Jimmy Carter: Why I believe the mistreatment of women is the number one human rights abuse

Jimmy Carter: Why I believe the mistreatment of women is the number one human rights abuse

As a matter of fact, I was trying to think about my career
since I left the White House, and the best example I have is a cartoon
in The New Yorker a couple of years ago. This little boy is looking up
at his father, and he says, “Daddy, when I grow up,
I want to be a former president.” (Laughter) Well, I have had a great blessing
as a former president, because I have had an access that very few other people
in the world have ever had to get to know so many people
around this whole universe. Not only am I familiar
with the 50 states in the United States, but also my wife and I have visited
more than 145 countries in the world, and the Carter Center has had full-time
programs in 80 nations on Earth. And a lot of times,
when we go into a country, we not only the meet
the king or the president, but we also meet the villagers who live
in the most remote areas of Africa. So our overall commitment
at the Carter Center is to promote human rights, and knowing the world as I do,
I can tell you without any equivocation that the number one abuse
of human rights on Earth is, strangely, not addressed quite often,
is the abuse of women and girls. (Applause) There are a couple of reasons for this
that I’ll mention to begin with. First of all is the misinterpretation
of religious scriptures, holy scriptures, in the Bible, Old Testament,
New Testament, Quran and so forth, and these have been misinterpreted by men
who are now in the ascendant positions in the synagogues and the churches
and in the mosques. And they interpret these rules
to make sure that women are ordinarily relegated
to a secondary position compared to men in the eyes of God. This is a very serious problem.
It’s ordinarily not addressed. A number of years ago, in the year 2000, I had been a Baptist,
a Southern Baptist for 70 years — I tell you, I still teach
Sunday school every Sunday; I’ll be teaching this Sunday as well — but the Southern Baptist Convention
in the year 2000 decided that women should play
a secondary position, a subservient position to men. So they issued an edict, in effect, that prevents women from being priests,
pastors, deacons in the church, or chaplains in the military, and if a woman teaches a classroom in a Southern Baptist seminary, they cannot teach if a boy is in the room, because you can find verses in the Bible, there’s over 30,000 verses in the Bible, that say that a woman shouldn’t
teach a man, and so forth. But the basic thing is the scriptures
are misinterpreted to keep men in an ascendant position. That is an all-pervasive problem, because men can exert that power and if an abusive husband or an employer,
for instance, wants to cheat women, they can say that if women
are not equal in the eyes of God, why should I treat them as equals myself? Why should I pay them equal pay
for doing the same kind of work? The other very serious blight that causes this problem
is the excessive resort to violence, and that is increasing
tremendously around the world. In the United States of America,
for instance, we have had an enormous increase
in abuse of poor people, mostly black people and minorities,
by putting them in prison. When I was in office
as governor of Georgia, one out of every 1,000 Americans
were in prison. Nowadays, 7.3 people
per 1,000 are in prison. That’s a sevenfold increase. And since I left the White House, there’s been an 800 percent increase
in the number of women who are black who are in prison. We also have
[one of the only countries] on Earth that still has the death penalty
that is a developed country. And we rank right alongside
the countries that are most abusive in all elements of human rights
in encouraging the death penalty. We’re in California now,
and I figured out the other day that California has spent
four billion dollars in convicting 13 people
for the death penalty. If you add that up, that’s 307 million
dollars it costs California to send a person to be executed. Nebraska this week just passed a law
abolishing the death penalty, because it costs so much. (Applause) So the resort to violence and abuse
of poor people and helpless people is another cause of the increase
in abuse of women. Let me just go down a very few
abuses of women that concern me most, and I’ll be fairly brief, because I have
a limited amount of time, as you know. One is genital mutilation. Genital mutilation is horrible
and not known by American women, but in some countries, many countries, when a child is born that’s a girl,
very soon in her life, her genitals are completely cut away
by a so-called cutter who has a razor blade and,
in a non-sterilized way, they remove the exterior parts
of a woman’s genitalia. And sometimes, in more extreme cases
but not very rare cases, they sew the orifice up so the girl
can just urinate or menstruate. And then later, when she gets married,
the same cutter goes in and opens the orifice up
so she can have sex. This is not a rare thing, although
it’s against the law in most countries. In Egypt, for instance, 91 percent of all the females
that live in Egypt today have been sexually mutilated in that way. In some countries,
it’s more than 98 percent of the women are cut that way
before they reach maturity. This is a horrible affliction on all women that live in those countries. Another very serious thing
is honor killings, where a family with misinterpretation,
again, of a holy scripture — there’s nothing in the Quran
that mandates this — will execute a girl in their family if she is raped or if she marries a man
that her father does not approve, or sometimes even if she
wears inappropriate clothing. And this is done by members
of her own family, so the family becomes murderers when the girl brings
so-called disgrace to the family. An analysis was done in Egypt
not so long ago by the United Nations and it showed that 75 percent
of these murders of a girl are perpetrated by the father,
the uncle or the brother, but 25 percent of the murders
are conducted by women. Another problem that we have in the world that relates to women
particularly is slavery, or human trafficking it’s called nowadays. There were about 12.5 million people
sold from Africa into slavery in the New World back in
the 19th century and the 18th century. There are 30 million people
now living in slavery. The United States Department of State
now has a mandate from Congress to give a report every year, and the State Department reports
that 800,000 people are sold across international borders
every year into slavery, and that 80 percent
of those sold are women, into sexual slavery. In the United States right this moment, 60,000 people are living
in human bondage, or slavery. Atlanta, Georgia, where
the Carter Center is located and where I teach at Emory University, they have between 200 and 300 women,
people sold into slavery every month. It’s the number one place
in the nation because of that. Atlanta has the busiest
airport in the world, and they also have a lot of passengers
that come from the Southern Hemisphere. If a brothel owner wants to buy a girl
that has brown or black skin, they can do it for 1,000 dollars. A white-skinned girl brings
several times more than that, and the average brothel owner in Atlanta
and in the United States now can earn about $35,000 per slave. The sex trade in Atlanta, Georgia, exceeds
the total drug trade in Atlanta, Georgia. So this is another very serious problem,
and the basic problem is prostitution, because there’s not
a whorehouse in America that’s not known by the local officials, the local policemen, or the chief
of police or the mayor and so forth. And this leads to one
of the worst problems, and that is that women are bought
increasingly and put into sexual slavery in all countries in the world. Sweden has got a good approach to it. About 15 to 20 years ago, Sweden
decided to change the law, and women are no longer prosecuted if they are in sexual slavery, but the brothel owners and the pimps
and the male customers are prosecuted, and — (Applause) —
prostitution has gone down. In the United States, we take
just the opposite position. For every male arrested
for illegal sex trade, 25 women are arrested
in the United States of America. Canada, Ireland, I’ve already said Sweden, France, and other countries are moving now
towards this so-called Swedish model. That’s another thing that can be done. We have two great institutions
in this country that all of us admire: our military and our great
university system. In the military, they are now analyzing
how many sexual assaults take place. The last report I got,
there were 26,000 sexual assaults that took place in the military — 26,000. Only 3,000, not much more than 1 percent,
are actually prosecuted, and the reason is that the commanding
officer of any organization — a ship like my submarine,
or a battalion in the Army or a company in the Marines — the commanding officer
has the right under law to decide whether to prosecute a rapist or not, and of course, the last thing they want
is for anybody to know that under their command,
sexual assaults are taking place, so they do not do it. That law needs to be changed. About one out of four girls
who enter American universities will be sexually assaulted
before she graduates, and this is now getting
a lot of publicity, partially because of my book,
but other things, and so 89 universities in America
are now condemned by the Department of Education
under Title IX because the officials of the universities
are not taking care of the women to protect them from sexual assault. The Department of Justice says
that more than half of the rapes on a college campus
take place by serial rapists, because outside of the university system, if they rape somebody,
they’ll be prosecuted, but when they get on a university campus,
they can rape with impunity. They’re not prosecuted. Those are the kinds of things
that go on in our society. Another thing that’s very serious
about the abuse of women and girls is the lack of equal pay for equal work, as you know. (Applause) And this is sometimes misinterpreted,
but for full-time employment, a woman in the United States now
gets 23 percent less than a man. When I became president,
the difference was 39 percent. So we’ve made some progress,
partially because I was president and so forth — (Applause) (Laughter) — but in the last 15 years,
there’s been no progress made, so it’s been just about 23
or 24 percent difference for the last 15 years. These are the kind of things that go on. If you take the Fortune 500 companies, 23 of them have women CEOs, out of 500, and those CEOs, I need not tell you, make less on an average than the other CEOs. Well, that’s what goes on in our country. Another problem with the United States is we are the most warlike
nation on Earth. We have been to war
with about 25 different countries since the Second World War. Sometimes, we’ve had soldiers
on the ground fighting. The other times,
we’ve been flying overhead dropping bombs on people. Other times, of course, now, we have
drones that attack people and so forth. We’ve been at war
with 25 different countries or more since the Second World War. There was four years,
I won’t say which ones, where we didn’t — (Applause) — we didn’t drop a bomb,
we didn’t launch a missile, we didn’t fire a bullet. But anyway, those kinds of things,
the resort to violence and the misinterpretation
of the holy scriptures are what causes, are the basic causes,
of abuse of women and girls. There’s one more basic cause
that I need not mention, and that is that in general,
men don’t give a damn. (Applause)
That’s true. The average man that might say,
I’m against the abuse of women and girls quietly accepts the privileged
position that we occupy, and this is very similar
to what I knew when I was a child, when separate but equal had existed. Racial discrimination, legally,
had existed for 100 years, from 1865 at the end of the War
Between the States, the Civil War, all the way up to the 1960s, when Lyndon Johnson got the bills passed for equal rights. But during that time,
there were many white people that didn’t think that
racial discrimination was okay, but they stayed quiet, because they enjoyed the privileges
of better jobs, unique access to jury duty, better schools, and everything else, and that’s the same thing
that exists today, because the average man
really doesn’t care. Even though they say, “I’m against
discrimination against girls and women,” they enjoy a privileged position. And it’s very difficult to get
the majority of men who control the university system, the majority of men that control
the military system, the majority of men that control
the governments of the world, and the majority of men that control
the great religions. So what is the basic thing
that we need to do today? I would say the best thing
that we could do today is for the women in the powerful nations like this one, and where you come from, Europe and so forth, who have influence
and who have freedom to speak and to act, need to take the responsibility
on yourselves to be more forceful in demanding an end to racial discrimination
against girls and women all over the world. The average woman in Egypt doesn’t have much to say
about her daughters getting genitally mutilated and so forth. I didn’t even go down
to detail about that. But I hope that out of this conference, that every woman here
will get your husbands to realize that these abuses on the college campuses
and the military and so forth and in the future job market, need to protect your daughters
and your granddaughters. I have 12 grandchildren,
four children, and 10 great-grandchildren, and I think often about them and about the plight that they
will face in America, not only if they lived in Egypt
or a foreign country, in having equal rights, and I hope that all of you will join me in being a champion for women
and girls around the world and protect their human rights. Thank you very much. (Applause)

100 thoughts on “Jimmy Carter: Why I believe the mistreatment of women is the number one human rights abuse”

  1. 4:05 "We also have the only country on earth that still has the death penalty that is a developed country".
    Not true. Japan is a developed country and has the death penalty. There is no hard and fast way of defining what is a developed country, but you could make an argument that South Korea and Singapore are developed countries, both of which have the death penalty.

  2. It is sad that a lot of men just don't care about this issue, but I do. I am planning to work on women's empowerment research and education for my future career.

  3. Jimmy Carter advocates the solution to the problem of the mistreatment of women and girls that women must demand an end to discrimination and to convince the men in their lives to do the same because the men won't give up their privilege on their own.

  4. The mistreatment of MEN isn't addressed like at all almost!
    Yes girls and women are more mistreated but wow the amt
    of male mistreatment is barely acknowledged if at all, Peace

  5. Why does everyone think that Jimmy Carter was a bad president? And lots of people think Reagan was like god for US.
    P. S. I don't live in US, that is why I ask, maybe you have different views

  6. In case the previous thread (where Brewsto was OP) got to long, I'll rephrase my last question: many commenters seem to find a talk about injustices women face to be inherently dismissive of men's experiences, so why do they keep watching and commenting on videos that focus on women's issues? There is arguably a shortage of videos that deal with issues specific to men. Some think that this is due to men being considered first in most other issues as well as being overrepresented in media in general, while others think it is symptomatic of a greater problem of silencing relating to men's rights. Anyway, that is my simplified take on it. I'm leaning towards the former view, but I'd like to hear other points of view.

  7. Pompeii happiness and had occurred before African slaves meet Rome or the inquisition came to regulate slavery. That's Federally for all-of-y'all. We live in a modern day Pompeii, except we have no Volcanos to worry about. What will save us? I know not faith. Law and Order will.

  8. No, it's not number one, Jimmy. The literal butchering of, or chemical burning to death of, mass numbers of pre-born children, (even during normal, healthy pregnancy) for the sake of "convenience" – that's the number one abuse of rights. The very right to be alive. As someone who has posed himself as pro-life and a believer in Christ yourself, you surely know this Mr. Carter. If you really feel it's important to speak out against the biggest abuses of human rights, why not speak out on this?

  9. Came to this one just looking for a Coastal Southern accent to hear, because of a theory that it's the closest surviving way of speaking English, going back to the 17th century. Listened to Jimmy's essay. One more time, almost cried about this guy being a fine person, with integrity, and wanting to really do good, for no selfish reason.

    (Also, Gregg Allman's autobiography has a great little passage about the band spacing out and showing up to late for the Georgia Governor/presidential candidate's gala thing, where they were supposed to perform. Jimmy was cool, they sat around on the front porch, Jimmy barefoot, and just passed a home-rolled around instead.)

  10. Here is a human being who has the wisdom and the courage to hold up the mirror into the faces of abusive men…….of course they don`t like it…….but it gives them the chance to change their ways and begin to understand the real meaning of justice and fairness amongst all human beings. Thank you Jimmy Carter. Your courageous understanding of love is an inspiration to me and hopefully millions of other men, who do care about the real meaning of manhood……what kind of men are we if we try to dominate and control-. That suggests unbelievable weakness within. Mr. Carter is right: Above all else, it`s time for men to stand up for women and children everywhere across the globe. What is happening is a terrible tragedy !!!!! How can we watch this and sit and do nothing about it……how can we live with ourselves without compassion for the oppressed? I believe that most men have the capacity to care and stand up for women and children. The opportunities are right in front of our noses on a daily basis.

  11. I wish Jimmie would endorse the best democratic candidate for woman and come out openly endorsing Bernie Sanders.

  12. We as woman are treated good here. Holy Rollers still mostly treat women like crap. Slavery still exists in the world wake up.

  13. Thankyou President Jimmy Carter. Personally I believe the majority of men do not care because they are not held accountable. Especially here in U.S. Violent crimes against women and children seems to be a Taboo subject. Furthermore, sentencing preps recieve less time than drug dealers. I think that if early education on equality should be mandatory in all education systems. You are correct about men not listening. Women deserve the same rights. Perhaps the world would be better if more women held office. Women are by nature more sensation and nurturing. Thankyou and Aloha! β™‘

  14. Jimmy is flat wrong about the SBC. The Bible is clear. He's being dishonest. God does treat woman equally but their ROLE in life is different. MEN are to be the leaders in the church. All one must do is look at Jesus, His desciples, and the first churches. NO woman were pastors. This is a new thing. He's wrong.

  15. All he has achieved during this talk is to make women feel victimized and develop further hatred against innocent men

  16. As long as the U.S. has corporate prisons with stockholders there will be controlled politicians who push for more laws with longer incarceration. Of course they are exempt from living under this police state – right Hillary?

  17. language is shaped by culture. cultures are shaped by religions. as for men enjoying their priviledge, who would want to make themselves smaller so another can surpass them? it's not natural to our survival instincts.

  18. It's a long post, but the gist of it is: Jimmy Carter renounces his Christianity because, he believes it is a platform for abusing women. Jimmy Carter!! My post script would be that, maybe (now that some women can read and write) it's time to update these 2,000 year old posts from these ancient religions. Try it on…

  19. Thank you, President Emeritus Jimmy Carter. You are an amazing man, and a strong one, to take this stand. I appreciate you. You see needs and address them. Yes, as some of the comments have stated, you could have added untold dozens, hundreds, thousands, to your list. Time did not permit. The wrongs against women, just in this country, are multitude. You did a wonderful job on touching on some of the more horrific around the world. Thank you, thank you, and thank you. You have inspired me. By the way, my husband is one of those who DO give a damn about women, and so does my Dad. I know plenty of the other kind, but these two men, and you, stand as shining examples to me. Susan Breton

  20. Genital mutilation is certainly never promoted in the Bible, this is a common Islamic practice. From an objective standpoint Carter's passion to help women and minorities and those who are oppressed is a strong point, yet on some of the things he said about Southern Baptist as a whole from my point were not accurately reflecting the entirity of America's largest protestant denomination. Do I think it is excessive and a little legalistic that some churches in the southern baptist convention forbid a woman to teach a sunday school class or a class with a man in it? Yes. What Paul was refering to in my studies of scripture was that a woman should not be a lead pastor of a church, yet there were women in the early church that played an invalueble role. The whole equal pay matter, now I do think he is right scripturally to pay men and women equally when they are in the same type of job and level of employment. I do not think its fair to pass up a woman over a man who are both qualified for the role. That is not impartial. I am not entirely convinced though that most jobs do that but some do. Carter has a few things in his favor yet I sensed at the begining of this sermon he grouped Christisnity way to closely with his mention of Islam. Because the two are very very different. That is just my take and although I cannot know another person's heart, Carter sounds as though he has some very good ambitions, yet some things I do not agree with 100%. He is right that women and men and blacks and whites are all created by God and have human rights. I strongly disagree with his stance on the death penalty since a cerial murderer had no problem ending many people's lives and do think if you murder a person you cannot say you still have a right to your own life. I think that matter of death penalty or not should be a state by state choice and although I have no strong lean toward or against capitol punishment, I will say that Jesus warned, "Those who live by the sword will die by the sword" and I am not sitting around crying over someone who killed many then got executed, unless they were wrongly convicted and were truly innocent.

  21. Jimmy Carter LAYING DOWN THE TRUTH HAMMER. (Also, this video is not sexist towards men, I AM A MALE.) Carter is stating it like it is, in cold-hard facts.

    Deal with it, and do something about it.

    BUT, here is my critsicism of Jimmy if anything. He doesn't believe abortion is right. ABORTION PLAYS A HUGE PART IN EQUAL RIGHTS FOR WOMEN. Giving women free-choice of their bodies during pregnancy directly, I MEAN, DIRECTLY leads to their equality. This is Jimmy's HUGE blind spot, imo.

  22. Can you imagine other former Presidents like Clinton, Bush, or Obama giving a speech like this? I think not. They're too busy enjoying their million dollar homes and their hedge fund manager friends while Carter is teaching Sunday School and trying to address human suffering.

  23. The mistreatment of females speaks to a larger issue, and I don't agree that religion is a basis for any part of it. I think those who mistreat females are inclined to mistreat anything they can, animals, children, or anyone around who is vulnerable. It may have become institutionalized in religion or other forms, but the issue is that some people who happen to be men are fond of causing harm and degrading vulnerable persons around them.

  24. I love how all these guys think they are smarter than jimmy carter because they hang out in the anti feminist section of youtube.

  25. Fun fact: out of every president from Carter to Trump the wage gap decreased the most under Ronald Reagan and the fastest under George HW Bush.

  26. Jimmy why don't you talk about the abuse of women and children here at home in the west. we are suffering here and people like you are turning blind eyes to the oppression of women in the west.

  27. he’s talking about genital mutilation, honor killings, and trafficking/sexual slavery and people are seriously chalking it up to liberal agenda? These are serious human rights violations and have no affiliation with a political party.

  28. Jimmy…thank you for this speech and empathy. What, how do we change? Women and men must support mutual rights of both genders. If we can't solve this I think the supreme being is both male and female is grievously hurt and will I pray help us make it all right.

  29. I just discovered this video. and President Jimmy Carter's final comment. made my heart stop.
    Men don't give a damn because of not wanting there privilege challenged!
    And Carter was specically speaking of the men who say they (kinda) care!
    Ladies if you love Star Wars this sincere advise came from Jedi Yoda!
    This was magnificent.

  30. You men do the crimes. Women deserve to be protected. If men are abusing each other you need to SPEAK UP. No one can help you if you do not. And I REFUSED to have my sons circumcised and I would’ve fought for them if I needed too. It’s true, men do not care for women or men. The problem is MEN. You should not rule.

  31. Hypocrite. Not only he didn't do anything about these issues, but he had the CIA do everything possible to establish dictatorial governments in Latin America.

  32. This is perhaps the first time in history where old men's advise to younger generations is ever less thoughful, truthful and sage and ever more superficial, demagogic and stupid. Please welcome, former president of the United States: Jimmy Carter.

  33. This is a problem of white western women. They are paranoid, unstable, ill-disciplined, cant love and a selfish.
    Good riddance.
    So sorry for any man that dates you

  34. We LOVE Jimmy Carter. A man with a real commitment to humanity. After his presidency he has never stopped working for the people. He has been a hero and a TRUE Christian in every sense of the word. This is what Christianity actually is. This is what a hero is. Thank you, Jimmy. You are beloved. And respected.

  35. God Bless them and their familiesπŸ™πŸ½πŸ™πŸ½πŸ™πŸ½πŸ™πŸ½πŸ™πŸ½πŸ™πŸ½πŸ™πŸ½πŸ™πŸ½πŸ™πŸ½β€οΈβ€οΈ

  36. I agree that women need better protection and I'm ashamed to not think about what they deal with but why does this go on without it being a top priority? I need to learn what they go through that we don't see.

  37. The holy texts aren't being misinterpreted. If you read them, they clearly say that men are above women. People will continue to believe that as long as they keep believing those awful books.

  38. Jimmy Carter is right up there with Abraham Lincoln, Martin Luther King, Jr. and Mother Teresa. Thank you for being a straight shooter and unafraid to speak up for the oppressed and abused.

  39. And,,,, in this country,,, human trafficking of woman as prostitutes,,, ya,,, slaves in america,,, another round are those men on our country,, who oppress their woman and abuse her and their cildren

  40. Women like to be mistreated, or they would get married and have 16 children with their husbands, like they use to. Instead they want to be considered equal, a man will always mistreat another man. Look at war.

  41. Jimmy Carter speaks Truth as a true President and Christian. The fact that he was so vilified, while the current inhabitant of the White House has been so supported by almost half our citizenry paints a sobering and ugly picture of our nation.

  42. Honor killing is not in the Quran, It is in the Bible, honor killing predates the Quran and Islam Mr. president was smart enough not to make genital mutilation of women an Islamic practice because it is not, it is cultural practice in Africa , but I am not so sure as far as Egypt.

  43. 2019.. Things in America for women got worst. Some of the problem is because women helped to oppress other women.

  44. Huh, sounds like some of my family members.

    Except the role is reversed…
    Stay off drugs and alcohol, work as a good boy should.
    Then you get blasphemy and stoned to death…

    What a world, unreal

  45. Carter 2020!!! This man has had more success than as a former President of the US than his very successful four years as president. A great man. A great leader. A great human!

  46. 92% of S. Arabian women have no sexual pleasure because of female mutilation? OMG! Its so much worth than I thought. I feel sick!

  47. Thank you president Jimmy Carter.
    For bring peace. for true believers. Keeping Americans Safe. 11-2019.
    1966. Thur 1989.. I am alive for believing in Love.

  48. I love this talk. Carter does indeed speak the truth and the only problem that is mostly ignored is the economic system that commodifies everything; pits men against women; doesn't allow men to express vulnerability and fosters toxic femininity and masculinity. PeaceπŸ™βœŒοΈ

  49. I πŸ’—πŸ’—πŸ’—πŸ’—πŸ’—πŸ’— Jimmy! One of the most ethical and kindest person on Earth. He cares. He gets it. He works for the betterment of all. He could sit back now and relax, but he doesn’t, he just keeps helping others, caring about others, and doing the right thing.

  50. Why I believe the murder of millions of babies in the womb [which Carter did not try to stop by overturning Roe v Wade] is the number one human rights abuse.

  51. True. Men are the only problem in the world. Its like little ants roaming on a feminine grand beautiful world and the ants are men are they pollute it anything they see . Theyre just extra baggage . Lol .

  52. Ronald Reagan and the Republican party have done so much harm and evil to America (and the World). Jimmy Carter has done so much good for America.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *