Published By The Black Commentator
February 14, 2008
On February 21 and 22, U.S. State Department and Department of Justice are going to
Specifically, the United Nations Committee on the Elimination of Racial Discrimination will take a look at United States compliance - or rather, noncompliance - with the International Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Racial Discrimination, also known as the Race Convention or ICERD.
The Race Convention defines racial discrimination as “any distinction, exclusion, restriction or preference based on race, colour, descent, or national or ethnic origin which has the purpose or effect of nullifying or impairing the recognition, enjoyment or exercise, on an equal footing, of human rights and fundamental freedoms in the political, economic, social, cultural or any other field of public life.” Notice the emphasis on purpose or effect.
Ratified by the
In a recent Color of Law commentary, I discussed a shadow report by the over 250-member US Human Rights Network (USHRN), which claims that America is failing to comply with its obligations under the Race Convention. The shadow report was a response to an April 2007 report submitted by the
“Our analysis reveals that the Bush Administration is utterly out of touch with the reality of racial discrimination in
So, exactly how will the Bush administration defend their atrocious record on racial discrimination?
Will they say that the victims of Hurricane Katrina were already poor and had nothing to lose, and that Brownie did a heck of a job?
Will Bush’s yes men and women sugarcoat the problem of race-based police brutality and pretend it doesn’t exist?
What of the school-to-prison pipeline that criminalizes youth, and condemns poor children and children of color to underperforming schools, few opportunities and a life behind bars? Certainly, the Bush regime will claim that these children need to buckle down, pull themselves up by their bootstraps, study hard and play by the rules.
Blacks and Latinos make up 60 percent of the 2.5 million Americans behind bars in the
What of the continued colonialism and racial oppression experienced by
And what about the post-9/11 epidemic of hate crimes against Muslims, Arabs and South Asians, perpetrated by law enforcement agencies in the form of round-ups, interrogations and registration programs? “These people are Islamofascist terrorists who hate us for our freedom,” the government will likely say.
So, how do you defend the indefensible? The Bush administration pretends the problem doesn’t exist, and tells the victim to stop playing the victim and show some personal responsibility. On the issue of human rights, this administration never fails to disappoint.