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Trump’s new ‘rights’ commission is packed with anti-LGBT activists

Nick Duffy July 11, 2019
President Donald Trump speaks alongside Vice President Mike Pence and Secretary of State Mike Pompeo

President Donald Trump speaks alongside Vice President Mike Pence and Secretary of State Mike Pompeo. (Andrew Harrer-Pool/Getty)

LGBT+ groups have expressed concern after Donald Trump launched a ‘natural law’ commission that is dominated by members with anti-LGBT beliefs.

Trump’s current Secretary of State Mike Pompeo announced plans to undercut the US government’s existing human rights framework on Monday (July 7), with the formation of a Commission on Unalienable Rights.

Pompeo claimed the body is necessary because “international institutions designed and built to protect human rights have drifted from their original mission,” suggesting different rights have “come into tension with one another.”

New Trump ‘rights’ commission dominated by anti-LGBT viewpoints

Seven of the ten members on the new Trump administration commission have previously expressed anti-LGBT views.

Researchers from GLAAD revealed that the body’s members have described same-sex marriage as “radical social experiment,” and claimed that marriage equality is “one of the signs of the End Times.”

The body will be chaired by Mary Ann Glendon, a law professor who has previously claimed that same-sex marriage would “impair… the rights of children” and lead to kids being “taught about homosexual sex.”

US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo is joined by commission chair Harvard Professor Mary Ann Glendon while announcing the formation of a commission to redefine human rights, based on “natural law and natural rights”, during a news conference at the Department of State, on July 8, 2019 in Washington, DC.
US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo is joined by commission chair Harvard Professor Mary Ann Glendon while announcing the formation of a commission to redefine human rights, based on “natural law and natural rights”, during a news conference at the Department of State, on July 8, 2019 in Washington, DC. (Mark Wilson/Getty)

Commission member Peter Berkowitz said the 2003 Supreme Court ruling that decriminalised homosexuality was “dangerous,” while Meir Soloveichik suggested that letting gay people marry would lead to calls to accept bestiality.

Another member, Christopher Tollefsen, has attacked trans advocates as “heartless” proponents of “bodily mutilation.”

New Trump commission an ‘anti-LGBT farce’

Sarah Kate Ellis, President and CEO of LGBT+ charity GLAAD, said: “This ‘Commission’ is a farce and further illustrates the bold-faced anti-LGBTQ agenda of this administration.

The Trump Administration is knowingly appointing activists who have made careers out of fighting against LGBTQ progress.

“The Trump Administration is knowingly appointing activists who have made careers out of fighting against LGBTQ progress and is now providing them an opportunity to export their anti-LGBTQ activism around the world through the U.S. State Department.”

GLAAD adds that the commission’s launch is “the 117th attack against the LGBTQ community by the Trump Administration since the start of 2017.”

Joanne Lin, national director of advocacy and government affairs at Amnesty International USA said: “This administration has actively worked to deny and take away long-standing human rights protections since Trump’s inauguration. If this administration truly wanted to support people’s rights, it would use the global framework that’s already in place. Instead, it wants to undermine rights for individuals, as well as the responsibilities of governments.

“This approach only encourages other countries to adopt a disregard for basic human rights standards and risks weakening international, as well as regional frameworks, placing the rights of millions of people around the world in jeopardy.

“International agreements, like the Universal Declaration for Human Rights, have been upheld by prior administrations over the last 71 years, regardless of their party.

“This politicisation of human rights in order to, what appears to be an attempt to further hateful policies aimed at women and LGBTQ people, is shameful.”

More: Commission, Donald Trump, LGBT, Religion, Trump

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