Remarks by D. Jeffrey Hirschberg, Governor, Broadcasting Board of Governors, marking the 60th anniversary of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights.

Thank you Steve. It’s a delight for me to be here on behalf of the Broadcasting Board of Governors today to celebrate the 60th anniversary of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights.

My father raised me to be a rag salesman, although it didn’t quite turn out that way.

The declaration was passed 48-0 with eight abstentions and two absences as a monumental achievement [in response] to the horrors of the Holocaust. The Declaration enshrines a wide range of civil, political, economic, social and cultural rights.

Article 19 of the Universal Declaration is what we are here to celebrate today, and it is on your screen behind you and everybody can read it.

It’s a Universal Declaration that is not universally observed, not universally respected and not universally adhered to. It is, in fact, aspirational, and the job of journalists is to foster that aspiration in one way or another.

Now for those of you who don’t know, the Broadcasting Board of Governors is an umbrella organization for U.S. government-funded non-military international broadcasting. It’s comprised of four Democrats, four Republicans and the Secretary of State. It broadcasts in 60 languages around the world to 175 million people every week.

Each of our broadcasters

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