WHO Tells Governments they must Provide Abortion and Sex Change*
The World Health Organization jumped into the culture wars this week and issued a report telling every country to remove restrictions on abortions – including for adolescents – provide sex change surgery, and remove criminal restrictions on sexual conduct such as extramarital sex, prostitution, and homosexual behaviour.
WHO’s controversial policy prescriptions, such as sex counseling and advocating cheap and unsafe abortion, have been previously exposed by the Friday Fax. However, this report was hailed as “major and long-awated [sic]” by an Australian intersex advocacy group because it “contains a specific section on intersex people, as well as other stigmatized social groups including lesbians and gay men, and transgender people.”
The World Health Organization (WHO) – which admitted its lack of competence exacerbated the recent Ebola epidemic that cost over 11,000 lives – is spending attention and resources to promote sexual rights. This little-noticed report comes as people are reeling from news of homosexual and transgender activism – including Olympic athlete Bruce Jenner’s announcement that he is a she, and schools allowing gender-confused boys to use girls’ bathrooms.
The report calls on governments to ensure
“comprehensive sexuality education” for young people in order to impart the “knowledge, skills and values to make informed and responsible choices about their sexual lives.”
These “values” are contrasted with traditional concepts of morality, which are characterized as negative. WHO also wants governments to limit the right of health care providers to decline from providing abortion or abortifacient drugs or assisted reproductive technologies.
WHO concedes that
“all legal systems use criminal law to deter, prosecute and punish harmful behaviour, and to protect individuals from harm.”
Yet it does not acknowledge that “consensual sexual conduct occurring between competent persons” could itself be harmful, even with high standards of available health care.
The phrases “sexual and reproductive health” and “reproductive rights” have appeared in UN documents since the Cairo conference on population and development in 1994. But the formulation “sexual rights” – which WHO, an agency of the UN, relies on – has repeatedly been rejected by countries, largely because it is considered to encompass sexual orientation and gender identity, which would be in conflict with the laws of many UN member states.
WHO equates sexual health with unrestrained sexual license by stating that “[f]or sexual health to be attained and maintained, the sexual rights of all persons must be respected, protected and fulfilled.”
The authors credited with the overall development of WHO’s report admit elsewhere “there is currently no formal political international consensus on the term ‘sexual rights’.” They credit WHO alongside the International Planned Parenthood Federation (IPPF) with generating an “understanding that sexual rights are grounded in universal human rights.”
WHO qualifies its own definition of “sexual rights” with the disclaimer that it “does not represent an official WHO position and should not be used or quoted as such.”
IPPF refers to “sexual rights” as an “evolving set of entitlements” which “cannot be ignored any longer” and includes abortion and forms of sexual expression prohibited by law in many countries.
Many of WHO’s arguments on legalizing abortion and establishing special protections for sexual orientation and gender identity are based on the opinions of UN treaty monitoring committees, which frequently go beyond the treaty agreements.