Wednesday, December 5

Senate Republicans act like frightened animals with new Disabilities law

"...this underscores how far out of the mainstream the GOP has moved over the last 20 years. While the ADA has proven to be a rousing success, it was at least possible for conservatives in 1990 to raise non-paranoid concerns about it, mainly relating to the burdens it would place on businesses and the potential for a lawsuit bonanza. In fact, these types of concerns were raised as the law was debated, and some changes were made in response to them – which explains why most of the conservative senators of 1990 were ultimately willing to go along with the law. 
"By contrast, the U.N. treaty raises none of the concerns about business and lawsuits that the ADA did; it simply seeks to hold up existing U.S. law as a model for the world. And yet the vast majority of Republicans in the U.S. Senate sided with the arguments of the paranoid far right and voted against it anyway. This doesn’t mean that every Republican senator who voted against the treaty actually believes these arguments. For all we know, Lindsey Graham (for instance) was treating the vote as a chance to shore up his standing with the right in advance of a potential 2014 primary fight. But that’s still telling: In the GOP of 2012, the “safe” vote is against something as noncontroversial as an international treaty based on American law and championed by a Republican icon from another era." (Emphasis mine.)
What the Republican Party has become (Salon)


  1. Look at the text of it - nations should be weary of treaties that make such claims over their signatories rights.

    Some parts of the excessive treaty that in fact go beyond current US law:

    Article 4, section 1, part (e), states must “take all appropriate measures to eliminate discrimination on the basis of disability by any person, organization or private enterprise.”
    (The employment provisions of the current federal ADA apply to employers with more than 15 employees, but Article 27 (1)(a) would seem to prescribe doing away with any such threshold)
    Article 8, “Awareness-raising,” the convention specifies that states (1) “undertake to adopt immediate, effective and appropriate measures” to (a) “raise awareness throughout society, including at the family level, regarding persons with disabilities…” and (b) “combat stereotypes, prejudices and harmful practices relating to persons with disabilities, including those based on sex and age, in all areas of life. … Measures to this end include: (a) Initiating and maintaining effective public awareness campaigns … (b) Encouraging all organs of the media to portray persons with disabilities in a manner consistent with the purpose of the present Convention.”

    Really? A treaty with a propaganda madate as a part of it?

    This is an ok thing for a government not to sign.

  2. I don't read Article 8 as 'propaganda'.