Tuesday, November 26, 2019

US Women Suffer Extensive Discrimination, Abuse: Report
By Zhao Yusha
Global Times
2019/11/26 22:43:40

Protesters gather near the freedom plaza in Washington D.C., the US, January 19. Thousands of women gathered in Washington D.C. for the third Women's March, supporting women's rights while denouncing racism and violence against women. Photo: Xinhua

The US' constant "concern" for other countries' human rights situation seems ridiculous when American women suffer from "staggering" gender discrimination, Chinese observers said, after China released an article exposing serious gender discrimination in the US, which they believe helps tear down the "hypocritical veil of the US, a self-proclaimed human rights defender."

The article, titled "The Long-Standing Issue of Gender Discrimination in the United States Seriously Hinders the Realization of Women's Human Rights within the Country," was published by the China Society for Human Rights Studies (CSHRS) on Tuesday.

The article said gender discrimination is a grave problem in the US. It said American women suffer from long-term, extensive and systemic discrimination publicly and secretly, mainly involving economic inequality, serious violent offenses and a lack of protection in health rights among minority women.

On violent offenses against women, the article said one in every three women in the US has experienced domestic violence. Women in prisons suffer from serious violence. Female soldiers are often victims of sexual harassment and sexual assault during their military service.

More than 32 percent of women in the US military said they had been sexually assaulted, and 80 percent said they had been sexually harassed, the article said, citing surveys.

To expose the US' hypocrisy, the CSHRS has published several articles, criticizing the US' deep-rooted human rights problems, such as racial discrimination and gun violence. This is the first time the CSHRS has systematically touched upon the US gender discrimination issue, and more articles focusing on other human rights woes in the US may follow, a source close to the CSHRS told the Global Times.

The US dubs itself as a 'human rights defender," yet Americans actually face all sorts of human rights violations, such as racial discrimination, gender discrimination and gun violence, the source said. But the country has long been using "human rights" as an excuse to attack other countries, to meddle in other countries' internal affairs, to achieve its own political agenda, and as a tool to maintain its global hegemony, such as passing the so-called "Hong Kong Human Rights and Democracy Act" to contain the development of China, the source said.

Instead of sitting idly and letting the US smear China's human rights issue, China has also published reports on the US human rights problems in recent years. Those reports have exposed rising crime rates, a widening wealth gap and other violation of human rights in the US.

Worsening human rights conditions

The CSHRS article also said American women face sexual harassment and sexual assault on campus and in the workplace. This was mirrored by the brutal murder case of Zhang Yingying. Zhang, a Chinese scholar studied at University of Illinois at Urbana Champaign (UIUC), was kidnapped and brutally killed by Brendt Christensen, a US national who was a researcher at UIUC, two years ago. However, Christensen was sentenced to life in prison instead of death in July this year, as many had previously demanded.

Another case involves George Tyndall, a gynecologist at the University of Southern California, who was accused by hundreds of women of sexual harassment, many of them from Asia.

The case was broke only last year. Local media reported that Tyndall was suspended in 2016 after an internal investigation found that his irregular conduct constituted sexual harassment — but the university allowed him to resign without reporting him to the medical board or informing his patients.

"When I first came to China I was surprised how woman can be seen walking, driving and riding bicycles by themselves whenever they want," said Melinda,a US national working in Beijing, saying she has never seen a safer place for women.

Ever since the establishment of the UN Human Rights Council, most countries' human rights conditions have been improving. But the US is going backwards, said Chang Jian, director of the Research Center for Human Rights at China's Nankai University.

A gender pay gap still exists, and even is becoming wider, in many industries in the US. The US is one of only three countries in the world not to offer statutory paid leave for new mothers, and the only country that hasn't ratified the UN Convention on the Rights of the Child, Chang said.

Chang believes there are two different approaches to advance the development of human rights in the world. "China promotes discussions on the basis of equality and mutual respect through human rights dialogue mechanisms. No one is a teacher in this field, so this approach helps promote the healthy development of human rights globally," Chang said.

The US, on the other hand, tends to adopt a highly confrontational, selective and politicized approach to weaponize this issue, Chang said. "I think this will be a very dangerous sign for the development of human rights worldwide."

No comments: