Look to the children!

We pride ourselves as a nation on many things, but we are beginning to realize the extent to which there is much false pride. To include our treatment of children in the list may surprise many of us.

The other sticking point for the American delegation [to the United Nations General Assembly Special Session on Children] is the degree to which the conference document can refer to a landmark 1989 treaty on children's rights. Along with Somalia, the United States is the only country [on earth] that has not ratified the so-called Convention on the Rights of the Child. The treaty prohibits countries from using the death penalty against criminals under age 18, a practice permitted in many American states.
Note that Somalia does not now and has not for some time had any semblance of a government, precluding the possibility of its ratification of an agreement of any kind. We have no such excuse.

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Published on May 9, 2002 12:24 PM.

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