Poland to Withdraw from ‘Ideological’ Gender Theory Treaty

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WOJTEK RADWANSKI/AFP via Getty Images

Poland has announced it will withdraw from the Istanbul Convention, a treaty which requires that governments actively promote gender theory through the media and education system.

Justice Minister Zbigniew Ziobro told a news conference that his ministry would begin withdrawing from the treaty, titled — arguably misleadingly — the Istanbul Convention on Preventing and Combating Violence Against Women and Domestic Violence.

While far-left protesters claimed the move was aimed at legitimising physical violence against women, Ziobro said problems with the treaty eroded parents’ rights by necessitating far-left social policies be promoted to children. He explained that the convention “contains elements of an ideological nature, which we consider harmful”, Reuters reported him saying.

Deputy Justice Minister Michał Wójcik stated that the provisions of the convention centre on an ideology which is harmful “to the family, to marriage”, adding that marriage is between “a woman and a man, not some third, fourth or fifth sex”.

The ministers have drawn attention to aspects of the treaty which claim that domestic violence is a result of gender stereotyping. “…violence against women does not only result from alcoholism or certain pathologies … but also results from problems related to the stereotypical perception of gender,” remarked Dr Dorota Pudzianowska from the George Soros-sponsored Helsinki Foundation for Human Rights.

University of Swansea law professor, Andrew Tettenborn, has commented that the Istanbul Convention does nothing to protect females from domestic violence. Instead, it demands that all of society be dismantled and rebuilt around the idea that gender stereotypes are the cause of physical attacks on women.

According to Article 12 of the treaty, governments who sign up to the document must “take the necessary measures to promote changes in the social and cultural patterns of behaviour of women and men with a view to eradicating prejudices, customs, traditions and all other practices which are based on the idea of the inferiority of women or on stereotyped roles for women and men”.

Asking whether ordinary citizens in countries like Britain, where the government has signed the Istanbul Convention, “realise that their leaders have signed them up to support a mini-Cultural Revolution”, Tettenborn notes that there is “more than a whiff of totalitarianism” about the treaty’s requirements.

He writes:

Secondly, the [convention] requires government to intervene big-time in education and in addition lean on the media. One wonders whether the earnest and well-meaning supporters of ratification have ever looked closely at Article 14.

Under this, governments must at all educational levels from kindergarten to university take “necessary steps to include teaching material on issues such as equality between women and men, non-stereotyped gender roles, mutual respect, non-violent conflict resolution in interpersonal relationships, gender-based violence against women …”

This provision for the compulsory instilling of a thoroughly ideological position ought to worry anyone concerned with parental rights to educate children according to their own beliefs, not to mention the ability of communities to set up schools so as educate children within reason according to their norms. Equally alarming is the second part of the same article. All this must be governmentally promoted, not only in education, but in among other places the media: put another way, governments are told to pressure news and TV outlets to toe a particular ideological line. The implications for press freedom are plain for all to see.

Poland’s conservative president was re-elected earlier this month after promising to “defend children from LGBT ideology” in schools and to protect the interests of the family and the institution of marriage if given a second term.

Earlier this year Breitbart London reported that Hungary passed a declaration against signing the Istanbul Convention, for similar reasons to why Poland now plans to withdraw, including the treaty’s claim that gender is a “social construct” and its provisions to allow “gender-based asylum claims”.

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