The United Nations Charter charges the organization with “promoting and encouraging respect for human rights and for fundamental freedoms for all.” Sadly, the U.N. has often failed to fulfill this obligation. In particular, the Human Rights Council has demonstrated bias and ineptitude, too often manipulated by the world’s worst human rights abusers. The U.S. left the Council in 2018 after other governments failed to support much-needed reforms to prevent human rights abusers from joining and eliminate discrimination against Israel. It is a tall task to fix a body that, in the words of Amb. Craft, “is a haven for despots and dictators, hostile to Israel, and ineffectual on true human rights crises.” Please join us as Amb. Craft discusses lessons learned and offers suggestions for reforms that would help the Council live up to its purpose.

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A new era of Great Power Competition is dawning between the U.S., China and Russia, and the struggle for dominance spans all the world’s oceans. The U.S. Navy is turning to meet this new threat, but the fleet has spent recent decades focused on near-coast operations and support for counterterrorism. Now, it must confront rival navies on the high seas and compensate for Chinese and Russian uses of non-military tactics such as hybrid warfare and coercive behavior.

>>> Index of U.S. Military Strength

Last winter, the regulatory system at the FDA, the CDC and CMS delayed the ability of the United States to rapidly develop and deploy COVID-19 testing. These regulatory failures contributed to the rapid spread of COVID and led to lockdowns, and a wave of infections. This time around, the agencies could (and should) enable us to get ahead of the virus by approving rapid self-testing kits for COVID-19.

The FDA has taken steps in this direction, but barriers remain. For example, a cheap rapid test requires a laboratory certificate, even though it can be performed anywhere with no lab equipment.

In part one of this two-part series, we will discuss what the election outcomes mean for labor policy in the near-term, including insights about what to expect from the next Congress, Administration, and State and Local governments.

Prior to the coronavirus pandemic, the U.S. labor market was experiencing record-setting lows in unemployment and rising incomes, with the largest gains accruing to the lowest-income workers. This was the result of pro-worker and pro-growth tax and regulatory policies. A new congress and administration could not only undo some of those policies but could also pursue actions that could set American workers back decades. The Heritage Foundation and Institute for the American Worker would like to invite you to join us for a two-part series on the future of labor policy in America, for 2021 and beyond.

In the past four years, the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has achieved significant environmental benefits while reining in past agency overreach. It has finalized numerous regulations that respect the rule of law, federalism, and property rights. It has also been proactive in strengthening transparency in agency decision-making. This includes promoting policies that will help ensure the use of sound science and proper benefit-cost analysis in the formulation of regulations.


The Baltic Sea remains one of the most complex regions that the U.S. and NATO are obligated to defend, with Russia posing the only substantial threat to peace and stability. The impact of Russia’s growing presence in Belarus, the evolving global pandemic, the outcome of U.S. elections, and NATO’s ongoing period of reflection will cause ripples for Baltic Security. Finland, Sweden, and the U.S. share a focus on the security and stability of the Baltic Sea region. Already close partners, Sweden and Finland have sought ways to strengthen the security relationship with the U.S., including signing a Trilateral Agreement in May 2018.

Finland and Sweden have recently signaled significant increases in defense investment and continue to cooperate closely with NATO as “enhanced opportunity partners.” Join us for a discussion on Finland and Sweden’s ongoing role in Baltic Sea security, what the new defense investments are and what they mean, and why partnership with the U.S. and NATO should continue to be strengthened.

November is National Adoption Month and the morning after Election Day a critical case about foster care and religious freedom was heard by the Supreme Court. The pandemic shutdowns have reduced the supply of families for the 424,000 children in foster care, 125,000 of whom are eligible to be adopted. Even before COVID-19, the opioid crisis dramatically increased the number of children in the state’s care. And yet because of disagreements over same-sex marriage and gender identity, governments have been taking choices away from parents which reduces families for children. Adoption and foster care provide lifelines to children in need. Please join us as we discuss these issues that are fundamentally about life, civil rights, and the best interests of America’s neediest children.

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Imagine American life without private property rights and a free market system, the foundation that men and women, since the nation’s birth, developed and preserved. Plymouth’s first colonial settlement rejected communal property and successfully implemented the idea of individual property rights by promoting individual initiative and prosperity within the community. Today the assault on private property rights and the creep of socialism continue to challenge free-market principles. Join the discussion and trace the origins of free-market principles from Plymouth’s economic structures to today’s free-market economy and discover the influence on modern-day property rights and economic liberty.

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Faced with the possibility of deep rifts within their new community, the signers of the Mayflower Compact did something almost unheard of in Europe: They mutually agreed to enact “just and equal laws” to guide them in their new political community. There would be no king among their ranks; rather, they would submit themselves to laws that they themselves had written. In this, the Pilgrims offered an early model of American constitutionalism: the rule of law, equal justice, and government by consent of the governed. The Mayflower Compact stands as a rebuke to those who denigrate America’s historic commitment to freedom and democracy, ideals which were written into the very first pages of the American story. Join the discussion to hear the case for preserving our legacy of freedom.

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The 2020 Antipoverty Forum will highlight people and policies reconnecting communities to overcome poverty and social challenges.

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The key to achieving human flourishing is culture — not genes, geography, institutions, or policies. In his latest book, Why Culture Matters Most, Dr. David Rose argues that societal success depends on the ability to impart moral beliefs through culture, strengthening a society’s institutions and practices. Join our second Russell Kirk Lecture for a conversation with Dr. David Rose about the importance of culture and moral beliefs as the foundations for a flourishing civil society.

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Amidst the COVID-19 pandemic and in the face of a rising China, the U.S.-Taiwan partnership is more important than ever. Taiwan is an important partner in the Free and Open Indo-Pacific strategy and a strong democracy with shared values. For years, The Heritage Foundation has called for the U.S. forging an ever-closer partnership with Taiwan, from advocating for a free trade agreement to actively supporting Taiwan’s participation in international organizations. Join us as we discuss how to build upon the U.S.-Taiwan partnership and the role it plays.


Abortion, embryo-destructive research, assisted reproductive technologies, artificial wombs, genetically modified babies, physician-assisted suicide and euthanasia. These are just a small sampling of the bioethical questions our country will have to address in the coming years. Lying beneath these questions are competing visions of what it means to be a human being and how human beings flourish. Join an academic all-star panel as they discuss the ethics, policies, and philosophies at the core of today’s debates. All three scholars served in various capacities on The President’s Council on Bioethics, and have written extensively on these issues, including a new Harvard University Press book by Carter Snead, What It Means To Be Human: The Case for the Body in Public Bioethics.

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Does school choice treat children as widgets? Does it hurt children with special needs? Does school choice have racist origins? Does it siphon money from public schools and balkanize Americans? In School Choice Myths: Setting the Record Straight on Education Freedom, a new book edited by Corey DeAngelis (Reason Foundation) and Neal McCluskey (Cato Institute), 14 of the nation’s top education policy scholars dispel these and other misconceptions. Join us to hear from several of the book’s contributors, and to equip yourself with the information you need to shatter falsehoods standing in the way of education choice and freedom.

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Foster families provide life-saving care for thousands of children each year. These families, in turn, are served by various agencies, both religious and secular, which equip, support, and empower them to care for children. Unfortunately, the City of Philadelphia told longtime foster parents that they could no longer work with Catholic Social Services — because the City doesn’t like its Catholic beliefs about marriage. Now, the Supreme Court will decide the fate of this adoption agency and determine whether these families can continue to serve children in need. Join us for an expert panel featuring a foster care policy expert, a foster and adoptive mother supported by a faith-affirming agency, and the lawyer from the religious liberty law firm Becket who argued on behalf of the families at the Supreme Court.

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It has been an unprecedented election season, including a global pandemic, widespread civil unrest, and the increasing polarization of the country. Americans have a lot to contemplate as they go to the ballot box. But once the people have spoken…it’s time to analyze the results.

Join our all-star panel for unique insights on how the results could translate into policy and action. There will be no shortage of colorful commentary, as our panelists discuss the political implications in the aftermath of what promises to be an historic election. What do the results mean for our constitutional republic? Will there be changes to our foreign policy? How will the results affect the economy and jobs? What are the ramifications for the Supreme Court? We will explore all of these questions and more!

The Heritage Foundation’s Edwin Meese III Center for Legal and Judicial Studies is honored to announce that former Attorney General Ed Meese will deliver our thirteenth Joseph Story Distinguished Lecture. The event will be a conversation with him, reflecting on his life, legacy, and over 50 years within the conservative movement.

The namesake of the lecture—the eminent jurist Joseph Story—became the youngest Associate Justice ever to serve on the United States Supreme Court when he was appointed by President Madison in 1812. Story made a significant mark on American law in his thirty-three years on the bench, but his greatest contribution to jurisprudence is his renowned Commentaries on the Constitution, in which he set forth a philosophy of judicial restraint. This lecture series celebrates his legacy.

Operation Warp Speed (OWS) is an unprecedented public-private partnership to produce and deliver 300 million doses of a safe and effective COVID-19 vaccine by January 2021. Thus far nearly $10 billion has been directed by Congress to this effort which carries the promise of an early end to the pandemic and the resumption by Americans of their normal lives. The two main government partners within OWS are the Health and Human Services and Defense Departments. The Department of Defense is providing key assistance and capabilities including assistance with logistics, contracting and supply chain management. Something else DOD is providing is leadership.

In May 2020 Army General Gus Perna was weeks away from concluding a 39 year military career when President Donald Trump called upon him to serve as the Chief Operating Officer for OWS. Confirmed by the Senate on July 2, General Perna with Dr. Moncef Slaoui, the Chief Scientific Advisor, now helps lead this historic undertaking which has been compared to the country’s WWII Manhattan Project.

Every night, nearly half a million Americans sleep in homeless shelters, cars, and the streets. Sadly, many of these citizens struggle with addiction or mental illness. Yet in America’s most progressive cities, left-wing mayors and city councils spend billions of dollars on homelessness programs with insufficient results. Why do the most progressive cities have the highest rates of homelessness? What conservative solutions could stop this problem?

In the wake of the COVID-19 lockdowns and widespread street unrest, cities are now grappling with what to do about homelessness. Join The Heritage Foundation as we expose the left’s counterproductive approach and bring to light thoughtful, compassionate conservative solutions for homelessness.

From building the border wall to rescinding the unconstitutional DACA program to stopping illegal immigrant caravans from Central America, the Trump Administration has made a dizzying number of border security and immigration changes. Border security and immigration are regularly among the top issues that Americans care about because they affect so many aspects of our lives – the economy, crime, public health, education, culture, and more.

The meaningful progress of the Trump Administration is opposed by the radical left who seek to undo these changes and impose an open borders immigration policy, along with amnesty for millions of illegal aliens already in the United States. The Trump Administration made these changes in the face of stiff and coordinated opposition via lawsuits and judicial activism, congressional inaction, and state and local sanctuary jurisdictions. This opposition has real consequences, including heartbreaking drug overdoses and violent gang activity in the United States from the deadly drugs and MS-13 gang members crossing our border. In 2020, COVID-19 further complicated America’s border and immigration issues, leading to travel restrictions, employment visa and foreign student policy changes to protect public health and prioritize Americans getting back to work. America will continue to experience dynamic immigration issues when countries recover from COVID-19 and have to address their struggling economies.