Just when you thought the United Nations could not sink any lower, a UN panel has issued a report recommending that the United States pay “reparations” to African-Americans for its “legacy of colonial history, enslavement, racial subordination and segregation, racial terrorism and racial inequality.” The report accuses the United States of maintaining “institutional and structural racial discrimination and racism against people of African descent.”
The panel that issued this claptrap is the self-styled Working Group of Experts on People of African Descent, which reported on the visit of three of its members to the United States from January 19-29 2016. The Working Group of Experts on People of African Descent reports to the UN’s dysfunctional Human Rights Council, which the Obama administration decided to join and American taxpayers are thus helping to pay for.
The Working Group members met with representatives from various federal agencies, including the Department of State, the Department of Homeland Security, the Department of Housing and Urban Development, the Department of Health and Human Services, the Department of Labor, the Department of Justice and the Environmental Protection Agency. They also met with officials of the White House working on African-American issues, staff of the congressional black caucus, a member of the United States Senate and various state and local government officials. Finally, they met with hundreds of unidentified “African Americans from communities with a large population of people of African descent living in the suburbs, as well as with lawyers, academics and representatives of non-governmental organizations.”
The Working Group’s report channeled the language of the Black Lives Matter movement. In fact, the report’s authors went out of their way to praise Black Lives Matter.
The report charged that currently in the United States “a systemic ideology of racism ensuring the domination of one group over another continues to impact negatively on the civil, political, economic, social and cultural rights of African Americans today.” The fact that the country twice elected an African-American as president and that two African-Americans have served as the U.S. Attorney General during the last seven plus years seems to have eluded the report’s authors.
While acknowledging some progress since the long gone Jim Crow era, the Working Group chose to focus in its report on what it characterized as “alarming levels of police brutality and excessive use of lethal force by law enforcement officials, committed with impunity against people of African descent in the United States.”
The report’s authors shamelessly concluded that today’s “police killings and the trauma that they create are reminiscent of the past racial terror of lynching.”
Never mind that thousands of innocent blacks have been murdered by black criminals, not by the police who are trying to protect innocent lives in high crime neighborhoods.
Never mind that in many instances of police shootings resulting in the deaths of African-Americans, independent investigations have concluded that the police were dealing with armed perpetrators whom the police had reason to believe posed an imminent lethal threat.
Never mind that in some cases of police shootings resulting in the deaths of African-Americans, the police officer involved in the shooting was also African-American. And never mind that a recent study by a Harvard economist concluded : “On the most extreme use of force – officer involved shootings – we find no racial differences in either the raw data or when contextual factors are taken into account.”
Contrary to the Working Group’s irresponsible accusations, there is no pattern of wide-spread racism motivating white police across the country to systematically use lethal force against African-Americans. Moreover, unless the Working Group defines “impunity” as the same thing as “due process,” there is no impunity in the United States today for police who have committed an unjustifiable killing, particularly with the U.S. Justice Department ready to swoop in if local officials do not act swiftly enough.
The Working Group’s report also complained about a wide range of other matters that are entirely within the domestic jurisdiction of federal, state and local authorities to address, without interference by outside UN investigators. Indeed, the report sought outlandishly to delegitimize America’s constitutional system of federalism itself as imposing an undue burden on African-Americans: “The complex organizational structure of the legal system, with the independence of federal, state and county jurisdictions, and the lack of direct applicability of international human rights law and policies, creates gaps that impact deeply on the human rights of African Americans.”
The report charged that schools’ curricula do not sufficiently cover “the historical facts concerning the period of colonization, the transatlantic trade in Africans, and enslavement, which have been crucial to the organization of contemporary American society.” If America’s schools taught the curriculum according to the UN Working Group’s wishes, America’s children would be indoctrinated in warmed over radical left anti-imperialism ideology. Moreover, the kids would be able to run wild if the UN Working Group’s recommendation were implemented to prohibit disciplinary methods such as “use of restraint and seclusion” in favor of “Positive Behavioural Interventions” – whatever that means.
For all America’s past “injustices and crimes” against African-Americans, the UN Working Group of Experts on People of African Descent demands “reparatory justice.” In addition to asking for a “formal apology,” the Working Group says that the reparations it has in mind should include “an African knowledge programme, psychological rehabilitation, technology transfer, financial support, and debt cancellation.”
The Working Group also wants the United States, in all branches and at the federal and state levels of government, to “take steps to give effect to the decisions, resolutions, views, observations and recommendations of United Nations human rights bodies such as the Human Rights Council, the treaty bodies and special procedures, and of regional human rights bodies.” In other words, the decisions and opinions of unelected, unaccountable UN bodies, made up in part of representatives from dictatorial countries, should take precedence over the decisions and actions resulting from the operation of America’s constitutional system of self-government.
Our Founding Fathers declared independence so Americans would no longer be subjected “to a jurisdiction foreign to our constitution.”
The United Nations Charter itself declares: “Nothing contained in the present Charter shall authorize the United Nations to intervene in matters which are essentially within the domestic jurisdiction of any state.”
The United Nations and its dysfunctional Human Rights Council, which counts some of the world’s worst human rights abusers as its members, should butt out of the domestic affairs of the oldest continuously functioning constitutional democracy in the world.