HOUSTON, April 23 (Xinhua) -- The United States should not cover up its own human rights issues by focusing on human rights practices of other countries, an American professor told Xinhua on Monday.
Commenting on the Country Report on Human Rights Practices released by the U.S. Department of State last week, Peter J Li, associate professor of East Asia politics and international relations at the University of Houston-Downtown, said by focusing on human rights practices of other countries, the report has succeeded in covering up worsening human rights violations in the United States.
Talking about the U.S. is facing a more serious human rights violation situation. Li gave an example that religious freedom in the U.S. has been under attack.
"President Trump's travel related policies unfairly target people from Muslim countries in such a way that America's core value of respect for religious freedom is becoming a laughing stock," he said.
"Bias and discrimination against people of different sexual orientation, different cultural background and political views have never been so pronounced among certain groups in the U.S.," he continued, adding that "the U.S. is once again a divided country."
The professor believed there are several reasons for issuing annual Country Report on Human Rights Practices as it serves to remind the world of America's moral authority in promoting its version of human rights and individual freedoms.
"The Report is no doubt a 'stick' in the hands of the U.S. government to censure other countries it sees as unruly or defiant with regard to the American version of individual freedoms," he said.
Li argued that it is time for the U.S. State Department to include human rights practices of the U.S. in the annual Report so that the U.S. knows where to improve and where the U.S. has a lot to catch up.
"The Report cannot be a 'carrot' and 'stick' for other countries. It has to serve as a warning for the U.S., particularly the chief of the U.S. administration," said Li.