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The United States has refused to join the United Nations Human Rights Council since it was birthed in 2006 following the dissolving of its failed predecessor, the U.N. Commission on Human Rights. The Obama Administration changed course in March 2009 and now, for the first time, has submitted a report on the status of human rights in the U.S. to the Council, setting up the country to be judged by governments like those of Cuba, China, Saudi Arabia, Russia, Qatar, Pakistan and Egypt.
The U.S. report for the Council’s Universal Periodic Review states that the country’s participation is not a declaration of solidarity with “states that systematically abuse human rights…There is no comparison between American democracy and repressive states.” It is for this very reason that the U.S. should not be legitimizing the Council with its inclusion and subjecting the country to being judged by the non-democratic member states.
The slightest admission of fault by the U.S. will be amplified and used as a reason for condemnation. The report offers statistics about inequality for African-Americans, Hispanics, the disabled, homosexuals and Native Americans that will be used to reinforce anti-American propaganda class warfare rhetoric about capitalism causing oppression and racism. It also mentions Arizona’s controversial immigration law as a human rights issue, which Governor Jan Brewer has called “downright offensive.”
The report says the government is dedicating to fighting discrimination against Muslims and Arabs, inferring that a serious problem exists rather than boasting of the admirable restraint of the American people following the 9/11 attacks or the economic success of Muslims in the country. The FBI has found that the number of hate crimes directed at Muslims since 9/11 has sharply declined, with 10 times as many anti-Semitic incidents happening in 2008. There are actually more crimes committed against Jews, homosexuals and even Caucasians than Muslims. This is something that should be emphasized, but instead the narrative among those that use hate crimes, both real and fabricated, to frighten the Muslim world goes unchallenged.
The U.S. participation in the Human Rights Council has already been used to legitimize anti-democratic sentiments. The U.S. sponsored a “freedom of expression” resolution with Egypt that condemned “negative religious stereotyping.” Almost identical language was used by the Organization of the Islamic Conference to declare that “negative stereotyping or defamation of religions was a modern expression of religious hatred and xenophobia.” The resolution can thus be used as a weapon to accuse those that criticize radical Islam of being anti-Muslim.
If there is any doubt that the Council will be used as a platform against the West, the activity of the Council’s predecessor, the U.N. Commission on Human Rights, should be reviewed. Enemies of Israel banned the country from regional meetings and more resolutions were passed condemning Israel than all other countries combined. Already, the Council has condemned Israel on numerous occasions and remains silent on the human rights abuses of countries that are truly oppressive.
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