A cruel and unusual record

Jimmy Carter:

THE United States is abandoning its role as the global champion of human rights.

Revelations that top officials are targeting people to be assassinated abroad, including American citizens, are only the most recent, disturbing proof of how far our nation’s violation of human rights has extended. This development began after the terrorist attacks of Sept. 11, 2001, and has been sanctioned and escalated by bipartisan executive and legislative actions, without dissent from the general public. As a result, our country can no longer speak with moral authority on these critical issues.

While the country has made mistakes in the past, the widespread abuse of human rights over the last decade has been a dramatic change from the past. With leadership from the United States, the Universal Declaration of Human Rights was adopted in 1948 as “the foundation of freedom, justice and peace in the world.” This was a bold and clear commitment that power would no longer serve as a cover to oppress or injure people, and it established equal rights of all people to life, liberty, security of person, equal protection of the law and freedom from torture, arbitrary detention or forced exile.

One thought on “A cruel and unusual record

  1. The United States abandoned its role as the global champion of human rights in 1947 when it set up the CIA. Not that the US practiced human rights to any great degree after the Monroe Doctrine was passed in 1823. It was only between 1787 when Washington said that the US should stay out of everybody’s business and 1823 when Monroe ended that practice that the US actually cared about human dignity on a global scale.

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