The globalists and liberal internationalists among us who frequently invoke the authority or consensus of the “international community” should read the United Nations–supported International Commission of Jurists’ (ICJ) March 2023 report on “Principles for a Human Rights-Based Approach to Criminal Law Proscribing Conduct Associated with Sex, Reproduction, Drug Use, HIV, Homelessness and Poverty.” Under the guise of seeking to remedy “hostility, exclusion, inequality, discrimination and marginalization of individuals and groups,” the report expressly calls for the decriminalization and normalization of sex between adults and “consenting” minors. The slippery slope of the sexual revolution has hit rock bottom. Woke ideology has not just defined deviancy down (in the memorable phrase of Daniel Patrick Moynihan), it seeks to eliminate deviancy from our lexicon.
There may be nothing that is more deviant and more destructive than adults who sexually abuse minors. U.S. federal law and most state laws severely punish adult offenders who sexually exploit minors. Under federal laws, the producers of child pornography, for example, face a mandatory minimum of 15 years in prison. Adults who receive and distribute child pornography face at least five years in federal prison and usually much greater prison time under federal sentencing guidelines. Adults who engage in the sex trafficking of minors face at least 10 to 15 years in prison and can be sentenced to up to life in prison for such conduct — even if the minor “consents” to work as a prostitute, or what the report calls a “sex worker.” And adults who use interstate facilities to persuade or entice minors to engage in illegal sexual activities face at least 10 years and up to life in prison.
Virtually every civilized society criminalizes such behavior. And while the “age of consent” for minors to lawfully engage in sex with adults varies, the ICJ report makes no distinction between 17-year-olds and 10-year-olds. It states that “sexual conduct involving persons below the domestically prescribed minimum age of consent to sex must be applied in a non-discriminatory manner.” The enforcement of criminal laws, the report continues, “may not be linked to the … age of consent to marriage.” The criminal laws “should reflect the rights and capacity of persons under 18 years of age to make decisions about engaging in sexual conduct and their right to be heard in matters concerning them.” The ICJ report recognizes the “evolving capacities and progressive autonomy [of] persons under 18 years of age” to make decisions about sex for themselves.
The implications of the ICJ report are that persons under age 18 — the report does not establish any age limit for “consenting minors” — can consent to being victims of child pornography producers, sex traffickers, and pedophiles because their “evolving capacities and progressive autonomy” provide them with the ability to make their own decisions about sexual activity. Under ICJ human rights “principles,” the adult “groomers” of children need not worry about criminal prosecution. The 40-year-old pedophile who wants to have sex with 12- to 14-year-old girls (or boys) would have a field day.
The list of endorsers and supporters of the ICJ report includes judges and justices from many countries, law professors from Canada and the United States, human rights lawyers, UN officials, and others. And the report includes other woke enthusiasms. “Criminal law may not proscribe abortion” under any circumstances, according to the report. “Abortion must be taken entirely out of the purview of the criminal law,” it says. Presumably, former Philadelphia abortionist and murderer Kermit Gosnell would be a free man if the ICJ report became law in the United States. It glorifies prostitution as “sex work.” It recommends the decriminalization of all drug use and the provision of equipment and goods relating to personal drug use, with no exceptions — this as fentanyl and other opioids emerge as the leading cause of death among adults between the ages of 18 and 45. The report also calls for the decriminalization of urinating and defecating in public places. San Francisco, here we come.
That so many “eminent” jurists and lawyers endorse and support the ICJ report means that, in the immortal words of Richard Weaver, “we approach a condition in which we shall be amoral without the capacity to perceive it and degraded without means to measure our descent.”