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Archive for April 21st, 2008

UDHR under Attack Part 1

Posted by Henric C. Jensen on April 21, 2008

International Humanist and Ethical Union carried an article on March 30, 2008.

Eleanor Roosevelt with the Universal Declaration of Human Rights

“With the support of their allies including China, Russia and Cuba (none well-known for their defence of human rights) the Islamic States succeeded in forcing through an amendment to a resolution on Freedom of Expression that has turned the entire concept on its head. The UN Special Rapporteur on Freedom of Expression will now be required to report on the “abuse” of this most cherished freedom by anyone who, for example, dares speak out against Sharia laws that require women to be stoned to death for adultery or young men to be hanged for being gay, or against the marriage of girls as young as nine, as in Iran.”

The entire idea is silly, because Religious Freedom and Protection of honor and reputation is already guaranteed by the UDHR (articles 12 and 19), so it seems the OIC is somehow overshooting.

Former UN Secretary General Kofi Annan saw the writing on the wall three years ago when he spoke of the old Commission on Human Rights having “become too selective and too political in its work”. Piecemeal reform would not be enough. The old system needed to be swept away and replaced by something better. The Human Rights Council was supposed to be that new start, a Council whose members genuinely supported, and were prepared to defend, the principles of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights.

Yet since its inception in June 2006, the Human Rights Council has failed to condemn the most egregious examples of human rights abuse in the Sudan, Byelorussia, Iran, Saudi Arabia, China and elsewhere, whilst repeatedly condemning Israel and Israel alone.

Considering that we have 22 Arab Nations, a bunch of Islamic Nations, and Russia, Cuba, China involved as well as the usual abstentions one might be allowed some skepticism. If the old Commission didn’t work because of WHO are the members and the incessant politicking around who votes for because another votes against, one can hardly expect a Council to make much head way, if the same members are allowed to influence the work.

It’s like the debacle with the UN Resolutions – they will always be slanted against Israel, because there will always be 22 votes against her, plus the allies of those 22 votes…and the allies of those allies…

The whole idea of nations being members of UN Bodies is ridiculous, especially in Bodies that should have no political agenda at all, such as the Human Rights Council. Human Rights, Children’s Rights etc are non-political, so the people in UN who deal with those Rights should not be political either – i.e members of the Human Rights Council should not be nations and they should be separated from their Nationality when they assume their duties on the Council. They should also be required to swear that they will maintain their neutrality for the duration of their service on the Council. Any amendments to the various UN Charters and Declarations should be made by those neutral council members and not be voted on out-side the Council.

End Part 1


Posted in Human Rights, UDHR, UN | Tagged: , , , , , , | 2 Comments »

Why Usonia?

Posted by Henric C. Jensen on April 21, 2008

Usonian Flag

Does that mean all other states in North America are divided?

There is only one other state in North America – Canada. Canada, however does not aspire to occupy the two American Continents merely through its name. Canada doesn’t express an inherent imperialism by what it calls itself. So Canada doesn’t need to be distinguished from the other nations on the American Continents to negate its aspirations and its imperialism.

Is one saying that some people have no right to name their own nation?

Of course people may call their nation whatever they like, but if they chose to call it something that implies that it is a two-continent nation, they may actually have to accept that others disagree with them.

Having a problem with the term America, or Americans~ and the Amerinds probably would not respond so well that term, or the maybe even the Canadians, and when we call Europeans Europeans, French or Germans there does not seem to be a problem.

The French and Germans are part of Europe, Europe is the name of the continent, but they do not claim that all of Europe is France or Germany. There is no imperialism or negation of other Sovereign nations in their nation names, nor in the name Europe.

Of course, the European Union is made of of nations, France, Germany, Italy, etc.

The European Union is first and foremost an Economic Co-Operative, the sovereign nations that are members of it have not entered into a Federal Republic, and nor has Europe itself attempted to erase those sovereign nations, situated on the European Continent from consciousness by naming itself in a manner that implies that only one nation – “Europe”- exists on the continent.

Why this particular singling out the United States of America~ and it does say of America~ because of the narrowing of the term to ‘America’, because of the actions, sentiments, or words of a few, because of the recent incarnation of the government, or even long term policies that may have been going on, done by the government, perhaps in cahoots with some businesses?

Because “United States of America” hijacks two continentsNorth and South America, and implies that it is the only American Nation in existence, or even the only Nation on the American Continents. That’s why its being singled out. To make a point. Is it a protest against the current administration? No. Is it a protest against some businesses? No. It’s a protest against the inherent national arrogance and long-term imperialistic attitude that is reflected in the name Usonia gave itself.

“The word Usonian appears to have been coined by James Duff Law, an American writer born in 1865. In a miscellaneous collection entitled Here and There in Two Hemispheres (1903), Law quoted a letter of his own (dated 18 June 1903) that begins “We of the United States, in justice to Canadians and Mexicans, have no right to use the title ‘Americans’ when referring to matters pertaining exclusively to ourselves.” He went on to acknowledge that some author had proposed “Usona,” but that he preferred “Usonia.” Perhaps the earliest published use by Wright was in 1927.” From Wikipedia

Posted in US, World Politics | Tagged: , , , , , , | 1 Comment »

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