The House Subcommittee on International Organizations, Human Rights and Oversight held a hearing last week to discuss House Resolution 146 which concerns the United States’ responsibility regarding the United Nations Security Resolution 1325. The introduction to the resolution states: “Expressing the sense of the House of Representatives that the United States should take action to meet its obligations, and to ensure that all other member states of the United Nations meet their obligations, to women as agreed to in United Nations Security Council Resolution 1325 relating to women, peace, and security, and the United States should fully assume the implementation of international law relating to human rights that protects the rights of women and girls during and after conflicts, and for other purposes.”
The problem is that the United States has not agreed to the obligations of the UN Security Resolution 1325. That UN Resolution refers to numerous UN treaties. The United States has made no commitments to those treaties. For instance, we have not ratified the Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Discrimination Against Women (CEDAW) or the Convention on the Rights of the Child. We have withdrawn from the International Criminal Court.
The United States is not obligated to meet any commitments under these agreements nor do we have any of the obligations that are mentioned in H.Res.146.
It is important to note exactly WHY the United States has chosen NOT to make these commitments.
At the outset, it should be stated unequivocally that in the United States equal rights are protected under the Constitution and the Bill of Rights. The human rights provisions of the U.N. treaties are already available to citizens in the United States. We emphatically support the human rights of women and girls. The so-called “Women’s Rights” movement and “gender-mainstreaming” effort have policy implications far beyond human rights concerns. The issue in regard to the U.N. treaties is a matter of national sovereignty, a matter of quotas and a matter of the specific provisions of the various treaties that would challenge the laws and culture of the United States.
For America, there are significant problems associated with CEDAW -- the major treaty in 1325.
- CEDAW supersedes national sovereignty. The single condition that the founding fathers laid out for treaties was that they had to be constitutional. CEDAW violates that basic requirement. CEDAW could supersede all federal and state laws, as evidenced by past federal court rulings.
- CEDAW would be enforced by an oversight committee of 23 experts responsible for implementing CEDAW in every signatory nation. Thus, the welfare and well being of American women and families would be at the mercy of 23 individuals, among whom the United States might not even have a voice. Recent appointees include China, Cuba and Iraq.
- Specific Provisions of the CEDAW Treaty are troublesome:
Here are some of the problematic aspects -- The treaty could be used to justify the legalization of prostitution, instituting same-sex marriages, and undercutting parental roles in child rearing and teaching values to children. More specifically, there are five other problematic aspects of CEDAW.
1. CEDAW’s definition of "discrimination" and “equal rights” is all-encompassing and dangerous. It goes beyond trying to establish equality, which U.S. laws already afford women. The treaty language is far too vague and would invite an avalanche of frivolous lawsuits in the United States. CEDAW could be used to renew the drive for a federal ERA.
2. CEDAW undermines the traditional family structure in the United States and other nations that respect the family. The preamble states, "A change in the traditional role of men as well as the role of women in society and in the family is needed to achieve full equality between men and women."
3. CEDAW mandates gender re-education. Taxpayers could be forced to pay the high cost of "gender neutralizing" all textbooks and school programs.
4. CEDAW is a thinly veiled "comparable worth" mandate. Even though American women are prevalent in "male-dominated" professions and earn the majority of associate’s and bachelor’s degrees, as well as 40 percent of doctoral degrees and more than 40 percent of law and medical degrees.
5. Abortion is the driving force behind the CEDAW treaty. Universal access to abortion-on-demand continues to be viewed as essential for women’s equality. Feminists view pregnancy as hampering women’s careers and lessening their ability to compete equally with men. Ratification of CEDAW could easily be used to broaden the scope of abortion in the United States, just as it has and continues to be used for that purpose around the world.
The House hearing “dipped a toe into the waters” testing whether CEDAW can now be ratified. Those who advocate most vehemently for CEDAW don’t need the treaty. They already enjoy abundant materialism, opportunities and negligible inequality. Poor women in developing nations are fighting for the basic needs of everyday life — education and literacy, access to basic medicines, nutrition, etc.
CEDAW advocates in Western nations are using these women’s disadvantages to push an agenda of sexual and reproductive rights for females as young as age 10. Hiding under the guise of "human rights," and veiling their intentions with appeals for needy women in developing nations, these activists insist CEDAW is necessary.
To repeat: The United States has not agreed to the obligations of the UN Security Resolution 1325.
There are many reasons CEDAW has not been ratified and any attempt to get it in through the back door should be stopped.