- The Washington Times - Thursday, June 13, 2002

They're at it again, those coercive utopians, trying to re-master humanity in their own image, this time via the radical dictates of the United Nations' Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Discrimination Against Women, CEDAW for short. This sovereignty-eroding treaty first took shape some 23 years ago, and now, with 169 signatories not including the United States, serves as a platform from which Brave New Worlders take aim at nations for failing to impose "full equality between men and women." The U.N. sees such "equality" luckily, still largely theoretical as a state of being that extends way beyond the legal realm to the cultural, religious and familial spheres. No relationship or practice is too private for the dictates of CEDAW, and no religion or tradition is beyond its purview.

Thus, Belarus is castigated for the "prevalence of sex-role stereotypes" perpetuated in Mother's Day. Indonesia is admonished for "existing social, religious and cultural norms that recognize men as the head of the family." CEDAW's committee "strongly" urges Armenia to combat typecasting women as mothers, while Slovenia is disparaged because 30 percent and not more of the nation's under-3 set is in institutional day care, leaving the rest to languish in the charge of mothers and other private individuals.

But it's not only the de-Mom-ization of mothers that CEDAW champions. Reading its call to eliminate "any stereotyped concept of the roles of men and women," mainly through "the revision of textbooks and school programs and the adaptation of teaching methods," you just might find yourself humming "Bright Re-Education-Camp Days." Additionally, CEDAW urges women into combat, abortion on demand and the legalization of prostitution. It also pushes the Catholic Church to remake itself because of its age-old teachings, not clergy's recent crimes.

The treaty also demands "a change in the traditional role of men as well as the role of women in society." To bring this about, CEDAW calls on governments to "take all appropriate action to modify the social and cultural patterns of conduct of men and women" can't wait to see the definition of "appropriate" in order to eliminate "practices which are based on the idea of the inferiority or superiority of either of the sexes or on stereotyped roles for men and women." In other words, if the United States ever signs on, "social and cultural patterns of conduct" like Monday Night Football are history.

Thankfully, that's still a big "if." Having languished unratified since the Carter years, even through a decade's-worth of Democratic Senates, CEDAW is coming to the Senate Foreign Relations Committee this week through the good offices of Democratic Sens. Barbara Boxer and Joseph Biden. The treaty requires a two-thirds majority 67 votes to pass the full Senate and is unlikely to get it. Which may be why the White House is keeping silent on CEDAW. But this is one stinker of a treaty, and well worth the White House publicly turning its nose up at it. That would be an act of "discrimination" freedom-lovers everywhere could applaud.


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