Quitting the Human Rights Council is a Big Deal

Quitting the Human Rights Council is a Big Deal

This is just one of many moves to put the U.S. in global isolation.

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The UN Human Rights Council (UNHRC) is a subdivision of the United Nations that is dedicated to furthering the cause of human rights around the world. This is the body that is responsible for opening investigations into the suppression of human rights in all countries. Investigations are in accordance with the Universal Declaration of Human Rights. This document includes thirty articles which lay out rights of a variety of types, including constitutional, economic, and social.

All of this sounds fairly fundamental and in accordance with the spirit of the founding of our country. However, just today, Nikki Haley, the American ambassador to the UN, announced intentions of withdrawing from the UNHRC. Her reasoning? Haley named hypocrisy and bias against the state of Israel.

Withdrawing from the UNHRC comes right on the tail of President Trump's historic summit with North Korean leader Kim Jong Un. Trump's relationships with countries that are not American allies have blossomed; the same cannot be said for relationships with our allies. According to the Washington Post, Trump has imposed more tariffs on our allies than have been imposed upon the country of China. A pattern is beginning to develop. The United States has begun to alienate our allies in favor of relationships with countries that are not our allies and do not uphold the same ideals that the United States was founded on. The withdrawal from the UNHRC only further solidifies this.

However, the withdrawal is somewhat fitting. Recent headlines have been dominated by stories covering the treatment of children of illegal aliens that have crossed our border. Currently, due to the strict immigration policy, children of immigrants are being separated from their parents and held in detention centers. These centers have children being held in caged rooms, with foil blankets, and in some cases, no interpreter. Zeid Ra'ad al Hussein, the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights, has decried American immigration policies, describing the separation of these children as "unconscionable." Thus, the withdrawal of America from the UNHRC goes hand-in-hand with the immoral and unethical treatment of these children.

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The United States' membership on the UNHRC served as a powerful tool for foreign diplomacy. When a nation is involved within a specific council, this gives them an active position to advocate for policies that are in the interest of their nation. Withdrawing from the council will cause all roles that the United States plays with the UNHRC to be passive, making it far less likely for them to be in alignment with the US's interests.

There is very little that the US stands to gain from this move. The United States' decision to leave the UNHRC makes it the first country ever to leave the council of its own accord. The thought behind this is to invalidate the UN. Donald Trump is no fan of the UN, saying in the past that the body is "not a friend of democracy." Leaving the UNHRC only stands to set back the global fight for human rights.

As tenuous as the global human rights movement is, a superpower like the United States withdrawing from the UNHRC is more than a drop in the bucket for such advocacy.

Contact your representative here to communicate that you support human rights and membership in the UNHRC.

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Children Should Not Be Separated from Their Parents

My take on a human rights problem in my country.

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"No!" the little girl cried.

Children are crowded into a fenced off area, away from their parents as parents are taken away from their children.

Will these parents ever see their kids again? Why is this happening?

The law in question has been around since Clinton, but Trump is the one who enforced it.

I shall appeal to two higher laws- the Constitution and the law of nature.


"The enumertion in the Constitution, of certain rights, shall not be construed to deny or disparage others retained by the people." - Amendment IX

Most of the Constitution specifies "citizens," but the wording here is different "people" which means anybody residing within the borders of this country. The Constitution does not grant us rights, the rights come from nature. The Constitution proclaims the rights that live within us all, and Amendment IX specifies there are rights that the Constitution doesn't declare that are still important to survival.

Young children are rapidly growing and developing. Separating them from their families has lifelong and detrimental effects on them. For example, it could ruin their sense of trust for life if they are 1. If they are 2 they may stifle autonomy and become ashamed of all they do according to Erikson's Stages of Development.

A child who is given inconsistent care or loses many people close to them may grow very ambivalent and clingy for more attention. A neglected child may become avoidant and refuse all relationships.

There are hundreds of more damaging effects this may have on kids, from both a Constitutional and a psychological standpoint this is wrong.

Now from a Biblical standpoint.

It has come to my knowledge that Romans 13 was used to uphold an unjust law- but let me give some brief context of this law.

- Rome was very unstable.

- Paul was frustrated and reminding the people that the church's main purpose was the gospel.

I believe that rights come from God. When a government takes away these rights, they violate the unspoken contract between the people and the government. The people have a moral duty to speak out against the government because the government is accountable to the people and is made up of ordinary people.

Divine right is completely unbiblical and wrong (see my article critiquing absolute monarchy) and paved a way for despots to do atrocious crimes against humanity while misusing the name of God.

Let's see what the Bible has to say about immigrants and refugees.

Leviticus 19:33-34 New International Version (NIV)

33 "'When a foreigner resides among you in your land, do not mistreat them. 34 The foreigner residing among you must be treated as your native-born. Love them as yourself, for you were foreigners in Egypt. I am the Lord your God.


This Bible verse is imploring us to defend and care for the immigrants and those who are different. We are to show them the love of God.

Now for another Bible verse:

Deuteronomy 10:18-19 New International Version (NIV)

18 He defends the cause of the fatherless and the widow, and loves the foreigner residing among you, giving them food and clothing. 19 And you are to love those who are foreigners, for you yourselves were foreigners in Egypt.

God loves the needy and will look after them but we must do our part and show them love as well.

On another note, you never know what you would learn from somebody a little different from yourself. Different cultures will open your eyes to new ideas and new stories.

Think of how much stronger this world would be if instead of separating families and showing hatred- we showed a simple act of love. Also, if I remember right the Fifth Amendment of the US Constitution says that we should unjustly detain somebody without trial by jury. Is this unjust detainment? Yes.

They may have been entering illegally, but keep this in mind- they are fleeing. They are fleeing violence and hatred, only to come to a nation who has turned its back on everybody who is different.

We need to pick up the moral banner of doing good for all of humanity. We can take a first step by reuniting these young ones with their families. Allow these children to grow, dream, and develop. Allow them to read and be comforted by their parents.

You never know what a little child may do someday, help them to grow and learn. Do not rip them out of their parents arms and stifle their growth.

Allow them to have a positive image of this country's people, and learn all that they can.

This act of love- keeping children with their families will change the world for the better in generations to come.

Let's speak out against this injustice, and speak up for these children.

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Introducing Miah Johnson

"It made me learn to love and live in every moment as if it were the last." -Miah Johnson

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It was Daddy Donut day at Teasley Elementary School, but for Miah Johnson, it was just another day in which she had to pretend everything was okay. It had been a month since Miah's dad was deported and left her hopeless.

As Johnson took her last sip of coffee she laughs. She shares how hard it was for her to talk about her father. Many people do not know about the days she spent crying because she needed him, or how she was not sure if they would ever move past the hard times. How she went days without being able to eat a proper meal because they did not have enough money to make ends meet. Ashamed and embarrassed she shares her memories of going to church early in the morning for bread, canned soup, and powdered milk. She explains that there are times when she gets excited to share something with her father but strange darkness takes over and she loses hope that one day a real relationship with him will exist.

Johnson was born in Fort Lauderdale Florida in 1999. She is the only child of her small sheltered loving family. Her childhood was a fairy tale, her best friend was her stepfather, "I wasn't his biological daughter, but he raised me as one and I will always be grateful for the memories." Johnson's eyes flood with tears as she reminiscences on her past. School work was the best way she coped with her loss. She always made herself busy, if she didn't have any homework she would read, pick up a new hobby or dance. Going to bed was the hardest part of her day. All of the thoughts and feelings she fought so hard to keep away came pouring out in a way she does not know how to describe. Not having her father broke her in many ways, but the one she speaks about most often is not having a financially and emotionally stable home.

Johnson attended Elon University on a full ride her freshman year but decided to transfer to a school closer to home. Johnson was not ready to leave she admitted quietly. She describes that there was a shift in her during her first semester there, for the first time she failed classes, gained 20 pounds and lost her scholarship. Her failure comes from a lack of stability and support. The friendships she made there weren't enough to keep her there, she could no longer afford the prestigious college. Now she takes classes online at Kennesaw State University. She has to work two jobs in order to make ends meet for her and her family. Johnson laughs at the situation and explains how her father used to lecture her on how education is the best way out of their situation. Now she feels like she has disappointed him and that she has to make up for the broken promise.

There is never enough money. Johnson has made plans to visit her father multiple times but has never been able to visit him. There is always something that comes up. Her mother's car broken down the first time, they couldn't afford to pay the bills the other time, and the last time she needed a car of her own to help get to and from work. She shows a screenshot of her bank account. Negative eight dollars. She sighs and states that life has a funny way of getting in the way of the important things.

Johnson believes that if her father was still here, it would be different. She would have never known what it was like to go hungry, feel so hopeless, and do not have a stable home.

She explains that it was an experience she doesn't share because it is painful to talk about but, "It made me learn to love and live in every moment as if it were the last."

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