Maternity as a social function
Update: I just found some interesting proclamations this treaty has brought about against nations which have ratified it, including recommending the legalization of prostitution and anything which depicts women in a traditional role as mother.

This is the UN's take on some of these accusations. (I occasionally make some attempt at "balance.") I understand that this does not give the UN any ability to enforce anything, but our Constitution is set up such that treaties become the law of the land, unless it directly violates the Constitution. Why would this not occur in this instance? And if the fact that the UN cannot enforce this is a positive, why ratify in the first place?

And if you are against this treaty, here is a petition you can sign.

Back to the original post...

I was just looking over the Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Discrimination Against Women (CEDAW), which is another one of those treaties hanging around that we have signed but never ratified. has been around for awhile. President Carter signed it back in 1980. The thought that we now have an international organization which seeks to "modify the social and cultural patterns of conduct of men and women..." bothers me a little, no matter what the goal is (Article 5a). Does that mean that "blond jokes" will be illegal under international law?

Can anyone tell me what this means, exactly?
To ensure that family education includes a proper understanding of maternity as a social function and the recognition of the common responsibility of men and women in the upbringing and development of their children, it being understood that the interest of the children is the primordial consideration in all cases.
That sounds good, but what do they mean when they define maternity as a social function? Wikipedia says a social function is "the contribution made by any phenomenon to a larger system of which the phenomenon is a part." So maternity is a contribution to society? Maybe I'm just a little too suspicious, but I question the wisdom of having the United Nations tell anyone what the proper view of maternity is. The introduction gives perhaps a little more information about what this means, exactly, and how it is to be interpreted.
For example, it advocates, in article 5, "a proper understanding of maternity as a social function," demanding fully shared responsibility for child-rearing by both sexes. Accordingly, provisions for maternity protection and child-care, proclaimed as essential rights and are incorporated into all areas of the Convention, whether dealing with employment, family law, health care or education. Society's obligation extends to offering social services, especially child-care facilities, that allow individuals to combine family responsibilities with work and participation in public life.
Affordable child care is now an essential right. As is the right to employment. To health care. To an abortion. To education. And we will need to add a new component to No Child Left Behind to make sure that we educate our children to understand this properly.

Oh, I may as well end with my favorite blond joke, just in case they are deemed to be culturally discriminatory toward women:
Q. Why was the blond fired from the M&M factory?
A. She kept throwing out all the W's.
Related Tags: , , , ,