Coming soon … Human rights for birds, bees and trees

With all the trouble spots in the world these days – not to mention the many countries whose human rights records are considerably less than stellar – you’d think that the United Nations would have better things to do than to be worrying about “rights” for birds bees and trees. But … wait for it folks … according to the National Post Bolivia – not exactly a country that jumps to mind when considering exemplary models of, well, anything really – is about to attempt to foist on the world a mirror of its own legislation:

Human rights proposed for birds,bees,trees

Bolivia will this month table a draft United Nations treaty giving “Mother Earth” the same rights as humans -having just passed a domestic law that does the same for bugs, trees and all other natural things in the South American country.

The bid aims to have the UN recognize the Earth as a living entity that humans have sought to “dominate and exploit” -to the point that the “well-being and existence of many beings” is now threatened.

The wording may yet evolve, but the general structure is meant to mirror Bolivia’s Law of the Rights of Mother Earth, which Bolivian President Evo Morales enacted in January.

That document speaks of the country’s natural resources as “blessings,” and grants the Earth a series of specific rights that include rights to life, water and clean air; the right to repair livelihoods affected by human activities, and the right to be free from pollution.

No doubt the U.K.’s Polly Higgins will be right alongside Bolivia’s president Morales – beating the drum for her proposed ecocide resolution as well.

And I’m quite certain that this “treaty” will include severe penalties for those who’ve been peddling all the bird-killing windmills which have been bleeding taxpayers and blighting landscapes far and wide. Not.

But this should be right up the alley of the United Nations Environmental Program’s latest acronymic offspring, the IPBES.

Amazing. Simply amazing.

5 thoughts on “Coming soon … Human rights for birds, bees and trees

    • I agree completely, Prof Miao, especially about the “frightening lunacy”. But at the time of posting, I was in <understatement mode>

  1. It is difficult to convey just how fundamentally irrational the mindset behind “ecocide” and the proposed “Mother Earth” UN treaty is. Up to now, if a specific animal, plant or habitat was considered worthy of protection, it was because humans deemed it valuable (not only for its economic worth; this could also be for aesthetic or spiritual reasons, for example) and not because that specific animal, plant or habitat had some sort of intrinsic, perpetual right to exist.

    Natural history tells us that habitats are constantly changing, and that species are always adapting, evolving or becoming extinct. Jungles have given way to ice sheets, then to oak forests, then to meadows and arable land. Which was the correct or lawful habitat? When the world became warmer and woolly mammoths died out, thousands of years ago, was that a crime, and are the creatures that thrive in today’s warmer climate profiting illegally from past “ecocide”, or do they now have rights that supersede the rights of the mammoth?

    Here in the UK, grey squirrels are supplanting red squirrels (thus threatening their inalienable right to exist, according to this way of thinking), but black squirrels are now starting to move in on the greys – so which of these species (or sub-species) are the correct and lawful inhabitants of English parks and woodlands, and which are the illegal and ecocidal interlopers (also, how exactly should the innocent be protected and the guilty punished)?

    If this weird and woolly legislation is adopted by the UN, or indeed anywhere outside Bolivia, I’m wondering just what sort of insane, surreal court cases might then ensue!

    • Well said, Alex. But, you know, it’s getting weirder and woollier by the day! Just came across [h/t curiousgeorge via WUWT] an item on FoxNews that Van Jones (Obama’s former Czar of all jobs green):

      has found a new calling: helping to push for a new, global architecture of environmental law that would give Mother Nature the same rights status as humans.

      The new movement is almost certain to be showcased at a U.N.-sponsored global summit on “sustainable development” to take place in Rio de Janeiro in May 2012, when similar issues of “global environmental governance” are a major focus of attention.

      Jones is taking up the challenge as one of the newest board members of an obscure San Francisco New Age-style organization known as the Pachamama Alliance, which has been creating a global movement to make human rights for Mother Nature an international reality — complete with enforceable laws — by 2014. The Rio summit will create an important midpoint for that campaign.

      Not to mention the fortuitous arrival on the peer-reviewed journal scene of the Journal of Animal Ethics [see my recent post for all some of the mind boggling details].

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