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The United States International Human Rights Policy (Essay Sample)
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THE U.S INTERNATIONAL HUMAN RIGHTS POLICY
Due to the overarching importance of promoting fundamental human rights internationally, the United States has the primary role of leading from the front line as the worlds' greatest and most developed democracy. In the recent past, the US government has been in the spotlight for violating and perpetuating human rights abuses domestically and in most of its overseas military operations. Although it has been accused by the human rights experts on various accounts of injustices such as unlawful killings, abandoning its role as a global leader in fulfilling, respecting, and protecting human rights is not an option. Instead, the United States need to review its foreign and international human rights policy to promote and re-establish its position as a protector of universal respect for human rights. Policy options are many such as promoting democracy and prioritizing support for either the regional of the global human rights organization. All these options are feasible; however prioritizing to support the regional organizations is most preferable as it requires fewer actors and regional organizations and NGOs understand incidences of abuse in their areas better.
The U.S International Human Rights Policy
The United States has for a very long time continued to experience many and increasingly serious concerns about strengthening, reforming, and evaluating the international human rights regime. In the United States context, the promotion of human rights agenda is significantly a governmental foreign policy objective. However, enacting these policies is not clear cut as it is frequently fraught with various competing strategic priorities and different ethical quandaries (Christopher, 2014, p. 281). In the establishment of US, one of the critical foundation stones was to protect the fundamental human rights. The United States foreign policy has since then been guided by the interest to promote and respect fundamental human rights as enshrined in the country’s universal declaration of human rights.
This principle was established in light and deep conviction of securing international peace, strengthening democracies, combating corruption and crime, promoting the rule of law, deterring aggression, and preventing humanitarian crises. The United States has not maintained a positive record in promoting human rights as it has failed to ratify most international human rights treaties despite having been an early leader in championing for universal human rights (Yonatan, 2013, p. 503). As a matter of fact, The United States foreign policy has not been successful in promoting universal human rights and has not always respected human rights. On the other hand, the United States government has also failed to protect social and economic rights and fundamental human rights both domestically and internationally.
Background of the U.S Human Rights Policy
In the twenty-first century, designing the human rights policy of the United States must be guided by the need to select partners and tactics that uphold the and consistently safeguard the values and interests of the United States. On the other hand, the policy must protect the victims of human rights abuses and help the U. S to hold the perpetrators accountable. The US has an international obligation to protect and respect human rights as enshrined in the international human rights law (Henry, Alston & Goodman, 2008, p. 37). Since it is a party to international treaties, it is bound by the international law to honor the obligation in fulfilling, protecting, and respecting human rights. In this regard, the obligation to respect underlines the country’s role in refraining from curtailing or interfering with human rights by limiting their enjoyment.
On the other hand, the obligation to protect implies that the United States has a role of protecting individuals and groups from any form of human rights abuses. Additionally, the obligation of the United States to fulfill human rights underscores the country’s responsibility in taking positive actions to enhance the enjoyment of fundamental human rights by the international community. America has always been at the forefront in championing for international democracy and freedom in its foreign policy to build its relations with the rest of the global nations (Henry, Alston & Goodman, 2008, p. 33). Most importantly, its foreign policy is guided by the pursuit of good governance and the tearing down barriers. It is also motivated by the need to establish increasingly strong and wide links with the world's population based on the advancement of fundamental human rights and the rule of law.
Unfortunately, the United States has not been critical has been abandoning the leading role it plays in championing for global human rights agenda. Convincingly, the US has been in the spotlight due to the blistering reports and allegations issued by the United Nations Human Rights Committee regarding the role played by the US government in perpetuating human rights' abuses and injustices both domestically and internationally. Myriads of questions have, therefore, been raised by human rights experts concerning the compliance of the US government with the international human rights law and its other ratified international human rights treaties. Many critical areas of concerns raised about the United States revolves around its human rights injustices and abuses in the treatment of migrants, its international counter-terrorism activities, and racial disparities.
Significantly, the US government has continued to implement felon disenfranchisement laws and an unfair criminal justice system that perpetuates racism. This has resulted in perennial abuses of the fundamental human rights characterized by disproportionate incarceration of the minority populations, unlawful killing of terror suspects, and severe sentencing and denial of civil rights (Yonatan, 2013, p. 503). The United States government has, in this regard, been involved in perpetuating human rights abuses and has no commitment to honor the international human rights law. On the other hand, the government has been overly reluctant to ratify some important international treaties related to human rights. Additionally, the US government has been opposed to some international human rights related systems including the ICC (International Criminal Court).
The United States government is faced with numerous human rights abuses and injustices perpetuated by the government in most of its most of its overseas operations across the world. The injustices are a perfect example that the United States government undermines its values and interest stipulated in the Universal Declaration of Human...
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