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Jewish World Review
March 19, 2012/ 25 Adar, 5772
The U.N. Human Rights Council --- and other Jokes
I don't know why those nasty conservatives are always taking cheap shots at the United Nations. I mean, the U.N. cares about stuff, important stuff. Don't the delegates who leave the comfort of their homes in places like Zimbabwe and Bangladesh only to endure the hardships of Manhattan and Geneva do really important work?
Why yes they do. Here's just the latest example. The U.N. Human Rights Council is meeting in that aforementioned hellhole called Geneva, Switzerland taking up a matter brought to the council's attention by the NAACP. The civil rights group says that laws in the United States that require voters to show photo IDs before casting their ballots hurt poor folks in general and black folks in particular. Photo ID laws, according to the NAACP are discriminatory because they disenfranchise voters who don't have the wherewithal to get a picture ID, and, that, the argument goes, suppresses the minority vote.
I don't know about you, but that sounds like a human rights violation to me.
Want to know how bad it is? I'll tell you anyway. Eight states passed photo ID laws in just the past year and similar laws are pending in 32 more states. Talk about your crimes against humanity.
"This really is a tactic that undercuts the growth of … democracy," according to Hillary Shelton, the NAACP's senior vice president for advocacy, speaking about those photo ID requirements. Ms. Shelton told Fox News that such a burdensome requirement "undercuts the integrity of our government, if you allow it to happen. It's trickery, it's a sleight-of-hand. We're seeing it happen here … and we are utilizing the U.N. as a tool to make sure that we are able to share that with those countries all over the world."
So who's going to listen to these cries for help? Well, let's start with the delegates from Saudi Arabia, a nation that cares deeply about voting rights. Unless you're a woman. Then you're not allowed to vote.
Then there are those two beacons of light that care so very much about "the growth of democracy" China and Cuba, one-party dictatorships where it's not a good idea to criticize the government for anything, especially for trampling on the human rights of its citizens. Oh yeah, that lighthouse of enlightenment, Libya, is also a member of the Human Rights Council.
So what's going on here? That's easy. The NAACP is trying to embarrass the United States in front of the whole wide world because it's losing the argument here at home. Most Americans figure if they have to present an ID to rent a movie at the strip mall or check into a hotel … or buy a gun, which is a right granted under the Constitution, then is it really oppressive to require citizens to show a government-issued picture of themselves before voting?
But as the saying goes, reasonable people may disagree. So the NAACP may have a case.
But to take that case to delegates who represent tyrants and thugs who wouldn't recognize a human right if it kicked them in the rear end … well, that is embarrassing. Not for the United States. For a once proud civil rights organization.
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JWR contributor Bernard Goldberg, the television news reporter and author of several bestselling books, among them, Bias, a New York Times number one bestseller about how the media distort the news. He is widely seen as one of the most original writers and thinkers in broadcast journalism. Mr. Goldberg covered stories all over the world for CBS News and has won 10 Emmy awards for excellence in journalism. He now reports for the widely acclaimed HBO broadcast Real Sports.
He is a graduate of Rutgers University, New Brunswick, New Jersey and a member of the school's Hall of Distinguished Alumni and proprietor of BernardGoldberg.com.
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© 2011, Bernard Goldberg