The Disgrace in Durban

An international discussion about racism is overdue, but not done this way

This was never going to be an easy conference," said Mary Robinson, United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights, as she spoke in Durban last week at the opening session of the U.N. Conference Against Racism, Racial Discrimination, Xenophobia and Related Intolerance. That was an understatement. The conference was a disgrace. It was a disgrace in conception--in the very idea that a few days of talk could lead to any useful action directed against a scourge that diminishes the lives of millions--and it was a disgrace in execution. The only good thing that might conceivably come out of the conference is...

Want the full story?

Subscribe Now


Get TIME the way you want it

  • One Week Digital Pass — $4.99
  • Monthly Pay-As-You-Go DIGITAL ACCESS$2.99
  • One Year ALL ACCESSJust $30!   Best Deal!
    Print Magazine + Digital Edition + Subscriber-only Content on

Learn more about the benefits of being a TIME subscriber

If you are already a subscriber sign up — registration is free!