Children Have International Rights, Just Not In the US

Children Have International Rights, Just Not In the US

The UN has a Convention of the Rights of the Child, which was ratified at the UN in New York City in 1989. It was signed by all 196 eligible members of the UN, EXCEPT the US.

This was preceded by the 1959 Declaration of the Rights of the Child, which was not ratified by the US. Let’s review some of these rights.

Children have the rights to express their opinion. Those imprisoned by Trump are not allowed to speak to anybody on the outside.

States are required to provide separate legal representation for children, and the child’s viewpoint must be heard. A few people are raising funds over the web to provide lawyers for imprisoned children.

I use the word imprisoned, because some children are going to be held in a prison, the Federal Correctiional Complex in Victorville, California, which does not have sufficient medical care.  They will get 1,000 immigration detainees, which I assume now means families.

The UN High Commissioner for Human Rights, Prince Zeid Ra’ad al-Hussein of Jordan, has called Trump’s separation of them from their parents as “Child Abuse”. That is a violation of the Convention of the Rights of the Child.

The number of children initially separated has now risen to 3,000, although some are being reunited. That does not dismiss the fact that they have this trauma in their pasts.

I’m sure that the US has humane laws on the treatment of children, but they are apparently being ignored by the Trump Administration, or have not come into play yet.

These rights have to be realized through the use of Due Process in the Fifth Amendment. Trump has ignored Due Process from the first day of his campaign. He has also defamed new immigration judges as corrupt, even before they have been chosen or assigned. He also inflated the 357 requested to 5,000 to 6,000 in campaign speeches.

On his drive to the golf course, he floated the idea of suspending Due Process to all 11 million undocumented immigrants. Many of them have been in the US more than a decade. This would mean immediate forced deportation. I remember the comedy (?) “Born in East LA” staring Cheech Marin, where I think he left his wallet locked in his car, was picked up by ICE, and immediately deported.

While the first part of the Fourteenth Amendment talks about citizens, the second part says:  “nor shall any State deprive any PERSON of life, liberty or property, without due process of law, nor deny to any PERSON within its jurisdiction the equal protection of the laws.”  The Fifth Amendment ONLY talks about PERSONS.  To pass or remove an Amendment requires a 3/4 vote of all states, preceded by a 2/3 vote of both houses of Congress.  No mention is made that a President driving to play golf is enough to remove these rights.

The US granted Asylum to only 140,000 people last year. This seems like a small blip to be added to the 58 million Hispanics in the US, or 18% of the population. It is an addition of just 0.24%, or one in 400. It is only one in 2,300 Americans.  Hardly frightening, or an issue for Trump to endanger his party’s midterm reelection.

While 90% of Republicans still support Trump, only 55% approve of the the child separation. You can see why he is trying to reverse this and save face. But he also defames Latinos as members of MS13, defames Latin American Countries, stirs fear of Latinos, attacks Germany and Angela Merkel, and lies like there is no tomorrow.

About Dennis SILVERMAN

I am a retired Professor of Physics and Astronomy at U C Irvine. For a decade I have been active in learning about energy and the environment, and in lecturing and attending classes at the Osher Lifelong Learning Institute (OLLI) at UC Irvine.
This entry was posted in 2018 California Primary, 2018 Midterm Election, Donald Trump, Fifth Amendment, Freedom of Speech, Freedom of the Press, Freedoms, Immigration Ban, Immigration Policy, Politics, Secrecy, Trump Administration, Trump Wall. Bookmark the permalink.

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