I Am My Brother’s Keeper: A Juneteenth Message The Brother of George Floyd Offers Historic Testimony before Global Human Rights Body On Wednesday, three weeks after the killing of George Floyd, his brother riveted the United Nations Human Rights Council with resounding testimony about the grief and anger the family experienced after seeing their loved…

George Floyd’s Right to Life & America’s Crisis of Racialized Police Violence George Floyd’s death at the hands of Minneapolis police—the cruel, unjustified killing of yet another Black man by White officers charged to protect and serve—is a mournful window into America’s shameful human rights crisis. If the inherent right to life venerated in our founding…

In This Together The Human Right to Health Care in the Time of COVID-19 Several weeks ago, World Health Organization officials finally named the global transmission of the novel corona virus with a powerful word previously avoided: pandemic. Cases of COVID-19, the disease caused by the virus, are spreading rapidly and now top 85,000 in…

Human Rights Day 2019 A Litany of Wrongs & an Advent Invitation Many of us are besieged right now with calls to embrace the joy of the season—to plan parties, buy gifts, don our most festive faces. The promise of time with family and friends sparks joy, indeed, as does the anticipation of Christmas, even…

Housing Not Handcuffs: Pushing Back Against Punishment of the Homeless On the San Francisco Bay Area public transit system last spring, I saw a heavily armed police officer rouse a man who was sleeping peacefully on the seat in front of me, his humble load of well-worn belongings beside him. The officer forced him to…

  From Tragedy to Triumph: Courageous Survivors & the Quest for Justice Last week I saw a remarkable documentary film, “A Thousand Girls Like Me,” about one brave Afghan woman’s astounding quest for justice after years of sexual violence. Khatera, 23 and pregnant, seeks help from no less than 13 religious leaders. Most tell her to…

Amidst a Torrent of Injustice, the Hope of Advent & the Promise of Human Rights Day While the world faces an unprecedented refugee crisis, our government is slashing a program to welcome a small fraction of those in most danger. Although a commission of global experts confirmed the dangerous racism of our policing system, last week Atatiana…

In recent weeks, U.S. ally Saudi Arabia was found to be responsible for the grisly extrajudicial killing of American resident and international journalist, Jamal Khashoggi. Intelligence confirming that this happened at the behest of Saudi’s Crown Prince has moved legislators on both side of the aisle to decry the murder and distance themselves from Saudi Arabia. Yet…

    Virtuosos of Hypocrisy at the United Nations Much has transpired in the realm of foreign affairs since the recent announcement that the United States would withdraw from the United Nations Human Rights Council. But as our traditional alliances are being strained and our President pursues closer ties with Russia, it worth revisiting this…

  God’s Children in Need: Justice & Rights for America’s Poor (Part II) My last blog post reflected on the pressing needs of America’s poor—needs underscored by the recent findings of Philip Alston, the United Nations Special Rapporteur on Extreme Poverty and Human Rights. Who constitutes America’s poor? At least 40 million people according to the U.S. Census…

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