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US Refuses to Sign UN Resolution on Gay Rights

US Refuses to Sign UN Resolution on Gay Rights December 22, 2008

The Bush administration refused to vote for a UN resolution urging nations to decriminalize homosexuality.

Alone among major Western nations, the United States has refused to sign a declaration presented Thursday at the United Nations calling for worldwide decriminalization of homosexuality.

In all, 66 of the U.N.’s 192 member countries signed the nonbinding declaration — which backers called a historic step to push the General Assembly to deal more forthrightly with any-gay discrimination. More than 70 U.N. members outlaw homosexuality, and in several of them homosexual acts can be punished by execution.


This is absolutely appalling. Backing a federal marriage amendment to ban same-sex marriage is bad enough; refusing to support not throwing gay people in prison – or worse, stoning them to death in some nations – is infinitely worse. And their arguments in defending their position are patently absurd:

According to some of the declaration’s backers, U.S. officials expressed concern in private talks that some parts of the declaration might be problematic in committing the federal government on matters that fall under state jurisdiction. In numerous states, landlords and private employers are allowed to discriminate on the basis of sexual orientation; on the federal level, gays are not allowed to serve openly in the military.

Carolyn Vadino, a spokeswoman for the U.S. mission to the U.N., stressed that the United States — despite its unwillingness to sign — condemned any human rights violations related to sexual orientation.

Incredible. One can only hope that Obama will reverse that position if and when this resolution comes up for a vote next year, as it likely will.

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