Hidden Controversy Over Abortion and Female Genital Mutilation at UN Summit
September 5, 2002 12:39 PM   Subscribe

Hidden Controversy Over Abortion and Female Genital Mutilation at UN Summit At the United Nations Earth Summit, delegates from the United States opposed a Canadian proposal to require countries to provide health care "in conformity with all human rights and fundamental freedoms," because American pro-life activists feared the wording would expand abortion rights. In addition, the Bush Administration does not want a confrontation with its ally, Saudi Arabia, over the issue of female genital mutilation.
posted by jonp72 (6 comments total)
If you are pro-choice, maybe you shouldn't use the propaganda "pro-life." "Pro-life" means anti-abortion, and that's it. It doesn't, for example, imply being against the death penalty or against tobacco.

"Pro-choice" is a little propaganda-like, too, although it does imply that many on that side of the debate, while not explicitly for abortion themselves, believe that others should be allowed to choose for themselves. "Pro-abortion" wouldn't really cover those people.
posted by callmejay at 1:01 PM on September 5, 2002

There certainly seems to be a long list of issues the US would rather not confront Saudia Arabia about.
posted by filchyboy at 1:04 PM on September 5, 2002

It is well past the time the US should pull out of the UN. Especially if all we are doing there is keeping the majority of the world's population from being able to implement their desires. The pullout would be good for everyone.
posted by thirteen at 1:19 PM on September 5, 2002

In an alternate universe of justice and moderate humanism the Vatican, Saudi Arabia and the United States would be in the Second Axis of Evil.

Now seriously, I read this on a Portuguese newspaper a couple of days ago and it also included the Vatican. Notice the typical absense of the topic on US media...
posted by edsousa at 1:20 PM on September 5, 2002

By the way, I am pro-choice, but I follow the journalistic convention of calling political groups by what they want to be called. So I call activists who oppose abortion "pro-life," because that is the term they prefer. I know this, because I have interviewed several dozen pro-life and pro-choice activists and you don't get as many interviews as I have without being respectful of people's terminology. And as a grad student doing a thesis on the politics of abortion in the United States, I am well aware that you enter a terminological minefield whenever you start discussing abortion.
posted by jonp72 at 7:01 PM on September 5, 2002

If "human rights = abortion" (as the anti-choice crowd claims in one of the links) and they oppose abortion, are they not implicitly saying "we oppose human rights"?

... and then who calls who "axis of evil"?

... and why do they ask "why do they hate us"?
posted by magullo at 7:28 AM on September 6, 2002

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