Sunday, March 18, 2007

UN Mandate for Women's Rights No More than a Sovereignty Grab

Another harmless UN initiative (hack hack) is the United Nations Treaty on the Convention of the Elimination of All Forms of Discrimination Against Women (AKA as CEDAW for those of us who hate to type mile long titles). In light of some barbaric forms of misogny such as female circumcision, there are people who would welcome this with open arms. A breath of fresh air, the end has come to the long history of mistreatment of women in some cultures, etc etc etc. It sounds wonderful, on the face of it, until you get down to what it actually says and does...

First of all, this is not social enlightenment. The cultures which condone female circumcision did not wake up one day from their collective funk and say, HEY, you know, as a nation we've been seriously mistreating our women, and we need to stop now. Geez we're really sorry guys, but it ain't happening again... No, that didnt happen. Same thing goes for the power hungry people who insist upon suppressing another ethnic group by hacking off women's breasts. They didn't have a conversion experience and do any form of penance or come forward with pleas for forgiveness. No, nothing even close has happened.

What did happen was a treaty. In other words, people didn't change...OTHER PEOPLE have taken it upon themselves to make them behave more humanely against their will. And they have done so by creating a treaty, which usurps the law of the land in any nation which signs on to it.

Nations which believe they aren't mistreating their women would be hard pressed to explain why they didnt sign on, as it would not have any affect on them would it? Think again. Women's rights, according to the UN, touch many many areas, not just the protection of breasts and other tender parts or the cessation of female slavery or the arrival of the right to vote. Women's rights are part and parcel to family law, parental rights, religious practice, abortion regulation, quotas for various things such as education or hiring...some of the most heatedly discussed social issues of our time.

If a soveriegn nation state signed on to this treaty, it would hand over the right to decide the way to handle these issues within the existing framework of a nation's heritage, societal structure, beliefs or religion. These issues, if not consistent with U N beliefs, would be decided by the New World Order.

While most treaties tend not to interfere with the internal workings of the nations which sign it, CEDAW interferes in a big way. CEDAW forbids us to recognize - or celebrate - that men and women are fundamentally different. The treaty defines "discrimination" as:

Any distinction, exclusion or restriction made on the basis of sex … in the political, economic, social, cultural, civil or any other field.

This goes far beyond protecting women from rape, abuse, torture and the like. It dictates how families, individuals, religions and subcultures behave. Believing that a Christian nation would protect it's citisens is not enough, because a traditionally Christian framework goes completely against CEDAW. 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.

CEDAW, in Article 5a, requires countries to:

Modify the social and cultural patterns of conduct of men and women, with a view to achieving the elimination of prejudices … based on … stereotyped roles for men and women.

This goes beyond equal pay for equal work, this goes into the ridiculous. While the people on the comittee for enforcement include China which aborts more baby girls than any nation on earth and other countries which traffic underaged females in the sex trade, nations which revere women as homemakers and mothers seem to be under the gun with CEDAW.

Here are examples of the way CEDAW has been applied. The committee rulings have...

Told China to decriminalize prostitution (an act which makes women sex objects and victims of sexual violence...and inherently demeans women)

Criticized Mexico for a "lack of access … to easy and swift abortion (which of course kills as many baby girls as it does baby boys)

Criticized Ireland for the Catholic Church's influence of attitudes and state policy (which is the right of the sovereign nation of Ireland to decide)

Told Libya to re-interpret the Koran in the light of CEDAW (Um since when does the state tell the people of faith how to interpret their holy materials?)

Derided Slovenia for having only 30 percent of children under age three in formal daycare (which must mean that children are better off raised by strangers so they can be brainwashed rather than lovingly taught by dedicated stay at home parents)

Reprimanded Belarus for celebrating Mother's Day (One would think a day honouring the most important job a woman could ever hold would be a good thing)

Told Armenia to "combat the traditional stereotype of women in the noble role of mother" (which is probably the most blatant attempt to marginalise women and usurp the social order and culture of a sovereign nation all in one fell swoop I've seen this week)

Criticized Croatia for "the refusal, by some hospitals, to provide abortions on the basis of conscientious objection of doctors. The Committee considers this to be an infringement of women's reproductive rights. (and I suppose the right to free exercise of religion by the doctors, some of them most likely female, do not count)

Told Mexico it "would welcome a more equitable redistribution of wealth among the population."(Yeah, tyrannies tend to like that, and end the end the government ends up with all the wealth, which in this cause would be the UN)

Told Italy to " sensitize judges, lawyers and law enforcement personnel … to Italy's international obligations, in particular those outlined in the Convention." (Telling a sovereign state how to conduct it's business, even in light of a treaty, is a power grab pure and simple. If Italy wants to belong to this treaty, it's for Italy to decide how to comply)

Urged Belarus to reduce "protective standards which often have a discriminatory effect on women in general and pregnant women in particular. " (Yeah, it really protects the rights of women to force the governments to force women to lift and work more than they are able when they are pregnant. And the sky is below my feet too.)

Told Kyrgyzstan "that lesbianism be reconceptualized as a sexual orientation." (And heterosexuality and motherhood and pregnancy obviously don't need protection, right? I see)

Based on the above, I see nothing protecting women, only the UN attempting to create a new world order based on an outmoded communist ideal through the use of a treaty which plays on our sensitivities because we've seen endless news reports of breastless, circumcised women who have been raped and brutalised in horrendous ways and "there really outta be a law" to prevent such things. Our global sense of outrage has been used to dupe the Nations of the world to sign onto this treaty so that global and social planners can rid the world of the beautiful diversity of some of our oldest cultures. I'm sorry that just doesn't fly with this girl.

Lady Raven

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