In a recent speech, Secretary of State Michael Pompeo said that he considers certain human rights unnecessary or even superfluous. Although his office declined to specifically say which ones — denying that he wants to curtail any U.S. civil rights — Pompeo has long spoken against LGBTQ right and reproductive freedom, leading some to speculate that those are the ones he meant.
Pompeo made the comments while speaking at Kansas State University’s Landon Lecture Series. Bloomberg.com elaborates on Pompeo’s comments:
“From time to time have framed pet causes as fights for rights to bypass the normal process by which political ends are achieved,” Pompeo said Friday at Kansas State University. “This is an imperfect analogy, but the thirteenth ice cream cone isn’t as good as the first one was. And with respect to unalienable rights, more, per se, is not always better.”
The speech … hit a theme Pompeo has made a centerpiece of his time as America’s top diplomat — that certain “unalienable rights” such as life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness, have been diluted by political interest groups at home and corrupt regimes overseas.
Pompeo is no friend to LGBTQ rights. He opposed the repeal of the anti-gay military ban known as “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell,” he called the U.S. Supreme Court ruling legalizing marriage equality “a shocking abuse of power” that “flies in the face of centuries of shared understanding of our Constitution,” he introduced legislation to give religious people a “license to discriminate,” he opposed reauthorizing the Violence Against Women Act due to language expanding the law to cover LGBTQ people and he canceled a planned speech at the CIA about diversity and LGBTQ rights.
In August 2018, Pompeo led a U.S. Ministerial to Advance Religious Freedom “to combat religious persecution and discrimination” in which Mick Mulvaney, Director of the Office of Management and Budget, said that America will no longer pressure African nations to repeal their anti-LGBTQ laws, specifically ones in which imprison and kill queer people, because such laws are an example of “religious freedom.”