Yesterday, the United States took a principled, firm and courageous stand for women and against political correctness by “disassociating” the United States from consensus on the resolution supporting the Convention on the Elimination of all Forms of Discrimination Against Women (CEDAW). This action put the United States on the record as disagreeing with the resolution. The accompanying statement made it clear that the United States is fully committed to promoting the rights and freedoms of women and that those principles are an integral part of our nation’s foreign policy. The statement illustrated the American commitment to women by citing our efforts in Afghanistan and it expressed concern about both the text of the CEDAW treaty and the record of its implementation in countries that have ratified the treaty. The U.S. statement also expressed concern about the U.N. presenting the resolution as a demand it was sent to countries to “ratify” rather than being sent to them to “consider ratifying.”
This step is significant forward progress in letting the world know that the United States will not be bullied into taking steps that will ultimately be harmful to its citizens and its sovereignty. Advocates for the treaty have positioned the treaty as a “women’s rights” issue when, in fact, the treaty would be detrimental to women. Advocates have depicted the treaty as an innocuous rallying call for nation’s to unite on women’s issues when, in fact, the treaty would enable an implementation committee to dictate policy to the United States, thus surrendering our national sovereignty to 23 women appointed by the United Nations from non-democratic countries whose record on human rights is abysmal.
“The Beverly LaHaye Institute applauds yesterday’s action by the White House and considers it affirmation of America’s willingness to stand up for women when ‘wolves in sheep’s clothing’ from around the world are seeking to devour us under the guise of ‘women’s rights.’
As American women we are privileged to live in a land of freedom at a time of unprecedented opportunities for women. And, we are savvy enough to know that we have to look ‘gift horses in the mouth.’ CEDAW is a stalking horse that will ultimately destroy women’s freedom and well being. Thank you, Bush Administration, for doing the right thing for women!”
Janice Shaw Crouse, Ph.D.
Senior Fellow, The Beverly LaHaye Institute
Here is the White House announcement:
On October 24, 2002, the United Nations General Assembly’s Third Committee (Humanitarian, Social and Cultural) passed by consensus [which means that it approved without a vote] a draft resolution supporting the Convention on the Elimination of all Forms of Discrimination Against Women (CEDAW). The effect of the action is to forward the resolution to the United Nations General Assembly for consideration. The United States “disassociated” itself from this consensus, thus signaling our disagreement with the resolution. In so doing, the United States entered the following statement into the record:
“The United States is committed to ensuring that promotion of the Human Rights and Fundamental Freedoms of Women is fully integrated into American Foreign Policy. Our actions in Afghanistan underscore this commitment to promote the Rights of Girls and Women who suffered under the Draconian Taliban rule, including in education, employment, healthcare, and other areas. It is for these and other reasons that the United States supports CEDAW’s general goal of eradicating invidious discrimination against women across the globe. We note that the question of ratification of CEDAW is being examined by the United States. However, the text of CEDAW and the record of the CEDAW Committee raise a number of concerns that the United States is currently reviewing. Moreover, we are concerned about language in the resolution that calls on states to ‘ratify’ CEDAW, rather than to ‘consider ratifying’ CEDAW. Accordingly, the United States disassociates itself from consensus on this resolution. I would like to request that the text of this statement be entered into the record.”