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More Human than Human — Righter than Right

April 6, 2006

It shouldn’t come as a surprise that after voting against the creation of the new UN Human Rights Council, the United States will not be seeking a seat on said council.

There are whispers that the reason for not seeking a seat is concern that— in light of our recent conduct with regard to detainee abuse, the farcical “due process” being carried out at Guantanamo, the renditioning of prisoners to countries where they are tortured, et cetera —we might not be able to muster the absolute majority vote among the 191 UN countries required to earn membership.

Could we at least get an anonymous US official to pay a little lip service to the council?

“It’s a question more of tactics than principle. The principle is we want to support an effective human rights council. That doesn’t mean we have to run for a seat on it,” one senior U.S. official told Reuters on condition of anonymity because a formal announcement is expected later in the day.

He added that the United States believes many good candidates have already put their names forward for the May 9 election and “we’ll probably run for a seat later on.”

“This decision is not a reflection on our willingness or unwillingness to work with the council but how we can we best play a positive role,” he said. [Reuters: US said not seeking UN Rights Council seat]

Whatever, dude.

Look, we’ve all heard the argument against the
UN. Essentially, that we must not subvert our laws and constitution to international law or corrupt international bodies, and that our subjects not be subjected to the same. (They should be subject only to our own corrupt federal government.) This is why we do not take part in the ICC. And this is why it makes sense that our leaders— especially this current bunch —want no part of some Human Rights Council. (Anonymous statements by US officials notwithstanding.)

  1. Detainee abuse, denial of due process, kidnapping renditioning, torture, et cetera, are all likely to be subject to any body concerned with human rights.
  2. We engage in detainee abuse, denial of due process, kidnapping renditioning, torture, et cetera.
  3. The Executive perceives the authority to engage in detainee abuse, denial of due process, kidnapping renditioning, torture, et cetera in our laws and constitution.
  4. Our laws and constitution must not be subverted to international law.
  5. We want no part of this Human Rights Council.

See how that works?

If Your Montag could just reiterate once more a dissent I’ve expressed many times in the past here at the Stump: Certain truths are self evident and among those are that all people are created equal and possess certain unalienable Rights. (That’s Rights with a capital ‘R’; and ‘all people’ doesn’t mean ‘Americans only.’)

America should have an unimpeachable human rights record, and should participate in, and lend legitimacy to, any body that strives to ensure the rights of all people in the world we strive to dominate.

Quite frankly it saddens me— and scares me more than a little —that we are not in such a position now.

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