In previous administrations, the United States placed pressure on every country it dealt with to improve their human rights records. Ronald Reagan said, “America is a shining city upon a hill whose beacon light guides freedom-loving people everywhere.” We were considered an example for all of the nations of the world of how a civilized nation behaved. We were the ones that did not torture, that believed in equality and freedom, that had a free press and free elections.
But at that time America still had its own Human Rights abuses. There was violence against blacks and LGBT people had a hard time. We are still one of the few developed nations that allow capital punishment. But we were making constant progress and decreasing human rights abuses – until now.
Donald Trump during his campaign said that he would be in favor of bringing back torture, he told his supporters to beat the sh*t out of protestors and that he would pay their legal fees. He has embraced the world’s worst tyrants who practice human rights abuses, and now he has told Saudi Arabia, arguably the worst abuser of human rights, that we are not going to preach to them about human rights.
It seems that Donald Trump has empowered many of the racists by leading the attacks on President Obama, and by defending racism by saying that political correctness has gotten out of hand. Now that Trump has refused to criticize regimes that engage in human rights abuses is he likewise empowering those abusers? Is he encouraging further human rights abuses and making the world worse for minorities, women, the LGBT, and the world’s most vulnerable people?
The United States is certainly better at protecting human rights than many, perhaps most other countries, but we are no longer the best. If we are going to talk about human rights abuses, we should do some research on what is happening in the rest of the world and here at home.
The United Nations laid out the UNIVERSAL DECLARATION OF HUMAN RIGHTS. All of the member nations have pledged themselves to achieve, in cooperation with the United Nations, the promotion of universal respect for and observance of human rights and fundamental freedoms. http://www.humanrights.com/what-are-human-rights/universal-declaration-of-human-rights/preamble.html
This is a good presentation of human rights abuses worldwide. http://www.humanrights.com/what-are-human-rights/violations-of-human-rights/
The World Watch Organization keeps pretty good tabs on human rights abuses. This is a good report on human rights abuses in the United States. https://www.hrw.org/world-report/2016/country-chapters/united-states/