Not Satire: Jesse Jackson Wants the UN to Investigate Martin Shooting

CNS News
July 18, 2013

"Y'all niggas be trippin'." --Jesse Jackson
“Y’all niggas be trippin’.” –Jesse Jackson

The Rev. Jesse Jackson, founder and president of the Rainbow Push Coalition, wants the United Nations’ human rights watchdog brought into the debate over the shooting of Trayvon Martin.

Various parts of the U.N. human rights system have in the past weighed in on the Feb. 2012 shooting of the 17-year-old, criticizing Florida’s “stand your ground” law and, in one case, calling for “reparation for the victims.”

But Jackson is proposing an investigation by the U.N.’s top human rights apparatus, the Human Rights Council (HRC), a controversial body whose ranks include regimes with poor human rights records, including some of America’s most vocal critics.

A jury late Saturday found former neighborhood watch volunteer George Zimmerman not guilty of second-degree murder and manslaughter relating to Martin’s death.

Among the many and ongoing reactions to the acquittal, Jackson called in a statement for “a national investigation of the racial context that led to Trayvon Martin’s slaying.”

“Congress must act,” he added. “And it’s time to call on the United Nations Human Rights Commission for an in-depth investigation of whether the U.S. is upholding its obligations under international human rights laws and treaties.” (The Human Rights Commission no longer exists; it was replaced by the HRC in 2006.)

Every U.N. member state undergoes a HRC “universal periodic review” every four years, and the next one examining the U.S. record is not scheduled until May 2015.

But governments and non-governmental organizations have many other opportunities during regular HRC sessions in Geneva to raise issues pertaining to specific countries – as the NAACP did last year in drawing the council’s attention to what it called “voter-suppression” measures like voter-ID laws.

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