Commentary: Washington Should Reflect On Its Double Standards On Human Rights

Protests over George Floyd’s death

GENEVA, June 22 (NNN-XINHUA) – The U N Human Rights Council (UNHRC) adopted a resolution, strongly condemning the continuing racially discriminatory and violent practices, perpetrated by law enforcement agencies, against Africans and people of African descent.

The resolution, in particular, denounced police brutality that led to the deaths of U.S. citizen, George Floyd, in Minneapolis and other people of African descent.

It is ironic that the United States, which has an ingrained habit of finger-pointing at other countries over so-called human rights issues, is now in the hot seat.

For the first time in history, UNHRC held an urgent debate, regarding racism, and called an urgent meeting to discuss the human rights issue in the United States.

Many participants believe Floyd’s tragic killing has crossed the bottom line of humanity and exposed chronic and deeply-rooted racial discrimination in the United States.

The nationwide protests over Floyd’s death demonstrate that more and more people cannot brush aside the growing social injustice in the United States and are crying for change.

However, Washington has been quite unwilling to face up to this human rights issue and cure the malady in a systematic fashion.

In 2016, the Working Group of Experts on People of African Descent from the UNHRC said, in its U.S. country report that, killings of unarmed African Americans by police were “only the tip of the iceberg, in what is a pervasive racial bias in the justice system.”

In two universal periodic reviews — a process which involves a review of the human rights records of all UN member states — of the United States over the past decade, concerns have been expressed about racial discrimination, impunity, disregard for life and brutality.

However, Uncle Sam turned a deaf ear to such criticisms, while the situation worsened in the country.

“The anger we see in the U.S., erupting as COVID-19 exposes glaring inequalities in society, shows why far-reaching reforms and inclusive dialogue are needed there, to break the cycle of impunity for unlawful killings by police and racial bias in policing,” UN High Commissioner for Human Rights, Michelle Bachelet, said, earlier in June.

The frustration and discontent of the American public stem from increasing social fragmentation in the country. Americans are becoming more divided economically, socially and racially, but Washington is doing little to change things and meet the basic needs of its citizens.

The U.S. likes to lecture other countries on human rights, but regrettably fails to address its disturbing human rights problems at home.

What happened in the past month in the U.S. further exposed the hypocrisy of U.S. politicians over human rights issues. They call violent demonstrations elsewhere “a beautiful sight to behold” and normal law enforcement as “abuse of power,” turning a blind eye to its own problems. Their double standards on human rights have been laid bare.

George Floyd’s death sparked anger, disappointment and protests across the U.S. and around the world. Its high time Washington listened to calls of the people and the international community, reflected on its double standards, and took action to address its own problems.

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