Recap of Days 8&9 of CSW63
The negotiations have been very slow going. Last night they were only on page 15 of a 40 page document. Tonight they enter into the final evening of negotiations.
If they are still unable to come to a consensus on the proposed text, then a Chair’s text will be provided. The Chair’s text is a document that has been handcrafted by the Chair themselves. Usually the number of controversial references decreases significantly but it is never in our favour.
The past couple days have been graced by some very striking events – powerful moments of reason, truth and clarity on very controversial topics. Two of these were hosted by the Holy See. The first addressed the dominance of gender ideology in modern culture. It called attention to the world’s inability to provide a concrete definition of what it means to be a woman. In today’s world, gender identity theories and ideologies have radically altered our perception of truths that used to be self-evident.
The unfortunate effect that this has had on politics is that biological women – real women – are being displaced, in favour of men appearing as women. Every ideology has a champion and these champions use lawsuits to advance their cause. We cannot allow ideology to redefine who we are.
The second event hosted by the Holy See in the last two days was on the occasion of the celebration of Down Syndrome Awareness day. Featuring a panelist who herself had Down Syndrome, the event was extremely moving and had many both in tears and on their feet in applause. The overall message of the panel can best be summarised by Karen Gaffney, who was the first woman with Down Syndrome to complete a relay swim of the English Channel. She says: “Down Syndrome is a life worth living, a life worth choosing and a life worth saving.” Karen went on to explain that, contrary to what many might believe, Down Syndrome is not incompatible with life, it is what life is all about and people with Down Syndrome have so much to offer, so much to achieve, and so much to become. To the parents that may have just received the news that their baby will have Down Syndrome, Rick Smith had this to day: “Being the parent of a child with Down Syndrome is like reading a classic novel I never knew I wanted to read.”
The CLC delegates will remain at the UN for the entirety of negotiations tonight. It is important that we stay present to not only be available for consultations and to lobby the delegates, but to bear witness to the fact that the pro-life cause is still here and going strong. Sometimes our presence speaks louder than our words.
For more on CLC's work during the 63rd Commission on the Status of Women, read: