The championing of human rights, at least in the world arena. From Anne Bayefsky, Obama Joins Human-Rights Charade

Pres. Barack Obama has announced that the United States will seek a seat on the U.N. Human Rights Council for the first time. The formal election of new members is in May, but the result is a foregone conclusion. The human-rights abusers who dominate the Council and use it to protect themselves, to eliminate universal standards, and to demonize their democratic foes are already celebrating.

This is a surrender of American values unlike any other. The spectacle of this particular president legitimizing a lethal weapon for the defeat of human rights will haunt him until the end of his term.

US tax dollars will go to the Human Rights Council.  What are they buying?  Some past Council actions:

The Council has adopted a formal agenda of ten items that governs all its meetings. One agenda item is reserved for condemning Israel. This item is called the “human-rights situation in Palestine and other occupied Arab territories”; the human rights of Israelis are deliberately omitted. And one agenda item is assigned to the human rights of the remaining 99.9 percent of the world’s population. By taking a seat on the Council, the United States will be agreeing to this agenda and to the resulting apportionment of the Council’s time.

The last time the Council took action on Sudan was seven months ago. The resolution on that country “acknowledges . . . the steps taken by the Government of the Sudan to strengthen the human-rights legal and institutional framework, principally in law reform.” (The Sudanese criminal code prohibits homosexuality, makes adultery a capital offense, and provides for flogging, amputation, stoning, and crucifixion.)

The Council has just terminated every investigation of “consistent patterns of gross and reliably attested violations of all human rights and all fundamental freedoms.” Under this heading, it has discontinued investigations of the likes of Iran, Kyrgyzstan, Maldives, Turkmenistan, and Uzbekistan. Even the discredited U.N. Human Rights Commission had investigations under way every year since this process began in 1974.

The Council president has made a procedural ruling that any commentary connecting the practice of Islam to human-rights violations is out of order.

Ms. Bayefsky warns the President of the likely political consequences of involving America in this travesty:

President Obama’s decision to bring the United States into the Council is a gift for his political adversaries. The Council and its many subsidiary bodies meet almost year round, and many of their proceedings are webcast. Every time the president makes a speech about human dignity, the welfare of minorities, the equality of women, or an end to torture, his critics can circulate another picture of the hapless American representative to the Council glued to his chair during the adoption of yet another decision trashing human rights — with the United States paying the bill.

Human-rights victims will rue the day that the United States legitimized this morally bankrupt institution. President Obama will, too.

Much more at the link.

I hope his critics are listening.  But whether or not this is a political loser for him, anyone who values individual freedom has already lost.

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