Human rights in U.S. see major setbacks

2023-03-29 Editor : Li Yan ECNS App Download

Human rights in the United States experienced major setbacks last year, with money politics, racial discrimination, gun violence and police brutality on the rise, according to a report released on Tuesday.

The Report on Human Rights Violations in the United States in 2022, issued by the State Council Information Office, outlined the regression of human rights in the U.S., including a dysfunctional civil rights protection system, hollowed-out U.S.-style electoral democracy, growing racial discrimination and inequality, and the worsening situation of women's and children's rights.

Despite labeling itself a "human rights defender", the U.S. faces chronic issues such as money politics, racial discrimination, gun violence and wealth polarization, according to the report.

It also noted the extreme regression of human rights legislation and justice in the country, further undermining the basic rights and freedoms of its people.

The U.S. has a history of extreme violence, with people facing threats from both violent crime and violent law enforcement, and their safety is far from guaranteed, the report added, citing official data and media reports.

Gun violence has become an "American disease", with more than 80,000 people killed or injured by gun violence last year, the third consecutive year on record in which the U.S. has experienced more than 600 mass shootings, figures showed, it added.

The latest shooting in the U.S. occurred on Monday at the Covenant School in Nashville, Tennessee, when a heavily armed former student killed six people, including an 8-year-old and two 9-year-olds.

School shootings have become alarmingly common in the U.S., where the proliferation of firearms has soared in recent years. There have been 129 mass shootings — defined as incidents in which four or more people were shot or killed — so far this year, according to data from the Gun Violence Archive.

Racism is also on the rise in the U.S., with ethnic minorities suffering widespread discrimination. A total of 81 percent of Asian Americans say violence against Asian communities is surging. African Americans are 2.78 times more likely to be killed by police than whites, according to the report.

American-style democracy has lost its popular support. The cost of elections in the U.S. has soared again, with cumulative spending on the 2022 midterm elections exceeding $16.7 billion, the report said.

"Dark money" donations manipulate U.S. elections furtively, and political polarization and social fragmentation make it difficult for the country to reach a democratic consensus. Sixty-nine percent of Americans believe their style of democracy is at "risk of collapse" and 86 percent of American voters say it faces "very serious threats".

"There is a general public disillusionment with American-style democracy," said the report.

The report also pointed out that the protection of the rights of women and children in the U.S. suffered a major setback last year. Women's abortion rights were violated, child poverty rates remained disproportionately high, and illegal use of child labor was still rampant.


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