LGBTQ People Have Reason to Fear State Dept’s New Committee on “Natural Rights” May 31, 2019

LGBTQ People Have Reason to Fear State Dept’s New Committee on “Natural Rights”

Last night, the U.S. State Department, now headed up by Mike Pompeo, announced the formation of a “Commission on Unalienable Rights.” That sounds innocuous enough until you read the details.

The Commission will provide the Secretary of State advice and recommendations concerning international human rights matters. The Commission will provide fresh thinking about human rights discourse where such discourse has departed from our nation’s founding principles of natural law and natural rights.

That word “natural” is scaring progressives for good reason since it’s evangelical code for anti-LGBTQ and anti-women policies. As conservatives have used it in the past, bills protecting “natural law and natural rights” have included blocking trans people from serving in the military, opposing marriage equality, and preventing women from controlling their own bodies.

At a time when the U.S. should be spreading freedom and democracy, this Republican administration had made it very clear that faith-based bigotry is acceptable no matter how many people are thrown under the bus to appease right-wing Christians.


… the administration also has rolled back domestic regulations aimed at protecting members of the LGBT community, especially those who are transgender.

It also has cut down sections about women’s reproductive rights in the State Department’s annual human rights report and made attempts to eliminate references to “sexual and reproductive health” in U.N. documents.

According to the notice posted Thursday, the new commission will meet at least once a month. It is not clear who will serve on the panel or when their appointments will take effect, but activists and former U.S. officials noted that its composition will greatly affect the policies it promotes.

Is there any doubt this administration will fill those spots with conservative Christian leaders who have made it their mission to back the GOP’s agenda in the name of Christ and not activists who have actually spent their lives fighting for human rights?

(Image via Shutterstock)

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