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Sexual Orientation and Gender Identity are Not Human Rights

Policy makers around the world are regularly informed by seemingly authoritative sources that “sexual orientation and gender identity” are new categories of non-discrimination in international law.

What this means is that national and international laws have to change to accept the idea that homosexuality and its various permutations including transvestitism cannot be discriminated against in any way.

Such non-discrimination would mean changes in marriage laws, adoption laws, and even the use of public restrooms. It would mean such notions couldn’t be kept out of any level of schooling including grade schools. As often as not, such claims of non-discrimination end up discriminating against Christians and others who have moral and religious objections to such notions.

We do not object to ensuring that homosexuals are not discriminated against in any unjust way. And we certainly oppose laws that make homosexuality or homosexual acts capital offenses. And we call upon all people of good will never to harm homosexuals in any way.

But opposing the homosexual agenda is a far cry from favoring the harm of homosexuals. And even though we favor protecting homosexuals from harm, it does not mean we hold that sexual orientation and gender identity are protected classes in international law. There are already international treaties that specifically protect such harms including the 1966 covenants that brought the Universal Declaration of Human Rights into legal force, the treaty against torture, and others.

The fact is that sexual orientation and gender identity are not accepted categories of nondiscrimination in UN treaties or other aspects of international law. It does not matter that the Secretary General of the United Nations says so. He is not only wrong; he oversteps his authority in saying so. It is also irrelevant that UN committees say so, or that law professors say so, or that the High Commissioner for Human Rights says so. It is a falsehood to claim that the UN General Assembly has ever agreed to such a notion.

Proponents of such a notion believe that if you get enough seemingly authoritative sources to make such a claim, then the claim becomes true. But the fact is that at least half the Member States of the United Nations oppose even using the phrase “sexual orientation and gender identity” even in non-binding documents let alone in hard law treaties. International law is made by treaty and not by the comments of the Secretary General.

We salute the Member States that have opposed this notion in the General Assembly. We salute also those countries that have determined not to remain on defense. Too often countries representing traditional peoples are rather like punching bags for the radical left at the UN. And they tend to stand there taking punch after punch after punch. But some countries are going on offense.

A coalition of 60 countries representing all regions of the world signed a joint declaration in 2008 making clear their opposition to regularizing sexual orientation and gender identity. Moreover, some countries, such as Russia and others in Eastern Europe, are outlawing homosexual propaganda in schools. While concomitant violence against homosexual is deeply regrettable, such countries have a right to oppose the indoctrination of their children with immoral and unhealthy notions of sexuality.

C-FAM urges governments to continue standing up to the radical sexual left and to block all efforts to make sexual orientation and gender identity new categories in international law.


This article is courtesy the "Friday Fax" of the Catholic Family and Human Rights Institute (C-FAM).
  • We inevitably buy into the terminology that is foisted on us, and so we’ve conceded part of the debate before we’ve even gotten started. There is no such thing as “sexual orientation” or even “sexual preference” because homosexual relations aren’t sex, they’re sodomy. Similarly, there is no such thing as “gender identity”; here the word “sex” is appropriate; people have the sex of male or female. Gender, as has been pointed out before on this site, is an attribute of nouns and pronouns in some foreign languages.

    Maybe the title should be “Sodomy and self-chosen sex are not human rights.” That speaks somewhat louder, yes?

    • MarcusBickford

      Please do your research before you make claims like this – frankly, it’s childish and unchristian of you to be making careless assertions without respect for the dignity of LGBTQ persons.

      1. “Homosexual relations” are not necessarily “sodomy.” Many LGBT couples participate in various forms of sexual intimacy, which may or may not include anal sex.

      2. For those who do enjoy anal sex, being gay does not equal anal sex – it’s about being in love with someone who happens to have the same genitalia. Whether or not you consider anything besides vaginal intercourse “sex” is up to you – what is not up to you is deciding that for other people.

      3. People actually don’t always have the biological sex of male or female – have you heard of intersex individuals?

      4. Who are you to decide whether or not gender identity is a thing? You want to believe biologically male people to behave explicitly masculinely, and biologically female people to behave explicitly femininely? Great, it’s your right to believe that – but not everybody has the same beliefs as you.

      • Harry Flynn

        :::eye roll:::

  • xy-xx

    ph, some might think of you as clueless.