In a speech at the United Nations (UN) last week, veteran pro-life United States (US) Congressman Christopher Smith (R-NJ) addressed delegates from over 30 countries and urged them to respect the universal right to life as set forth in the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, reminding them that the right to life should extend to unborn children.
Congressman Smith, the keynote speaker at a briefing organized by Focus on the Family, urged delegates to resist the push by UN agencies and non-governmental organizations to “legalize, facilitate and expand access to abortion” in their home countries.
Smith characterized the fight to defend the right to life, “especially for unborn children and others at risk,” as “the greatest human rights struggle in the world.” Smith blasted abortion as “violence against children, a pernicious form of child abuse” which is being “falsely marketed as choice, women’s empowerment, a human right or health care.”
Congressman Smith took special aim at the concept of “safe abortion,” a term that has become increasing prevalent at the UN in recent years, calling it “the ultimate oxymoron.” Painting a graphic picture for delegates, Smith argued that “child dismemberment, forced premature expulsion from the safety of the womb, chemical poisoning or deliberate starvation can never, ever be construed to be benign, compassionate or safe.”
Smith warned delegates of upcoming threats to the right to life, stating that every UN meeting “has become a battleground” and that next month’s Commission on the Status of Women meeting will be no exception. Additionally, Smith warned delegates that “many of your government officials have been or will soon be scolded by pro-abortion “experts” at periodic [Commission on the Elimination of All Forms of Discrimination Against Women] reviews in an attempt to “persuade” you to abandon your protections for women and children from the violence of abortion.”
Challenging the delegates, Smith said, “I encourage you to resist and push back.” The congressman continued, “The voiceless desperately need friends and advocates in high places. They need you.”
After Smith’s speech, one delegate in attendance told the Friday Fax that “there is no doubt factually that the unborn child is a full human being and so protected by the Universal Declaration of Human Rights.” The delegate praised Smith’s message, stating that “the very reason the United Nations was set up after two world wars was to ensure peace and the protection of the human person from unjust aggression and abuse of his rights.” The delegate rhetorically asked, “Who is more vulnerable and denied his rights than an innocent, voiceless human being?”
Congressman Smith has long been involved in UN issues. During the Clinton years, Smith regularly intervened during UN negotiations, including the five year reviews of both the International Conference on Population and Development (Cairo +5) and the Beijing women’s conference (Beijing +5). Congressman Smith also placed strategic planning documents from the Center for Reproductive Rights into the Congressional Record. Given to him by the Catholic Family & Human Rights Institute (C-FAM), publisher of the Friday Fax, the documents exposed the pro-abortion group’s long-term stealth legal strategy.