Since even the US Supreme Court has declined to hold police accountable for enforcing restraining orders, one extreme case of officers “shirking” the duty is headed to the Inter-American Commission on Human Rights.
Jan 5 – No one denied that the murder of the three little girls by their father was a tragedy, but a dispute over whether the government shared responsibility for the killings has rippled all the way from a small Colorado town to an international tribunal.
After the Supreme Court’s rejection of the aggrieved mother’s claim that the Constitution entitled her family to certain protections from her estranged husband, the American Civil Liberties Union is bringing the case to an international human-rights court.
Read the full article here.
This case has bold implications for governments worldwide. The U.S. increasingly refuses to be bound by international law yet hypocritically routinely criticizes other nations, such as China or Cuba, for human rights violations. Looking beyond the immediate issue, the whole question of whether internationally recognized human rights can be limited by any State is brought into focus by the case. The U.S. would likely view any decision by the non-US court as irrelevant or a challenge to its sovereignty. And yet, the U.S. plays by a different set of rules when dealing with other countries, criticizing (often justly, if hypocritically) select human rights transgressions by its rivals and enemies, who invariably protest this as an “intervention in our internal affairs”. What is the saying about ‘people who live in glass houses not throwing stones’?
Other examples of a double standard by countries allegedly subscribing to a higher notion of justice? Take so-called “democratic” U.S. ally, Japanese Prime Minister Koizumi, who thinks nothing of criticizing “bizarre” States like North Korea (which, by the way, most closely resembles pre-war Emperor-worshipping Japan). Koizumi, when criticized by China as well as North AND South Korea for offending their sensibilities by “worshipping” at Yasukuni Shrine, again resorts to the easily wielded protest at “interference in our domestic affairs.” And yet Koizumi snubs his nose at the many in Japan who are just as alarmed at the increasing belligerence of Koizumi and company as they blithely glorify pre-war fascism (the very reason for Yasukuni’s existence), something evident to anyone visiting their museum on the premises) while supporting the illegal war waged by the U.S. and U.K. in Iraq.
The connection between this article about a woman whose kids were killed because the police felt free to ignore a restraining order against her husband and the politics of the U.S. and Japan is that justice is a relative term, that there is increasingly little difference between those states we have come to expect to be repressive and those we had assumed were in the business of upholding human freedoms. So much for the right of any State to claim authority over its citizens when it fails to protect them and hides behind the often false flag of sovereignty.
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