A brief look at human rights violations: (Part 1) in the USA

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Publish Date : 05/19/2018 11:38
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The human rights record of the United States itself remained tarnished and showed a continued tendency to deteriorate.

With consideration of development, income and social and cultural basis indexes, some countries should have higher standards of the observation of human rights, and have lesser obstacles in respecting these rights. Meanwhile, the record books of countries such as the United States, Britain, France etc. there are many human rights violations which seriously put to question the claims of these countries to be human rights defenders. In this report we shall take a brief look at the human rights situation in the United States, in April and May 2018.

 

1- A report by Institute for Social Policy and Understanding in Washington analyzes what happens to perpetrators based on the perception of their ideologies. The examples examined in this report found that, for similar plots, Muslim-perceived perpetrators received harsher legal charges and longer prison sentences than their non-Muslim counterparts. Perpetrators identified as Muslim also had qualitatively different media coverage than perpetrators not identified as Muslim.
- On average, prosecutors sought three times the sentence length for Muslim perpetrators as for perpetrators not identified as Muslim for similar plots of attempted ideologically driven violence. Additionally, Muslim perpetrators received four times the average sentence as their non-Muslim counterparts for attempted plots of similar conduct.
- Undercover law enforcement or an informant provided the means of the crime (such as a firearm or inert bomb) in a majority (two-thirds) of convictions in plots involving a perceived Muslim perpetrator, but in a small fraction (two out of twelve) of those involving a non-Muslim perpetrator.
- In terms of print media coverage, Muslim-perceived perpetrators received twice the absolute quantity of media coverage as their non-Muslim counterparts in the cases of violent completed acts.
- Differences also extended to media references to a perceived Muslim perpetrator’s religion as compared to ideologies of perceived non-Muslims, mentions of specific phrases such as “terrorist” or “terrorism,” and coverage of the ultimate prison sentences.


2- The 2018 World Press Freedom Index, compiled by Reporters Without Borders (RSF), reflects growing animosity towards journalists. More and more democratically-elected leaders no longer see the media as part of democracy’s essential underpinning, but as an adversary to which they openly display their aversion. The United States has fallen again in the Index under Donald Trump, this time two places to 45th. A media-bashing enthusiast, Trump has referred to reporters “enemies of the people,” the term once used by Joseph Stalin.


3- The Department of Homeland Security is preparing to cancel the temporary residency permits of about 9,000 immigrants from Nepal. The Nepalis were granted temporary protected status (TPS) — allowing them to remain in the United States legally but immigration hard-liners in the Trump administration have pushed to eliminate TPS protections whenever possible.


4- A study from the U.S. National Registry of Exonerations showed that black Americans are about seven times more likely to be wrongfully convicted of murder than white Americans. When it comes to drug crimes, black Americans are about 12 times more likely to be wrongfully convicted than white people. Black male offenders received sentences on average 19.1 percent longer than those of "similarly situated" white male offenders.


5- Ineffective gun control has caused continuous growth of gun violence in the United States. A Pew Research Center survey showed that at least two-thirds of the surveyed Americans had lived in a household with a gun at some point in their lives. Seventy-three percent of the homicides for which the FBI received weapons data in 2016 involved the use of firearms.


6- After a difficult, monthlong journey from Central America to the US-Mexico border, dozens of asylum-seeking migrants are vowing to remain outside an immigration processing center until "every last one" is admitted into the country.


7- A news website covering the US state of New Jersey reported that a “national policy” allows the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) to monitor “non-active military members” it believes are at a “high risk” – apparently, of embracing “extremist” views and committing violent offenses. The article described the potentially related case of a Muslim veteran in the state who has endured multiple invasive visits and calls from US authorities over the last four years for reasons that remain unexplained. They had obtained documents from the US Air Force discussing the policy and highlighting the perpetrators of the San Bernardino and Pulse Nightclub shootings as examples of “homegrown violent extremists” – even though none of those perpetrators had served in the military. However, they all identified as Muslim, pointing to larger concerns that any monitoring may be disproportionately focused on that group. It may also discourage people from fully exercising their freedoms of expression and religion.


8- Since Trump took office, the number of Muslim refugees who have been admitted to the United States has fallen by ninety-one per cent. Visas issued to immigrants from majority-Muslim countries have declined by twenty-six per cent, with temporary visas falling by about a third. The Administration is sending a message “Don’t come here. We don’t want you.” With some twenty-two million people displaced, the world is in the midst of the worst refugee crisis since the Second World War. Almost a quarter of those refugees are Syrians, a population that the President has said he wants to protect.


9- Donald Trump announced via Twitter that he was nominating Gina Haspel to become the next Director of the Central Intelligence Agency (CIA). The nomination raises serious human rights concerns because Gina Haspel is alleged to have been involved in a program of secret detention operated by the CIA between 2002 and 2008. Amnesty International has called on President Trump to withdraw his nomination of Gina Haspel pending investigation into her alleged role in crimes under international law. The risk for human rights posed by this situation is clear. Without transparency and full accountability for past human rights violations, their future recurrence becomes more likely.


10- The US Defense Department released its Annual Report on Sexual Assault in the Military, which shows that service member reporting of sexual assault increased by about 10 percent in fiscal year 2017. The report for fiscal 2017 says the department received 6,769 reports of sexual assault involving service members as either victims or subjects of criminal investigation, a 9.7 percent increase over the 6,172 reports made in fiscal 2016.

 

 

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