Arizona vs. the U.N. human rights police

By Michelle Malkin  •  September 1, 2010 09:07 AM

Arizona vs. the U.N. human rights police
by Michelle Malkin
Creators Syndicate
Copyright 2010

An indignant President Obama complained last week, “I can’t spend all of my time with my birth certificate plastered on my forehead.” Fine. How about plastering a copy of his presidential oath of officethere instead? The kowtowing commander-in-chief is in dire need of adaily reminder that his job is to “preserve, protect and defend theConstitution of the United States” — not international law or globaldiktats.

Case in point: Last week, Obama’s State Department handed inAmerica’s first-ever report to the United Nations Commissioner for HumanRights in conjunction with something called the “Universal PeriodicReview.” In short, the 29-page document(pdf) is a self-aggrandizing report card touting the administration’sfar-left domestic and foreign policy initiatives for the world’sapproval. The report boasts of racial- and gender-bean-counting in theexecutive branch; Justice Department outreach to Muslim grievance groupsopposed to post-9/11 security measures; teachers’ union payoffs in thefederal stimulus law; continuing commitment to closing the Gitmodetention facility for enemy combatants; and the illusory lifesavingeffects of Obamacare on minorities through “expanding community healthcenters” (which have yet to be built, but not that it matters in ourNobel Peace Prize-winning president’s age of post-achievement).

The report also includes a section on “values and immigration,” whichessentially singles out Arizona’s immigration enforcement law as ahuman rights deficiency “that is being addressed in a court action.”

In response, Arizona Gov. Jan Brewer rightly blasted Secretary ofState Hillary Clinton and the Obama administration for succumbing to “internationalism run amok.”Brewer pointed out in a letter to Clinton, “Human rights as guaranteedby the United States and Arizona Constitutions are expressly protectedin S.B. 1070 and defended vigorously by my Administration. In fact, theDepartment of Justice has correctly not included these so-called ‘humanrights’ issues in the current litigation against the State of Arizona.”Somehow, that inconvenient detail escaped the Foggy Bottom bureaucrats’notice.

No one should be surprised, of course, that the Department of Blame America Firstis prostrating itself before the likes of repressive U.N. Human RightsCouncil members Libya, Cuba, Saudi Arabia and China. No one should besurprised that Obama’s globalist panderers couldn’t simply keep theirmouths shut and refrain from trashing Americans with whom they disagree.In May, you’ll recall, Assistant Secretary of State for the Bureau ofDemocracy, Human Rights and Labor Michael Posner preemptively trashed our country’s human rights recordto Chinese government officials and humiliated Arizonans — and allAmericans — who support states’ rights to protect their borders andenhance their security through strict immigration enforcement. Anobsequious Posner called S.B. 1070 “a troubling trend in our society” inhis bow-and-scrape conversations with the ChiComs.

The inclusion of Arizona in a politically correct catalogue of humanrights and wrongs is more than “downright offensive,” as Brewer put it.It’s a national travesty. In the very same Obama administrationdocument, the State Department praises the administration for its“robust protections for freedom of expression.” The report notessanctimoniously: “As a general matter, the government does not punish orpenalize those who peacefully express their views in the public sphere,even when those views are critical of the government. Indeed, dissentis a valuable and valued part of our politics.”

Yeah? Tell that to the Democratic members of Congress leading the punitive economic boycott and political demonization of Arizona. Or to Attorney General Eric Holder,who rushed to attack S.B. 1070 before he had even read it. Fresh offthis U.N. mess, Holder’s Social Justice Department has launched yetanother vendetta against Arizona. On Monday, DOJ filed suit against Phoenix-area community colleges because they imposed strict citizenship screening of potential employees.

As Obama throws America under the bus for the cause of open borders,the shady U.N. human rights police must be laughing their jackboots off.

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Related via The Foundry:

Unfortunately, the Administration fell victim to thetemptation to aggrandize its record and disparage its opponents inseveral parts of the report. For instance, President Obama is referredto over 20 times in the 25-page report (minus appendices), and hishealth care reform is credited with vast achievements that have yet tobe realized, if they ever will. The Administration deserves to becriticized for using politically what is supposed to be an objectivereport on the U.S. human rights record.

But, as discussed in a recent Heritage paper, the larger problem isn’t what is in the report; it is why we are participating in this farcein the first place. The Bush Administration rightly distanced the U.S.from the HRC and withheld the U.S. share of funding from it. WhenPresident Obama decided to support and engage the council, he extendedAmerica’s credibility to a fatally flawed body. He also made itinevitable that the U.S. would participate in the dog-and-pony UPR showthat it has proven to be—a process little more than a “mutual praisesociety” for repressive regimes.

The Obama Administration was mistaken to believe it could improve theHRC from within as a member of the council. This is the inevitableresult of its naïve faith—in defiance of record and reality—inmultilateral institutions.