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Obama Marks Human Rights Day

President-elect Barack Obama marked international Human Rights Day today by issuing a statement reaffirming America's commitment to the Geneva Conventions. The statement follows:

The United States was founded on the idea that all people are endowed with inalienable rights, and that principle has allowed us to work to perfect our union at home while standing as a beacon of hope to the world. Today, that principle is embodied in agreements Americans helped forge -- the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, the Geneva Conventions, and treaties against torture and genocide -- and it unites us with people from every country and culture.

When the United States stands up for human rights, by example at home and by effort abroad, we align ourselves with men and women around the world who struggle for the right to speak their minds, to choose their leaders, and to be treated with dignity and respect. We also strengthen our security and well being, because the abuse of human rights can feed many of the global dangers that we confront -- from armed conflict and humanitarian crises, to corruption and the spread of ideologies that promote hatred and violence.

So on this Human Rights Day, let us rededicate ourselves to the advancement of human rights and freedoms for all, and pledge always to live by the ideals we promote to the world.

By Web Politics Editor  |  December 10, 2008; 6:24 PM ET
Categories:  Barack Obama  
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Comments

Yes, Mr. President-elect, on this Human Rights Day lets pledge "To Live and Let Live"!

Posted by: AnjuChandel | December 12, 2008 1:12 AM | Report abuse

Once again the radical rightists try to twist Obama's message to fit their own distorted view of reality.
Many thanks to President-elect Obama for stating once again that we are citizens of the UNITED States of America, in spite of all the grumble-guts and dampen-glees muttering out there on the fringes.
Whether the rabid fundamentalists like it or not, one's civil rights and citizenship have nothing whatsoever to do with one's creed, social status, skin color or sexual orientation.

As for the anti-abortion comments, if there were easier access to contraception and factual sex education available to those who need it, perhaps there would actually be less need for termination proceedures in this country or around the world.

Posted by: luise1 | December 11, 2008 6:40 PM | Report abuse

What about Human Rights for our unborn children that are dying 4000 a day?

Posted by: TraceyfromCanada | December 11, 2008 3:18 PM | Report abuse

So "Human Rights Day" is AKA "Gay Day"??

Posted by: TraceyfromCanada | December 11, 2008 3:16 PM | Report abuse

To ladyesq1:

While I absolutely agree with you on gay/lesbian issues (I am straight myself, but support civil rights without any caveats, for all humans), I would like to mention that Nancy Sutley, who is openly lesbian, has been nominated to chair the White House Council on Environmental Quality. Given Pres.-Elect Obama's other appointments and emphasis on environmental issues, I have full confidence that Ms. Sutley will have the respect and ear of the new president and be a major voice in the administration.

Give the guy a chance. He's not president yet and has no real authority! While I understand that this is an issue of overriding importance to you, the fact is that the problems facing this country affect everyone-- not just those in the straight or gay or white or ethnic or wealthy or poorer communities. His first priority, and rightfully so, will be to get the economy back on track.

I saw the phrases "all people" and "dignity and respect" in this message. Nowhere did I see the phrase "except gays and lesbians"! I have no doubt that after his inauguration, you'll see President Obama walking the walk. I become more impressed and inspired by this man, and hopeful for the next 4 (and perhaps 8) years, every day. I hope you will be, too.

Posted by: dcgrasso1 | December 11, 2008 10:22 AM | Report abuse

Does this include GAY "human beings", Barack? If so, get your a$$ out there and make a speech against the banning of gay marriage/adoption in FL and CA (and throughout the U.S. for that matter).

Quit giving us JUST WORDS! Give us ACTION, Barack. Thus far, you've done nothing but let us down with your fancy rhetoric and no follow through.

Posted by: ladyesq1 | December 11, 2008 9:27 AM | Report abuse

What a unified and excellent piece of work must I say. These are words that have been a part of our nation since the duration of time, however, have not been fully exercised. These are words that make me proud to be an American, words that inspire me, words that makes our nation stand out in boldness and if exercised properly would in my honest opinion restore and establish a worldwide democracy throughout every corner of this globe. So let’s be mindful that we need unite on all levels that our nation from every four corners of this world can experience and stand together on one accord with a mindset that together we can accomplish much when in unity and treated fairly via the proper protocol, which is stated in the Bill of Rights and the Constitution with no respecter of persons. Unite at home in a democracy, and it shall prevail elsewhere. Last, but not least , I commend President Elect Obama on such an incorporation of ideals to be implemented and exercised as he marks human rights day. God Bless America.

Posted by: Nisey01 | December 11, 2008 8:21 AM | Report abuse

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