Start calling and don’t drop our guards call to stop from moving forward.

July 23, 2013 § Leave a comment

July 23, 2013

All’s Quiet (Only) On the Front

Perhaps you have heard of the proverbial duck that sits peacefully on the surface of the water even in the flood – but under the surface, he is paddling furiously. Right now, we are that duck.

A couple of months ago we alerted you to the possibility –nay, the likelihood – that the Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities (CRPD) would return to the Senate Foreign Relations Committee within weeks. Proponents were committed to seeing it not only reintroduced in the committee, but adopted by the full Senate, before the July 26 anniversary of the signing of the Americans with Disabilities Act.

But the CRPD has yet to arrive. July 26 is poised to come and go with nothing more than an editorial by Secretary of State Kerry using the same tired (and false) arguments that we heard in the Senate last year. Proponents remain vocal, but there is no action on Capitol Hill.

Things remain quiet on the surface. So it looks like we have gotten a rest.

The truth, however, is quite the opposite. This calm has cost lots of hard work by ParentalRights.org and our allies; we have been “paddling frantically below the surface,” and we are slowly turning the tide on this issue.

You may recall that last year the treaty was aggressively pushed upon our nation with very short notice. Proponents of the treaty had already enlisted hundreds of organizations to support them, and they had scripted a massive misinformation campaign with Senate leaders in the key speaking roles. We had one constitutional scholar, several concerned pro-family allies, and the truth. By a miracle, (and due in large part to your valiant efforts through phone calls, letters, and talking with others) the treaty fell 5 votes short of ratification back in December.

This year, things are different. Yes, they have Secretary Kerry’s editorial. They still have Senate leaders and their same scripted fiction.

But we have a powerful speech from Senator Orrin Hatch in the Senate last week. (Read it here!) And former Senator John Kyl recently wrote a Foreign Affairsarticle decrying the threats of this treaty, too. (More on that here.) The scholarship is finally coming out, and it is on our side.

No wonder proponents haven’t even gotten a hearing yet. While many senators still support the treaty, they don’t want to face another defeat. Some will hesitate to bring it back until they know they have the votes to pass it.

Meanwhile, we and our allies are shining a light on the treaty – educating senators, their staffs, organizations, and private citizens about the dangers to American sovereignty and parental rights. And the longer we can delay CRPD’s arrival in the Senate, the more we are able to accomplish toward preventing it altogether.

That is not to say we won’t see it come up again. As intent as its proponents and Senate champions are, we must expect that it will be back this year. And they could still muster the votes they need to win. But with August recess approaching, it is unlikely we will see it in the Senate before September.

That said, we need your help. While there is nothing exciting about watching a duck float (so to speak), we are using a lot of energy and resources to preserve this “golden silence” in the Senate. We must make this August recess an opportunity to recharge so that we can be ready to defeat the CRPD when the silence is broken.

Action Items

1. Gather friends and family and plan a day to visit your senators in their district offices while they are in the state this August. Call their district office today and line up an appointment. Tell them you will bring a small group and ask for 10-15 minutes to talk with your senator about parental rights.

To find your senator’s contact information, visit parentalrights.org/states and click on your state. Then click on “website” below your senators’ names.

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