also an addressee of human dignity: the assumption of moral autonomy leads to the right of every person to free development of personality.

Essential feature and design mandate

Art. 1 GG sees human dignity on the one hand as an essential characteristic of every person, on the other hand as a creative mandate to the state and, within the framework of its moral autonomy, to the individual:

The assumption of moral autonomy of the human being leads to the right of every human being to free development of the personality . In connection with the inevitably linked with human dignity general right to privacy in the context of the so-called spheres theory , the social sphere of man, that is his behavior in public, the privacy that concerns the narrow personal lives of people, especially his family and human intimacy, Core area of ​​all private life, to be observed.

Sometimes it is concluded from this that there is a tension between human characteristics and the state's mandate, which would even be exacerbated by the inviolability of the extensive law. As an essential characteristic, human dignity is on the one hand inalienable and (according to natural law) predetermined, on the other hand it must first be established and acquired within the scope of the state's organizational mandate. If, on the other hand, human dignity is actually inviolable, then it does not need to be protected and respected. This then raises the question of whether an existing issue is formulated in the Basic Law (“is inviolable”) or whether the existence of the issue is merely suggested. According to Dürig, the Basic Law only wanted to formulate a demand of the highest strength under the suggestion of a fact. Art. 1 GG should therefore be read as: The human dignity of every person (by state violence and others) may under no circumstances be compromised.

Basically, the problem is only postponed because it is implicitly admitted that human dignity can be affected (and also restricted). However, this leaves the conception of the essential feature.

However, this apparent contradiction is resolved if the two terms “human dignity” and “claim to respect” were viewed in a differentiated manner: human dignity itself is inviolable and inviolable as an essential characteristic; the resulting claim to respect is a legal claim with a design mandate. The latter is very much vulnerable and therefore in need of protection. What is required is a respectful treatment of people who correspond to their human dignity. In this respect, terms such as “violation of human dignity” are misleading, as incompatible terms are combined. Correctly, even if the presentation is more complicated, it should read: "Violation of the claim to respect for human dignity". One would also have to speak of “human (dignity) despising treatment”.

The individual must not be made a mere object

According to the “ object formula ” of the Federal Constitutional Court, human dignity gives rise to the right of every person to be treated in all state proceedings as a subject and never as a mere object; the individual therefore has a right to participate. He must be able to influence any state behavior that affects him. It is therefore unquestionably forbidden that public authority treats a person in such a way that his subject quality and his status as a legal subject are fundamentally called into question.

In 2005, the Federal Constitutional Court explained the principle derived from human dignity, according to which the individual must not be made a mere object, using the example of the penal system:

Human dignity as the highest value of the Basic Law and the supporting constitutional principle is linked to the social value and claim to respect of the human being, which forbids making him a mere object of the state or exposing him to treatment that fundamentally questions his subject quality. It is unique to everyone, regardless of their characteristics, their achievements or their social status. What individual respect for human dignity requires cannot be completely resolved by the respective social conditions (cf.BVerfGE 96, 375 <399 and 399> with further references).

This right to respect for his dignity cannot be denied even to the offender. In the execution of sentences as well as in the judicial process, it must be noted that human dignity prohibits inhuman, degrading punishment and the perpetrator may not be degraded to the mere object of execution in violation of his constitutionally protected social value and respect claim (cf.BVerfGE 72, 105 < 115 f.> With further references). The basic prerequisites for the individual and social existence of man must be preserved. From Article 1, Paragraph 1 of the Basic Law in conjunction with the principle of the welfare state, the state's obligation, especially for the execution of sentences, can be derived to grant the minimum subsistence level that constitutes a decent existence in the first place (see BVerfGE 45, 187 (228); BVerfG, 2nd Chamber of the Second Senate, NJW 1993, p. 3190).

In its decision on the Aviation Security Act of February 15, 2006, the Federal Constitutional Court once again described the ethical and legal standards that are binding on the legislature:

  1. Under the validity of Article 1, Paragraph 1 of the Basic Law (guarantee of human dignity), it is inconceivable to intentionally kill innocent people on the basis of a legal authorization.
  2. Human life and human dignity enjoy the same constitutional protection regardless of the length of the physical existence of the individual.
  3. Only those funds that are in accordance with the constitution may be used to fulfill state protection obligations.

Any quantifying view of human life is therefore a violation of human dignity, e.g. B. the balancing of many human lives against a single one. Every human life is equally valuable, every human being has the same dignity. Each individual therefore has the right to have the state protect their lives. It is impermissible to sacrifice human life to protect other lives, even if those concerned are likely to have only a few minutes to live. Such a procedure would make people the object of state action and thus deny them the respect to which every person is entitled; it would be denied the protection that the state owes them (see above) precisely to those people whose lives are in extreme danger.

Right to be heard, Art. 103 GG

Art. 103 GG: Result of this value decision is z. B. the right to be heard . The task of the courts to make a final legal judgment on a specific life issue can usually not be solved without hearing the parties involved. This hearing is therefore a prerequisite for making the right decision. In addition, the dignity of the persondemandsthat their rights are not simply decreed by the authorities; the individual should not only be the object of the judicial decision, but he should have his say before a decision that affects his rights in order to be able to influence the procedure and its result.

Prohibitions resulting from human dignity

At the same time, prohibitions arise from human dignity , such as that of degrading punishment . For example, the death penalty has been abolished in Germany by federal constitutional law ( Art. 102 GG). This is followed by protective measures to preserve human identity, such as the right not to incriminate oneself, the prohibition of the use of lie detectors if the person concerned does not consent or the administration of a truth serum .

The Basic Law rules out the degrading treatment of people by state organs as incompatible with their dignity. According to the object formula , no person may be degraded to a mere object of state power, insofar as their subject quality is thereby called into question (see judgment of the Federal Constitutional Court of December 15, 1970). The basic prerequisites for the individual and social existence of humans must be guaranteed by the state (see judgment of the Federal Constitutional Court of June 21, 1977).

Also § 136a Code of Criminal Procedure is directly associated with the obligation of the State of Art. 1 GG to respect human dignity and protect: Freedom of make decisions and to manifest his will of the accused may not be adversely affected by abuse, by fatigue, by physical Intervention, drug administration, torture, deception or hypnosis. Coercion may only be used insofar as the law of criminal procedure allows it. The threat of a measure that is inadmissible according to its regulations and the promise of an advantage not provided for by law are prohibited. Measures that impair the accused's ability to remember or understand are not permitted. The aforementioned prohibitions apply regardless of the consent of the accused. Statements made in violation of this prohibition may not be used even if the accused consents to the use ( Section 136a StPO).

Lock spike insert

The use of Lockspitzel can also interfere with human dignity according to the case law of the Federal Constitutional Court.

Genetic Fingerprint / DNA Identity Establishment Act

For information on the constitutionality of the DNA Identity Determination Act ( DNA-IFG ), see the case law of the Federal Constitutional Court. as well as the basic right to informational self-determination .

No punishment without a law

According to Section 1 of the Criminal Code , an act can only be punished if the criminal liability was determined by law before the act was committed (see also Art. 7 of the European Convention on Human Rights (HRC)). This principle nulla poena sine lege is a result of Art. 1 Para. 1 GG and the rule of law principle of Art. 20 GG.

Fundamental equality of all people

In addition to the unchangeable dignity of the individual, human dignity also includes the equal dignity of all people, i.e. the claim to fundamental equality of all people despite actual differences: It is not permissible to treat someone as a second class person. Trafficking in women and children, stigmatization, branding, ostracism, all forms of racially motivated discrimination violate human dignity.

The state's obligation to protect within the scope of the Basic Law

The state's obligation to protect applies not only to its citizens , but to all people within the scope of the Basic Law. This is also of practical importance because the Basic Law naturally also applies to sovereign acts of German diplomatic missions. If z. If, for example, an embassy refugee in China reaches the embassy premises, the deportation would be an administrative act to which German constitutional law applies in full. With the result that politically persecuted persons have the right to asylum and may not be extradited to a foreign state authority without a formal procedure according to German rules. The area of ​​application of the Basic Law is the national territory, i.e. the coastal strip claimed under international law, the territory on the ground, in the air and the interior of the earth up to the center of the earth. It also applies to all acts of German sovereigns and state power, e.g. B. on ships flying the German flag, ex-territorial institutions of the Bundeswehr, but also for the act of an intelligence agent (himself - under local law - illegally active) or soldiers abroad, etc.

Since November 2013, a debate has been developing in Germany about the protection obligation in inpatient elderly care . Is there a general undersupply of people who live in old people's homes because the state makes insufficient resources available?

Obligation of the state to guarantee the subsistence level

The Federal Constitutional Court combines Art. 1 with Art. 20 of the Basic Law ( welfare state principle ) in order to “derive the state's obligation to provide the subsistence level that is essential for a dignified existence”.

Commitment of the state for the worldwide principle of human rights

The Basic Law also obliges the state to campaign for the principle of human rights worldwide. The form and extent of this is at the discretion of the government and legislature. For example, the Federal Republic of Germany has signed up to international treaties, is a member of the United Nations, a signatory state to the European Convention on Human Rights and has committed itself to complying with the decisions of the European Court of Human Rights. In Germany, the Basic Law obliges the state to enact private and public law regulations that are suitable for contributing as effectively as possible to the enforcement of human dignity outside of the state sphere. These include B. Legal provisions against discrimination.

Fundamental rights derived from human dignity

Immediately following Art. 1 GG, the Basic Law lists those basic rights that result from human dignity, such as the right to free development of one's personality , equality of all before the law , freedom of belief and conscience , freedom of opinion and the freedom of assembly , the right to property and inviolability of the home, etc.

Post-mortem effect

According to the prevailing opinion, Art. 1 GG also applies to the memory and reputation of the dead, so it has a post-mortem effect (see: Mephisto decision ). So even after death you do not lose your personal right to respect.

The so-called eternity guarantee

Art. 1 GG, including the commitment to human rights and the legally binding nature of fundamental rights, are subject to the special protection of a so-called eternity guarantee (see eternity clause ). According to Article 79 (3) of the Basic Law, an “amendment to this Basic Law which (...) affects the principles laid down in Articles 1 and 20 (...) is inadmissible." This denies the state authority to exert influence on the core of the Basic Law.

Legal cases of the Federal Constitutional Court

The Federal Constitutional Court is an independent constitutional body with the task of interpreting the Basic Law in a binding manner through its decisions . The conceptual definition of human dignity is problematic. Because it is inviolable, it is not possible to weigh up the content to what extent there has been an infringement. A violation cannot be justified and can therefore only be stated. Because Article 1 of the Basic Law is protected by the eternity guarantee in Article 79, Paragraph 3 of the Basic Law, every non-contradictory case law of the Federal Constitutional Court in this context is final and cannot be repealed by the legislature. Even if this cannot be read from the text itself, the Federal Constitutional Court qualifies human dignity as an independent basic right: "According to the case law of the Federal Constitutional Court, Article 1 of the Basic Law is one of the" supporting construction principles "that pervade all provisions of the Basic Law. The Basic Law regards the free human personality and its dignity as the highest legal value ”.

Regarding the definition of the concept of human dignity, the Federal Constitutional Court states: "To guard human dignity" means to use the pathetic word exclusively in its highest sense, for example by assuming that human dignity is only violated if the person is treated by the public authority that enforces the law, an expression of the contempt for the value that is due to the human being by virtue of being a person, that is, in this sense a "contemptuous treatment". If one does this anyway, Article 79.3 of the Basic Law is reduced to a prohibition on reintroduction, e.g. B. the torture, the stake and the methods of the Third Reich. However, such a restriction does not do justice to the conception and spirit of the Basic Law. Article 79 (3) GG in conjunction with Article 1 GG has a much more concrete content. The Basic Law recognizes that it places the free human personality on the highest level of the value order, its intrinsic value, its independence. In the Soraya judgment it states: “The value system of fundamental rights is centered on the human personality and dignity that freely develops within the social community.” It deserves respect and protection from all state power (Art. 1 and 2 Para. 1 GG). Such protection may above all be claimed by the private sphere of the human being, the area in which he wishes to remain alone, to make his own decisions and not to be bothered by interventions of any kind.

In principle, the BVerfG has adopted the property formula developed by Dürig based on Kant without restriction. “The individual must put up with those barriers to his freedom of action which the legislature draws to maintain and promote social coexistence within the limits of what is generally reasonable in the given circumstances; but the independence of the person must be preserved (...). This means that in the community too, every individual must be recognized as an equal member with intrinsic worth. It is therefore contrary to human dignity to make people mere objects in the state (...). The sentence, 'man must always remain an end in himself', applies unreservedly to all areas of law; because the inalienable dignity of man as a person consists precisely in the fact that he remains recognized as a self-responsible personality. ”(BVerfGE 45, 187, [227 ff]; [238 ff]. - Life imprisonment) However, the object formula is not sufficient either considers: “As far as the principle of inviolability of human dignity mentioned in Art. 1 GG is concerned, which according to Art. 79 Para. 3 GG may not be affected by a constitutional amendment, everything depends on the determination of the circumstances under which human dignity is violated can. Obviously, this cannot be said in general, but only in relation to the specific case. General formulas such as that man should not be degraded to a mere object of state authority can only indicate the direction in which cases of violation of human dignity can be found. Man is not infrequently a mere object not only of circumstances and social development, but also of law, insofar as he has to submit to his interests regardless of his interests. A violation of human dignity cannot be found in this alone. In addition, he must be exposed to a treatment that fundamentally questions his subject quality, or that the treatment in the concrete case is an arbitrary disregard for the dignity of the human being. so this in itself does not mean a violation of human dignity: “Man is not infrequently the object not only of conditions and social development, but also of the law to which he has to submit. Human dignity is not already violated by the fact that someone becomes the addressee of criminal prosecution measures, but it is violated when the quality of the subject is fundamentally called into question by the type of measures taken. This is the case when the treatment by public authorities fails to respect the value that everyone has for their own sake. "(BVerfGE 109, 279 - Housing monitoring, online documentation, Rn. 117)

In the following cases, the BVerfG affirmed a violation of human dignity: “It would not be compatible with human dignity if the state could claim the right to forcibly register and catalog people in their entire personality, be it also in the anonymity of a statistical survey, and thus to treat it as something that is accessible to an inventory in every respect. ”(BVerfGE 27, 1, 6 - Microcensus I)“ The basic requirements for individual and social existence of humans must be preserved stay. (...) With human dignity understood in this way, it would be incompatible if the state were to claim forcibly stripping people of their freedom without at least the chance for them to be able to enjoy freedom again. "(BVerfGE 45, 187, 228f. - Life imprisonment) “What the individual respect for human dignity requires cannot be completely resolved by the respective social conditions (...). A violation of the right can not only result in the humiliation, branding, persecution or ostracism of people (...), but also in the commercialization of human existence. "(BVerfGE 96, 375, [399 ff.] - child as harm)

With regard to the Asylum Seekers Benefits Act , the BVerfG has determined that the question of the subsistence level must not depend on the status of the beneficiary. "If the legislature wants to take into account the particularities of certain groups of people when determining the humane subsistence level, it may not differentiate across the board according to the residence status in the specific design of subsistence benefits. A differentiation is only possible if their need for essential services differs significantly from that of other needy people and this can consequently be proven in a substantively transparent procedure based on the actual needs of this group. "(BVerfGE 132, 134) The rescue of third parties is also The killing of innocents is not only a violation of the fundamental right to life (Art 2 GG), but also a violation of human dignity. "The authorization of the armed forces to shoot down an aircraft that is to be used against the lives of people in accordance with Section 14 (3) of the Aviation Security Act through direct action with armed force is with the right to life under Article 2 (2) sentence 1 of the Basic Law in Combination with the guarantee of human dignity in Article 1, Paragraph 1 of the Basic Law is incompatible, insofar as it affects people who are not involved on board the aircraft. ”(BVerfGE 133, 241) The link between the right to life and human dignity can also be found elsewhere, for example in the demand that the state has a special duty to protect in the event of danger to life and limb: “The state's duty to protect must be taken all the more seriously, the higher the rank of the legal interest in question within the values ​​of the Basic Law. As need not be explained in more detail, human life represents a maximum value within the constitutional order; it is the vital basis of human dignity and the prerequisite for all other basic rights ”(BVerfGE 39, 42 ff. - Abortion I).

Human dignity as the sum of all basic and human rights

Since it is difficult to formulate a final definition of human dignity, one can alternatively understand human dignity as the sum of all basic and human rights . Respect and protection of human dignity aim at the free development of the personality

with their corresponding derivatives


Article 41 of the Italian Constitution reads:

Private economic activity is free. It must not be in conflict with the common good or impair the security, freedom or human dignity of the individual. For the purpose of aligning and coordinating public and private economic activity with social goals, appropriate economic plans and economic control measures are laid down by law.


Art. 7 of theFederal Constitution of the Swiss Confederation:

Human dignity must be respected and protected.

Regulations regarding the protection of human dignity can also be found in Art. 118b ( research on humans ) and Art. 119 ( reproductive medicine and genetic engineering in the human area ) of the BV.

Republic of South Africa

Section 10. (Human dignity) of the Constitution of the Republic of South Africa gives everyone the right to respect and protection of their human dignity:

"Everyone has inherent dignity and the right to have their dignity respected and protected."

European Charter of Fundamental Rights of 2009

Sentences two to four of the preamble to the 2009 Charter of Fundamental Rights of the European Union read:

“Conscious of its spiritual, religious and moral heritage, the Union is founded on the indivisible and universal values ​​of human dignity, freedom, equality and solidarity. It is based on the principles of democracy and the rule of law. It puts the person at the center of its actions by establishing European citizenship and an area of ​​freedom, security and justice. "



Ancient philosophy


German classic

Current publications

  • Manfred Baldus : Struggles for Human Dignity - The Debates since 1949 , Suhrkamp, ​​Frankfurt am Main 2016. ISBN 978-3-518-29799-5 .
  • Christine Baumbach, Peter Kunzmann (eds.): Würde - dignité - godność - dignity. Human dignity in international comparison (=  Ta ethika 11). Herbert Utz Verlag, Munich 2010, ISBN 978-3-8316-0939-0 .
  • Heiner Bielefeldt : Discontinued model of human dignity? Why it is in question and why we must defend it . Herder Verlag, Freiburg im Breisgau 2011, ISBN 978-3-451-32508-3 .
  • Franz-Peter Burkard: Dignity. In: Peter Prechtl, Franz-Peter Burkard (Hrsg.): Metzler-Lexikon Philosophie. Terms and definitions. 3rd, expanded and updated edition. Metzler, Stuttgart [a. a.] 2008, ISBN 978-3-476-02187-8 .
  • Christoph Enders : Human dignity in the constitutional order. On the dogmatics of Art. 1 GG (=  Jus publicum , Volume 27). Mohr Siebeck, Tübingen 1997, ISBN 3-16-146813-9 (also: Freiburg (Breisgau), Univ., Habil.-Schrift, 1995/96).
  • Volker Gerhardt : The innate human dignity. Essays on biopolitics. ParErga, Berlin 2004, ISBN 3-937262-08-3 .
  • Rolf Gröschner , Oliver W. Lembcke (Hrsg.): The dogma of inviolability. An examination of the absolute claim to dignity (=  Politika 2). Mohr Siebeck, Tübingen 2009, ISBN 978-3-16-150019-0 .
  • Wilfried Härle , Reiner Preul (Ed.): Human Dignity (=  Marburg Yearbook Theology 17 = Marburg Theological Studies 89). Elwert, Marburg 2005, ISBN 3-7708-1279-4 .
  • Rolf-Peter Horstmann : Human dignity. In: Joachim Ritter , Karlfried founder (Hrsg.): Historical dictionary of philosophy. Volume 5: L - Mn. Completely revised edition. Schwabe, Basel [u. a.] 1980, ISBN 3-7965-0115-X , Sp. 1124-1127.
  • Klaus Krämer, Klaus Vellguth (Ed.): Human dignity. Discourses on universality and inalienability (=  ThEW 8). Herder Publishing House, Freiburg 2016.
  • Achim Lohmar: Wrong moral awareness. A critique of the idea of ​​human dignity. Felix Meiner, Hamburg 2017, ISBN 978-3-7873-3145-1 .
  • Axel Montenbruck : The idea of ​​human dignity and liberalism - two western beliefs. 3rd edition 2016, ISBN 978-3-946234-56-2 . ( online on the website of the University Library of the Free University of Berlin)
  • Sascha Müller: Human dignity and religion. The search for true freedom - metaphysical guides from Plato to Hegel (=  Munich Philosophical Contributions , Volume 23). Herbert Utz Verlag, Munich 2012, ISBN 978-3-8316-4150-5 .
  • Michael Quante : Human dignity and personal autonomy. Democratic values ​​in the context of the life sciences. Felix Meiner Verlag, Hamburg 2010, ISBN 978-3-7873-1949-7 .
  • Markus Rothhaar: Human dignity as a principle of law. A legal-philosophical reconstruction. Mohr Siebeck, Tübingen 2015, ISBN 978-3-16-153558-1 .
  • Peter Schaber: Instrumentalization and Dignity. Mentis, Paderborn 2010, ISBN 978-3-89785-711-7 .
  • Stefan Lorenz Sorgner : Human dignity according to Nietzsche. The story of a concept. Scientific Book Society, Darmstadt 2010, ISBN 978-3-534-20931-6 (also diss., Univ. Jena, diss.)
  • Michael Spieker: Concrete human dignity. About the idea, protection and formation of human dignity. Wochenschau Verlag, Schwalbach / Ts. 2012, ISBN 978-3-89974-816-1 .
  • Philipp Wallau: Human dignity in the basic legal system of the European Union (=  Bonn jurisprudential treatises , NF 4). Bonn University Press u. a., Bonn [u. a.] 2010, ISBN 978-3-89971-785-3 (also Diss., Univ. Bonn, 2009).
  • Franz J. Wetz (Ed.): Texts on human dignity. Reclam, Ditzingen 2011, ISBN 978-3-15-018907-8 .
  • Franz J. Wetz: Illusion of human dignity - rise and fall of a basic value. Klett-Cotta, 2005, ISBN 3-608-94122-3 .
  • Reinhold Zippelius : The guarantee of human dignity. In: Law and Justice in the Open Society. 2nd edition 1996, chap. 24, ISBN 3-428-08661-9 .


Online audio contributions

Web links

Wiktionary: Human dignity  - explanations of meanings, word origins, synonyms, translations

Individual evidence

  1. With relevant evidence Christian Starck: The democratic constitutional state: shape, foundations, threats. Mohr Siebeck, Tübingen 1995, ISBN 3-16-146442-7 , p. 193.
  2. Herbert Schnädelbach : “The curse of Christianity. The seven birth defects of an old world religion. A cultural balance sheet after two thousand years ” . In: The time . May 11, 2000.
  3. Wolfgang Huber : Human Rights / Human Dignity. In: Theological Real Encyclopedia. (TRE) 22/1992, pp. 577-602.
  4. ^ Christian Starck: The democratic constitutional state: shape, foundations, threats. Mohr Siebeck, 1995, p. 193.
  5. Ulrich Volp : Human dignity. A contribution to anthropology in the old church (=  Supplements to Vigiliae Christianae , Vol. 81). Brill, Leiden / Boston 2006, ISBN 90-04-15448-5 .
  6. ^ German translation of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights in Islam
  7. Dietmar von der Pfordten : Human Dignity , Section II.16 Non-European Traditions ?, p. 53
  8. Gregor Paul: Concepts of human dignity in classical Chinese philosophy , in Siegetsleitner / Knoepfler: Human dignity in intercultural dialogue , free belt i. Br. 2005, p. 67ff, quoted from Dietmar von der Pfordten : Human dignity
  9. a b c Franz Josef Wetz: Human dignity: can be touched?
  10. Ethics. 2nd edition 1994, p. 221.
  11. Dietrich Böhler: Discourse ethics and the principle of human dignity between idealization and responsibility for success. On the application of discourse ethics in politics, law and science. K.-O. Apel and M. Kettner. Suhrkamp, ​​Frankfurt am Main 1992, pp. 201-231.
  12. Immanuel Kant: Foundation for the Metaphysics of Morals II.
  13. ^ Constitutions of the Republic of Estonia
  14. ^ Constitutions of Greece
  15. Constitutions of Portugal
  16. ^ Constitutions of Spain
  17. Parte I - Titolo III - La Camera dei Deputati, Article 41. ( Memento of 26 March 2007 at the Internet Archive ) - Article 41 of the Italian Constitution.
  18. ^ Constitutions of Finland
  19. ^ Constitutions of the Kingdom of Sweden
  20. ^ Constitutions of Ireland
  21. The Constitution of Belgium
  22. The Constitution of Kenya - Revised Edition 2010 PDF on the website of the Kenyan Embassy in the USA. Retrieved April 2, 2019.
  23. BVerfGE 39, 1, 42; 72, 105, 115; 109, 279, 311.
  24. BVerfGE 87, 209 (228).
  25. BVerfGE 87, 209 (228); 96, 375 ff. (399).
  26. Prof. Dr. Axel Tschentscher: BVerfGE 87, 209 - Tanz der Teufel, paragraph 113 . Retrieved November 8, 2019.
  27. BVerfG, judgment of the First Senate of February 15, 2006 - 1 BvR 357/05 -, Rn. (1-156), here paragraph 119 . Federal Constitutional Court. Retrieved November 8, 2019.
  28. BVerfGE 39, 1, 42; 46, 160, 164; 56, 54, 73.
  29. ^ Ernst-Wolfgang Böckenförde: Human dignity was inviolable. In: Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung . No. 204, September 3, 2003, p. 33, and Does human dignity remain inviolable? ( Memento from June 9, 2007 in the Internet Archive ) In: Blätter für German and international politics . 10/2004, pp. 1215-1227; critical: Martin Nettesheim : The guarantee of human dignity between metaphysical exaggeration and mere balancing topos. In: Archives of Public Law. 130, 2005, pp. 71-113.
  30. BVerfG, judgment of February 15, 2006 - 1 BvR 357/05.
  31. Dieter Hesselberger : The Basic Law: Commentary for Political Education , 13th edition, Luchterhand, Munich / Unterschleißheim 2003, ISBN 978-3-472-05644-7 . Art. 1 no. 2.
  32. ^ Hesselberger: The Basic Law. Art. 1 marginal no. 2.
  33. Dürig: The fundamental right of human dignity. 1956.
  34. Matthias Herdegen , in: Theodor Maunz / Günter Dürig (ed.): Basic Law , 53rd Edition 2009, Art. 1 Paragraph 1 Rn. 33.
  35. The Federal Constitutional Court has resorted to the object formula several times, examples: BVerfGE 27, 1 , 6 - microcensus; BVerfGE 28, 386 , 301 - sentencing; BVerfGE 45, 187 , 228 - Life imprisonment.
  36. BVerfGE 30, 1 (26); 87, 209 ff. (228); 96, 375 ff. (399).
  37. BVerfG, decision of the 2nd Chamber of the First Senate of December 27, 2005 - 1 BvR 1359/05 -, Rn. 1-20, here paragraphs 12-13 . Federal Constitutional Court. Retrieved June 6, 2020.
  38. BVerfG, judgment of February 15, 2006, Az. 1 BvR 357/05; BVerfGE 115, 118 - Aviation Security Act.
  39. K. Grechenig, K. Lachmayer: To weigh up human lives - thoughts on the performance of the constitution. In: Journal for Legal Policy. (JRP) Issue 19, 2011, pp. 35–45.
  40. BVerfG, decision of January 8, 1959, Az. 1 BvR 396/55; BVerfGE 9, 89 - Heard on arrest warrant.
  41. BVerfG, decision of June 18, 1957, Az. 1 BvR 41/57; BVerfGE 7, 53 , 57; BVerfG, judgment of February 13, 1958, Az. 1 BvR 56/57; BVerfGE 7, 275 , 279; BVerfG, decision of January 8, 1959, Az. 1 BvR 396/55; BVerfGE 9, 89 , 95 - Listen to arrest warrant.
  42. BVerfG, judgment of December 15, 1970, Az. 2 BvF 1/69, 2 BvR 629/68 and 308/69; BVerfGE 30, 1 - interception judgment.
  43. a b BVerfG, judgment of June 21, 1977, Az. 1 BvL 14/76; BVerfGE 45, 187 - Life imprisonment.
  44. BVerfG, judgment of October 19, 1994, Az. 2 BvR 435/87; NJW 1995, 651.
  45. ^ Hesselberger: Basic Law Commentary. Art. 1 GG, Rn. 3.
  46. BVerfG, decision of December 14, 2000, Az. 2 BvR 1741/99, 276, 2061/00; BVerfGE 103, 21 , 33 - Genetic fingerprint .
  47. Heribert Prantl : The nursing emergency systematically violates the Basic Law. In: Süddeutsche Zeitung . November 16, 2013 (Link checked on December 31, 2013)
  48. VdK examines care constitutional complaint. VdK press release of December 18, 2013 (link checked on December 31, 2013)
  49. Rosemarie Will : Importance of human dignity in case law. In: From Politics and Contemporary History 35–36 / 2011.
  50. (BVerfGE 30, 39 - interception judgment)
  51. BVerfGE 6, 32 [41]; 7, 198 [205].
  52. BVerfGE 27, 1 [6]; BVerfGE 34, 290.