‘Secretary of State Mike Pompeo delivered a divisive speech on Thursday calling for the United States to ground its human rights policy more prominently in religious liberty and property rights.
Mr. Pompeo’s speech, at the National Constitution Center in Philadelphia, came as he announced the release of a report created by a panel he commissioned last year to suggest how American human rights policy could better reflect the “nation’s founding principles.”
“It’s important for every American, and for every American diplomat, to recognize how our founders understood unalienable rights,” Mr. Pompeo said. “Foremost among these rights are property rights and religious liberty.”
Human rights scholars have criticized Mr. Pompeo’s panel since its inception, noting it was filled with conservatives who were intent on promoting views against abortion and marriage equality. Critics also warned that it sidestepped the State Department’s internal bureau responsible for promoting human rights abroad.
Experts have said that Mr. Pompeo’s efforts to prioritize religion in particular above other ideals in American diplomacy could reverse the country’s longstanding belief that “all rights are created equal” and embolden countries that persecute same-sex couples or deny women access to reproductive health services for religious reasons….’
— via The New York Times