Press Release ● Human and Civil Rights
For Immediate Release: 
December 9, 2005
Contact Info: 
Stacey Farnen Bernards
(202) 225 - 3130

WASHINGTON, D.C. – House Democratic Whip Steny Hoyer (MD) released the following statement today in observance of Human Rights Day, which will be observed tomorrow, December 10:

“On December 10, 1948, the United Nations General Assembly adopted the Universal Declaration of Human Rights.  The Declaration provides a valuable compass on how to respect and protect human rights – or as noted by Robert Kennedy it provides ‘principles which embody the collective hopes of men of good will around the globe.’ America was founded on these collective hopes, and adherence to our values is what has always made the United States a beacon of hope and freedom that inspires other nations. 

“It saddens me that the international community has failed to live up to its collective responsibility to ensure that human rights are respected around the world. We simply must do better. For example, the world community must redouble efforts to finally put an end to the genocidal slaughter of innocent men, women and children in Darfur, Sudan. 

“I applaud Senator John McCain (R-AZ) for his amendment to the FY2006 Department of Defense Authorization Act, and I fully agree that, as he stated, ‘American values should win against all others in any war of ideas, and we can’t let prisoner abuse tarnish our image.’ America’s national security is strongest when our honor and reputation are at their highest; the damage the Administration’s policies have done to our standing in their world is dangerous to our security.  The adoption of this amendment would be an important step in rebuilding America’s credibility and unequivocally expressing our values.”