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Ron!n
03-18-2009, 05:30 PM
Sources: U.S. to sign U.N. gay rights declaration
Former President Bush had refused to endorse the measure in December

WASHINGTON - The Obama administration will endorse a U.N. declaration calling for the worldwide decriminalization of homosexuality that then-President George W. Bush had refused to sign, The Associated Press has learned.

U.S. officials said Tuesday they had notified the declaration's French sponsors that the administration wants to be added as a supporter. The Bush administration was criticized in December when it was the only western government that refused to sign on.

The move was made after an interagency review of the Bush administration's position on the nonbinding document, which was signed by all 27 European Union members as well as Japan, Australia, Mexico and three dozen other countries, the officials said.
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The officials spoke on condition of anonymity because Congress was still being notified of the decision. They said the administration had decided to sign the declaration to demonstrate that the United States supports human rights for all.

"The United States is an outspoken defender of human rights and critic of human rights abuses around the world," said one official.

"As such, we join with the other supporters of this statement and we will continue to remind countries of the importance of respecting the human rights of all people in all appropriate international fora," the official said.

'Integral part of human freedom'
The official added that the United States was concerned about "violence and human rights abuses against gay, lesbian, transsexual and bisexual individuals" and was also "troubled by the criminalization of sexual orientation in many countries."

"In the words of the United States Supreme Court, the right to be free from criminalization on the basis of sexual orientation 'has been accepted as an integral part of human freedom'," the official said.

Gay rights and other groups had criticized the Bush administration when it refused to sign the declaration when it was presented at the United Nations on Dec. 19. U.S. officials said then that the U.S. opposed discrimination on the basis of sexual orientation but that parts of the declaration raised legal questions that needed further review.

According to negotiators, the Bush team had concerns that those parts could commit the federal government on matters that fall under state jurisdiction. In some 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.

It was not immediately clear on Tuesday how the Obama administration had come to a different conclusion.

70 U.N. members outlaw homosexuality
When it was voted on in December, 66 of the U.N.'s 192 member countries signed the declaration which backers called a historic step to push the General Assembly to deal more forthrightly with anti-gay discrimination.

But 70 U.N. members outlaw homosexuality and in several, homosexual acts can be punished by execution. More than 50 nations, including members of the Organization of the Islamic Conference, opposed the declaration.

Some Islamic countries said at the time that protecting sexual orientation could lead to "the social normalization and possibly the legalization of deplorable acts" such as pedophilia and incest. The declaration was also opposed by the Vatican.

http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/29745175/

PHX-SOXFAN
03-18-2009, 08:42 PM
IT's about time. we have a democratic president and a head of the RNC who acknowledges that homosexuality is not a choice. it seems everyone is moving towards tolerant thinking.

blenderboy5
03-18-2009, 11:23 PM
Mostly meaningless as the countries with the problems are the ones who won't sign it. And it's non-binding (but it's the UN lol).

I imagine it's a nice symbolic gesture, but it all depends on what it leads to.

ari1013
03-18-2009, 11:28 PM
Mostly meaningless as the countries with the problems are the ones who won't sign it. And it's non-binding (but it's the UN lol).

I imagine it's a nice symbolic gesture, but it all depends on what it leads to.
Didn't you hear Ahmedinejad? There are no gays in Iran. Duh!

blenderboy5
03-18-2009, 11:34 PM
Didn't you hear Ahmedinejad? There are no gays in Iran. Duh!

I really don't know how anyone makes a statement like that... even if you think it's a choice.

DodgersFan28
03-19-2009, 08:44 AM
Maybe I'm really, really behind on this issue, but I'm still wondering why I need to care (or know) that someone's gay? It's not like I'm asking the guy who makes my Subway sandwich if he's screwin' with Johnny on his off hours. It makes no difference. I've never understood why this has to be such a public event to know if someone's gay or not.

Zep
03-19-2009, 10:12 AM
Maybe I'm really, really behind on this issue, but I'm still wondering why I need to care (or know) that someone's gay? It's not like I'm asking the guy who makes my Subway sandwich if he's screwin' with Johnny on his off hours. It makes no difference. I've never understood why this has to be such a public event to know if someone's gay or not.

I may be misreading the above article, but I don't think it's a matter of whether you "need to know" that someone is gay or not, but rather the need to say "hey, this isn't a crime".

ari1013
03-19-2009, 10:23 AM
I really don't know how anyone makes a statement like that... even if you think it's a choice.
I don't think anyone ever called him sane.

ari1013
03-19-2009, 10:24 AM
I may be misreading the above article, but I don't think it's a matter of whether you "need to know" that someone is gay or not, but rather the need to say "hey, this isn't a crime".
Exactly. It's more of a live and let live type of deal.

b1e9a8r5s
03-19-2009, 01:55 PM
Can we all agree that a non bidding declaration from the UN isn't worth the paper its printed on?

ari1013
03-19-2009, 02:00 PM
Can we all agree that a non bidding declaration from the UN isn't worth the paper its printed on?
That applies to most anything from the UN.

blenderboy5
03-19-2009, 03:04 PM
Can we all agree that a non bidding declaration from the UN isn't worth the paper its printed on?

I'll drink to that :cheers:

Randy West
03-19-2009, 07:51 PM
Can we all agree that a non bidding declaration from the UN isn't worth the paper its printed on?

Yeah I wonder how many children died of malnutrition or how many people were ethnically cleansed in the Sudan while the UN wasted time on this important piece of world wide legislation???

blenderboy5
03-19-2009, 08:16 PM
Yeah I wonder how many children died of malnutrition or how many people were ethnically cleansed in the Sudan while the UN wasted time on this important piece of world wide legislation???

The UN can't really do anything about the first two.

Randy West
03-19-2009, 08:26 PM
So they could not send troops to the Sudan or fly in aid to starving children in third world countries??

ari1013
03-19-2009, 09:28 PM
So they could not send troops to the Sudan or fly in aid to starving children in third world countries??
Not reallly. The Muslim states consider Sudan's issues an internal conflict and therefore block any intervention from happening.

That's why the UN is worthless -- they are dominated by despotic states. They call Israel's campaign in Gaza the "worst human rights violation in history" meanwhile actual genocide goes on unnoticed.

blenderboy5
03-19-2009, 11:08 PM
So they could not send troops to the Sudan or fly in aid to starving children in third world countries??

No. Even if you deem the conflict in Darfur a genocide (which I do), the UN has it's hands tied as Ari talked about.

As a side note, it's interesting that all the reasons we shouldn't go into Darfur (genocide, internal civil war, no clear leadership, no clear exit policy, etc) are the same reasons some of you have been complaining about Iraq since 2003. But for the same compelling reason some people wanted to go into Iraq (genocide, terrible oppression, etc), we need to go to Darfur. And no one sees the conflict/irony?

ari1013
03-19-2009, 11:31 PM
I think that had we not gone into Iraq and instead focused on Afghanistan, we'd be done in Afghanistan by now and we would be able to send in, at the very least, air support into Darfur. But as it stands now, we just don't have the resources to do that.

I'm still very much not sold on Iraq as a necessary war. I understand that now that we went in we have to finish the job, but I really don't think that the situation in Iraq in 2002 was similar to the situation in Sudan today. Saddam was an evil man but he had basically been rendered toothless between the first Gulf War, the economic sanctions, and the late 1990s bombings. There was no absolute rush needed to remove him -- we could have at least worked out a good plan before doing so.

DodgersFan28
03-20-2009, 01:12 AM
but I really don't think that the situation in Iraq in 2002 was similar to the situation in Sudan today.

That's because the Kurds were gassed in the 1980s, and the attempted Kuwait invasion had already been dealt with in the early 1990s. What brought us to 2002 was the aftermath, and all the intelligence that had come through since the end of the Gulf War.


There was no absolute rush needed to remove [Saddam] -- we could have at least worked out a good plan before doing so.

You seem to forget that a 'good plan' was already achieved at the end of the Gulf War. Intelligence gathered in the years later proved otherwise. Clinton launched a few cruise missiles into a few empty tents, but that really didn't accomplish much. While the intelligence about WMDs proved to be seemingly inaccurate (it still has never been proven that the weapons did not exist, still possible they were moved to Syria, buried far underground etc), the collective theme of the intelligence was clear to the entire world. Saddam was a threat to the region, and subsequently the world, and needed to go.

Randy West
03-20-2009, 01:24 AM
No. Even if you deem the conflict in Darfur a genocide (which I do), the UN has it's hands tied as Ari talked about.

As a side note, it's interesting that all the reasons we shouldn't go into Darfur (genocide, internal civil war, no clear leadership, no clear exit policy, etc) are the same reasons some of you have been complaining about Iraq since 2003. But for the same compelling reason some people wanted to go into Iraq (genocide, terrible oppression, etc), we need to go to Darfur. And no one sees the conflict/irony?

Well **** then

could we launch a couple cruise missiles or something.

The UN could still do more to feed some kids or anything really than waste time on this kind of stuff.

ari1013
03-20-2009, 09:02 AM
That's because the Kurds were gassed in the 1980s, and the attempted Kuwait invasion had already been dealt with in the early 1990s. What brought us to 2002 was the aftermath, and all the intelligence that had come through since the end of the Gulf War.



You seem to forget that a 'good plan' was already achieved at the end of the Gulf War. Intelligence gathered in the years later proved otherwise. Clinton launched a few cruise missiles into a few empty tents, but that really didn't accomplish much. While the intelligence about WMDs proved to be seemingly inaccurate (it still has never been proven that the weapons did not exist, still possible they were moved to Syria, buried far underground etc), the collective theme of the intelligence was clear to the entire world. Saddam was a threat to the region, and subsequently the world, and needed to go.
You said it. Everything had been done in the past. We already took care of 90% of his potential. Rather than spending a trillion dollars on that last 10%, why didn't we finish the job in Afghanistan first?

In your second paragraph, you're contradicting yourself. He clearly was no longer a threat. Believe me -- if he was a threat to Israel I would still be behind that war. But as soon as the evidence started piling up that we had cooked the books, I realized that this war ultimately only served as a distraction to our goals in the War on Terror.

ari1013
03-20-2009, 09:02 AM
Well **** then

could we launch a couple cruise missiles or something.

The UN could still do more to feed some kids or anything really than waste time on this kind of stuff.
Again though, they don't give a crap about that.

blenderboy5
03-20-2009, 10:30 AM
I think that had we not gone into Iraq and instead focused on Afghanistan, we'd be done in Afghanistan by now and we would be able to send in, at the very least, air support into Darfur. But as it stands now, we just don't have the resources to do that.

Perhaps. It's easy to play that game, of course, as no one knows what would have happened. And that's assuming Bush or Obama would have sent in air support anyway. But we probably could have.



I'm still very much not sold on Iraq as a necessary war. I understand that now that we went in we have to finish the job, but I really don't think that the situation in Iraq in 2002 was similar to the situation in Sudan today. Saddam was an evil man but he had basically been rendered toothless between the first Gulf War, the economic sanctions, and the late 1990s bombings. There was no absolute rush needed to remove him -- we could have at least worked out a good plan before doing so.

But you know what it is? Going into Darfur isn't necessary... Africa truly is irrelevent to the West. Are children being murdered? Sure. But aside from the human rights violations (and remember libs and libertarians, as you reminded us-- we can't police the world...), the West could give two ***** about Africa. Countries like Iraq matter more, and not just because of oil or resources (Africa has oil too, after all).


Well **** then

could we launch a couple cruise missiles or something.

The UN could still do more to feed some kids or anything really than waste time on this kind of stuff.

We could launch missles. But then there might be collateral damage, and if it's one thing the UN/the elite/Europe knows how to do, it's ***** about the collateral damage in Gaza/West Bank. So God forbid it happens in Darfur.

As a side note, after Clinton's **** up in Somalia and the disaster in Rwanda, the UN and America are just plain hestitant to enter genocides and civil war in Africa. Can you blame them?

ari1013
03-20-2009, 10:44 AM
Perhaps. It's easy to play that game, of course, as no one knows what would have happened. And that's assuming Bush or Obama would have sent in air support anyway. But we probably could have.



But you know what it is? Going into Darfur isn't necessary... Africa truly is irrelevent to the West. Are children being murdered? Sure. But aside from the human rights violations (and remember libs and libertarians, as you reminded us-- we can't police the world...), the West could give two ***** about Africa. Countries like Iraq matter more, and not just because of oil or resources (Africa has oil too, after all).



We could launch missles. But then there might be collateral damage, and if it's one thing the UN/the elite/Europe knows how to do, it's ***** about the collateral damage in Gaza/West Bank. So God forbid it happens in Darfur.

As a side note, after Clinton's **** up in Somalia and the disaster in Rwanda, the UN and America are just plain hestitant to enter genocides and civil war in Africa. Can you blame them?
Why would taking out a toothless Saddam be necessary on the grounds that he might be able to kill thousands of people if he gets his hands on a WMD, but it's not necessary to take out the Sudanese generals each responsible for tens of thousands of deaths each year?

I'm going to agree with you that the West doesn't care about Africa. I just don't see your point.

blenderboy5
03-20-2009, 10:52 AM
Why would taking out a toothless Saddam be necessary on the grounds that he might be able to kill thousands of people if he gets his hands on a WMD, but it's not necessary to take out the Sudanese generals each responsible for tens of thousands of deaths each year?

I never said taking out Saddam was necessary. But as you said, we're already there. Now we have to finish the war in the best way possible for us and Iraq.

And no, it's not necessary to take out the generals for the same reason you probably opposed Iraq-- who would lead, how would we get out, how would we rebuild the country, can we really police the world, there's other deaths and oppression we can't invade every country that is "bad," etc

blenderboy5
03-20-2009, 12:26 PM
gay people have the same rights as everyone else. Marriage is a completely different aspect.

What makes me sad is you don't see the hypocrisy of your statement.

ari1013
03-20-2009, 12:27 PM
That's a double agreement on your last two posts BB.

Randy West
03-20-2009, 12:41 PM
My whole point in the whole conversation was just disagreeing with how the UN does things........or does not do things.

I guess that is the proper way of putting it

cabernetluver
03-20-2009, 01:03 PM
What makes me sad is you don't see the hypocrisy of your statement.

Correct you are.

DodgersFan28
03-21-2009, 12:45 AM
You said it. Everything had been done in the past. We already took care of 90% of his potential. Rather than spending a trillion dollars on that last 10%, why didn't we finish the job in Afghanistan first?

Wow, I didn't know I was talking to a Four-Star General who has such a wealth of information that it's a known fact the Gulf War took out 90% of Saddam's potential. Did you miss what I said about the intelligence gathered in years after the Gulf War ended proved the peace plan really wasn't as great as was initially thought?

The better question in my mind is why didn't we finish the job before there was a job to do in Afganistan?


In your second paragraph, you're contradicting yourself. He clearly was no longer a threat. Believe me -- if he was a threat to Israel I would still be behind that war. But as soon as the evidence started piling up that we had cooked the books, I realized that this war ultimately only served as a distraction to our goals in the War on Terror.

If he "clearly was no longer a threat" are you admitting that Clinton dropped bombs in Operation Desert Fox for basically no other reason than to distract away from the Monica scandal?

You say what you want about the intial goals of the War on Terror, but plans change over time in a war. When the U.S.-lead coalition invaded Iraq, Al-Qaeda came to fight us there. If we had retreated, like Harry Reid wanted, Al-Qaeda would have celebrated their greatest victory in their history. I was disappointed about not finding WMDs, but as soon as Al-Qaeda was fighting us in Iraq, I saw Iraq the same as I see Afganistan, only without the crazy mountaneous border region.

Now the job in Afganistan is not done by any means, but it's just way too easy to lapse into demagoguery to criticize Iraq as a distraction from Afganistan. There's really no way to know what would have happened in Afganistan had the Iraq War never happened, but, in no way does that mean we should have just left Iraq to Al-Qaeda which would have completely taken over, and made a job we would have had to go back and take care of that much harder.

LetsGoA's
03-21-2009, 01:15 AM
Yea way to go UN anti gay clause mean while in Darfur....