Blog of Rights

Aadika
Singh

Hope in Hope: Domestic Implementation of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights

By Aadika Singh, Human Rights Program & Aadika Singh, Human Rights Program at 6:04pm

The message of hope that President-Elect Obama and his team offer is intoxicating. The election that enabled its acceptance as a common mantra was undoubtedly historic. Even the Economist lauded the enduring ability of the American political machines and the American public to 'surprise' the international community. It's a new era, a new world, we'd like to believe. We've waited so long and now everything will be different—better.

Sadly, that's probably not going to be the case, as a group of 80-odd attendees heard at an ACLU panel and film screening last night at the Church Center for the United Nations. The panel, co-sponsored by the Center for Constitutional Rights, the U.S. Human Rights Network, the Opportunity Agenda, the New York Civil Liberties Union, the Columbia Law School Human Rights Institute, and Witness focused on the challenges of domestically implementing the Universal Declaration of Human Rights (UDHR). Held on the 60th anniversary of the adoption of the UDHR, the ACLU-led event featured panelists from the Center for Reproductive Rights, the Rights Working Group, the NAACP, the Sex Workers Project at the Urban Justice Center and the Committee on International Human Rights of the Association of the Bar of the City of New York.

While many celebrated and commemorated the UDHR's birthday, Craig Mokhiber, Deputy Director of the New York Office for the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights, reminded the Church Center audience that we, in the United States and internationally, remain "in a period of crisis." All 192 member states in the United Nations system are home to egregious human rights abuses. Mokhiber, speaking in an unofficial capacity, discussed how the past successes of the U.S. human rights movement have been eroded over the course of the last eight years. The American public has been asked to defer their human rights in the name of security and counterterrorism efforts, border protection policies, and the unencumbered operation of the free market.

Hope in Hope: Domestic Implementation of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights

By Aadika Singh, Human Rights Program & Aadika Singh, Human Rights Program at 6:04pm

The message of hope that President-Elect Obama and his team offer is intoxicating. The election that enabled its acceptance as a common mantra was undoubtedly historic. Even the Economist lauded the enduring ability of the American political machines and the American public to 'surprise' the international community. It's a new era, a new world, we'd like to believe. We've waited so long and now everything will be different—better.

Sadly, that's probably not going to be the case, as a group of 80-odd attendees heard at an ACLU panel and film screening last night at the Church Center for the United Nations. The panel, co-sponsored by the Center for Constitutional Rights, the U.S. Human Rights Network, the Opportunity Agenda, the New York Civil Liberties Union, the Columbia Law School Human Rights Institute, and Witness focused on the challenges of domestically implementing the Universal Declaration of Human Rights (UDHR). Held on the 60th anniversary of the adoption of the UDHR, the ACLU-led event featured panelists from the Center for Reproductive Rights, the Rights Working Group, the NAACP, the Sex Workers Project at the Urban Justice Center and the Committee on International Human Rights of the Association of the Bar of the City of New York.

While many celebrated and commemorated the UDHR's birthday, Craig Mokhiber, Deputy Director of the New York Office for the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights, reminded the Church Center audience that we, in the United States and internationally, remain "in a period of crisis." All 192 member states in the United Nations system are home to egregious human rights abuses. Mokhiber, speaking in an unofficial capacity, discussed how the past successes of the U.S. human rights movement have been eroded over the course of the last eight years. The American public has been asked to defer their human rights in the name of security and counterterrorism efforts, border protection policies, and the unencumbered operation of the free market.

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