Oppose Ratification of the UN Treaty on Disability Rights

By:  John F. McManus
UN buildings, New York UN buildings, New York

Contact the Senate today to oppose ratification of the UN treaty on disability rights.

[UPDATE, 12/4/12: The Senate rejected ratification of this UN treaty by a vote of 61 YEAs to 38 NAYs. A vote of two-thirds YEAs (67 votes) is required for ratification.]

[UPDATE 11/28/12: On November 27 the Senate voted 61-36 to begin consideration of the UN Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities, a treaty which requires 67 votes for ratification. A vote is likely within days.]

The United Nations already operates with an array of subsidiary organizations, conventions, commissions, and institutes that seek to govern a growing total of every area of human activity. There is, for instance, UNESCO for education, UNICEF for children, UNIFEM for Women, WHO (World Health Organization) for health, FAO (Food and Agriculture Organization) for human sustenance, etc. And these UN subdivisions we have just listed do not include UN banking institutions, military operations, trade organizations, and other branches of the ever-growing accumulation of power by the world organization.

Not satisfied with the clout it already has, the UN is now seeking ratification of a “Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities” (CRPD). Adopted by the UN in December 2006, President Obama instructed U.S. Ambassador Susan Rice to sign it on July 29, 2009. Obama now wants the Senate to ratify it.

Labeled another “piece of global mischief” by veteran UN scrutinizer Phyllis Schlafly, the CRPD, which is actually a treaty that would require two-thirds approval by the Senate, has already been ratified by 117 of the 193 UN nations. She considers as “bizarre” any assertion that “the UN can provide more benefits or protections for persons with disabilities than the U.S.”

Do our country and its handicapped citizens need the UN to tell us how to treat persons with disabilities? We already have the Americans with Disabilities Act and a handful of other laws dealing with this segment of the population, even a 1984 law known as the Voting Accessibility for the Elderly and Handicapped Act. The answer is no; we don’t need the UN for this purpose.

But the goal of this additional intrusion into our nation’s affairs isn’t as much about addressing the difficulties of persons with handicaps as it’s about the UN gaining supremacy over the laws and legal processes of our country and others. CRPD would require all participating countries to submit reports to a “committee of experts.” It seeks to grant governments and the UN itself authority to decide, for instance, whether parents of a disabled child are complying with the measure’s broad requirements. Its loose definitions leave open intrusion into an array of areas that are currently being addressed by nations that already have humane laws and practices.

Additionally, by requiring nations to provide the handicapped with “affordable healthcare” that includes abortion, CRPD has delighted feminists and earned the backing of the pro-abortion lobby. A pertinent phrase appearing in the CRPD calls for guarantees that the handicapped and disabled will be assured “reproductive health,” something defined by Secretary of State Hillary Clinton when she told a congressional panel that “reproductive health includes access to abortion.” Mrs. Schlafly also sees a potential for CRPD to threaten homeschooling families, especially any with children who are handicapped or disabled. The UN’s “committee of experts” would decide whether a family is acting responsibly.

CRPD is a 25-page document whose Preamble begins by haughtily “recognizing” that the combination of the UN’s Universal Declaration of Human Rights and the UN’s International Covenants on Human Rights guarantees that “everyone is entitled to all of the rights and freedoms set forth therein.” But those rights can be easily abolished according to these very documents. Article 29 of the Universal Declaration states this very clearly: “These rights and freedoms may in no case be exercised contrary to the purposes and principles of the United Nations.” In other words, there are plenty of rights that should be enjoyed by everyone but if we (the UN) find them objectionable, they don’t exist.

As can be seen in the UN’s official documents and in the conduct of the UN since 1945, the world body is constantly accumulating power. It has already gained much and CRPD is another step toward total power.

Senator John Kerry (D-Mass.), a powerful member of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, has indicated a desire to have the Senate vote on ratification of CRPD. Contact each of your senators and ask them to vote NO should the measure be brought up. But don’t stop there. Ask each senator and congressman to back legislation to Get US out! of the United Nations.

(The above article was first published as "Beware Another UN Power Grab" by John F. McManus in the October 2012 JBS Bulletin and is reposted here with permission.)

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