A report on human rights in the United States in 2016 was published Thursday, once again uncovering the contradictory and hypocritical nature of a nation that styles itself as a "judge of human rights."
Wielding "the baton of human rights," the United States has long-busied itself casting blame for human rights abuses on any number of countries, while seemingly refusing to take a minute to reflect on the horrific human rights situation in its own country. The nation's human rights problems are a litany of high crime rates, widening income gaps, deteriorating race relations and corporate money polluting its political process.
With 693 prisoners per 100,000 of the national population, the United States had the second highest incarceration rate in the world. Last year saw a total of 58,125 gun incidents of violence nationwide, including 385 mass shootings, leaving 15,039 dead and 30,589 injured. The proportion of adults who have full-time jobs in the country is at its lowest since 1983, while one in seven Americans, at least 45 million people, live in poverty.
Not only has it not got its own house in order, worse still, the United States's has repeatedly and aggressively trampled on the human rights in other countries, particularly the Middle East. From Aug. 8, 2014 to Dec. 19, 2016, it launched 7,258 air strikes in Iraq and 5,828 in Syria, causing 733 incidents with an estimated number of civilian deaths between 4,568 and 6,127. It seems the old adage that those who live in glass houses should not throw stones, means little to America.
It is not only the skeletons in its own cupboards that make Washington's portrayal of itself as a vehement human rights watchdog ridiculous and hypocritical. Its selective ignorance of real and continual human rights progress by a host of countries throughout the world, as well its flagrantly biased view on human rights, are equally risible.
On March 3, the U.S. State Department grandly rolled out its annual report on global human rights, as ever, pointing the finger at China and a number of other countries. Not surprisingly the United States, again, sees it fit to meddle in the internal affairs of other countries in the name of human rights.
Making unfounded and irresponsible accusations about human rights in China, the United States turns a blind eye to the fact that China, as the world's most populous country, has fulfilled the basic living needs of its 1.3 billion-plus people and lifted over 700 million people out of poverty.
Protection of the right to development for all citizens has always been the top priority for the Chinese government.
Among other efforts, China has implemented a series of laws and regulations to protect its people, especially for ethnic minorities, women, children, senior citizens and people with disabilities.
China's view on human rights -- attaching great importance to the right to development -- goes in line with requirements by the United Nations.
Addressing a session of the UN Human Rights Council in late February, the UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres called for more to be done to ensure equal attention to economic, social and cultural rights.
The 2030 Agenda provided an ideal platform to demonstrate the commitment to all human rights, and at its core was the right to development, Guterres said.
However, to serve its own political agenda, a certain long-time human rights preacher denies that the right to development is an inalienable human right, and instead unilaterally stresses political rights while ignoring economic, social and cultural rights.
As a community of shared future, countries around the world should remember that human rights for all can only be improved through dialogue and cooperation on the basis of mutual respect, equality and trust, not boorish confrontation, prejudice and finger pointing.