Many believe that international human rights law is one of our greatest moral achievements. But there is little evidence that it is effective. A radically different approach is long overdue
And yet it is hard to avoid the conclusion that governments continue to violate human rights with impunity. Why, for example, do more than 150 countries (out of 193 countries that belong to the UN) engage in torture? Why has the number of authoritarian countries increased in the last several years? Why do women remain a subordinate class in nearly all countries of the world? Why do children continue to work in mines and factories in so many countries?
The truth is that human rights law has failed to accomplish its objectives. There is little evidence that human rights treaties, on the whole, have improved the wellbeing of people.