On June 13, 1992, President George H.W. Bush joined the leaders of 177 other nations in adopting the United Nations’ Agenda 21, a non-binding plan for sustainable “smart growth” in the face of an ever-more populous world.
Nineteen years and seven months later to the day — on Jan. 13, 2012 — the national Republican Party made it perfectly clear that today’s GOP is not the same entity that the center-right Bush presided over between 1989 and 1993.
On that day, the Republican National Committee (RNC) passed a resolution condemning Agenda 21 in no uncertain terms. The plan signed by Bush — which is not legally enforceable and is not a treaty — is “a comprehensive plan of extreme environmentalism, social engineering, and global political control,” it said. It views “the American way of life” as “destructive to the environment,” and instead calls for “socialist/communist redistribution of wealth.” It is a “radical” plan being “covertly pushed” in local U.S. communities, a “destructive and insidious” scheme.
The RNC went further still, recommending that its anti-Agenda 21 resolution be adopted as part of the party’s presidential campaign platform. Three months later, in March, the Tennessee House of Representatives overwhelmingly approved a similar resolution condemning Agenda 21. The initiative is only the latest of efforts to thwart the much-feared advance of internationalism. Similar resolutions have been passed in New Jersey and North Carolina already this year.
Right-wing groups have been attacking Agenda 21 for years. But the recent worry has a lot to do with the work of the John Birch Society (JBS), which has held workshops across the country to attack it. In fact, parts of the Tennessee resolution are taken word for word from model legislation produced by JBS, which is best known for once accusing President Eisenhower of being a communist agent.
Under Agenda 21, the activists argue, the expansive American way of life, in which everyone can aspire to the dream of owning a house with a big yard and two cars in the driveway, will be replaced by one in which increasing numbers are crammed into urbanized “pack ’em and stack ’em” apartment complexes and forced to use mass transportation and live according to a collectivist ethos. Once the UN’s radical utopia is achieved, they suggest, gun ownership will be forbidden and the UN will raise an army intent on terrorizing the populace in the name of social order and equality, sustainability and smart growth.