A Ruse

Austin Ruse

Austin Ruse reports for the Friday Fax — One of the great debates at the UN over the last few decades has been over how to wedge the LGBT issue into the UN dialogue. Member states were largely uninterested. Conservative and religiously minded countries knew the issue was a radicalizing one.

The debate tended to play itself out in the UN Human Rights Council in Geneva, far from New York headquarters where conservative western NGOs can play a more active role in the debate.

In Geneva, year in and year out, Brazil would play stalking horse for the pro-gay European countries. Annually, Brazil would propose language that would place “sexual orientation and gender identity” as a new category of non-discrimination. Each year it was defeated.

The issue came to fruition in 2016 with the adoption of a resolution calling for a report on violence against gays and called for the appointment of an “independent expert” to develop this report, someone who can travel around the world gathering information, making statements, and generally pushing governments toward acceptance of SOGI into non-discrimination law.

The fears of opponents have played themselves out in recent years with the appointment of Costa Rican Victor Madrigal-Borloz as the “independent expert.” Madrigal has gone far beyond reporting on violence against gays.

In the recent coronavirus crisis, he complained that “isolation may impose greater challenges upon those who carry out [prostitution] and other types of information work.”

His office’s 2019 report on “gender identity” said, “The notion that there is a gender norm, from which certain gender identities ‘vary’ or ‘depart’ is based on a series of preconceptions that must be challenged if all humankind is to enjoy human rights.” One misconception that has to go is “that human nature is to be classified with reference to a male/female binary system on the basis of the sex assigned at birth.” Madrigal believes that “self-determined gender is a cornerstone of a person’s identity.”

Madrigal’s annual report for 2019 complained about a backlash from what he called “ultraconservative and ultranationalist groups reclaiming ‘identities’ at the expense of sexual and gender minorities…” He goes on, “in recent years, these groups have developed discourses that undermine rights relating to gender and sexuality and have built new strategic alliances and increased or [sic] advocacy efforts in international spaces in the hope that progress already made will be rolled back.” It is likely that Madrigal is complaining about pro-life and pro-family NGOs working at UN headquarters in New York and Geneva. He wants political leaders, along with the corporate world and the media, to punish those who disagree with his LGBT agenda.

Opponents of the proposed annual report warned that this new office would go far beyond merely producing evidence of violence against gays and would push to make “sexual orientation and gender identity” new legal categories of non-discrimination and that religious opponents would be demonized. The most recent reports and Madrigal’s statement make clear these warnings were well-founded.  Madrigal has called for governments to “adopt decisive action when religious authorities, leaders or agents infringe on the rights of LGBT persons through violence and discrimination, including hate speech.” Hate speech would include anyone disagreeing with the agenda and organizing against it.

Categories: United Nations