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Sunday reading

I was going to say something more about cell phones and street scenes but then I read the Outlook section in The Washington Post, and more specifically this article on the Gitmo prisoner camp and now I'm much too upset to go on about other stuff.

How can anyone read this and not be outraged at what is being done in our name? The treatment of official and "unofficial" prisoners is a perversity and ruining what this country is supposed to stand for. Torture is never right. As a so called civilized nation, a beacon of democracy and freedom to the world we shouldn't even have to debate this issue. Torture is wrong and among many other things it demeans us. 

Not to mention, it erodes the U.S. standing in the world, weakens our soft power and creates yet more enemies. Holding people without proof, mistreating them, trying to "disappear" them – how will this not radicalize them, their families and friends? Is this really going to help us? Quite apart from the fact that this is horribly wrong, and we should not be stooping to this level.

It's one thing to arrest them and hold them (but not torture them) if there were actual proof, but everything I see, hear and read indicates that in too many of these cases these people were just swept up, almost randomly, or on very thin suspicions, and then our administration decided to make them extra-legal in order to have a "freer" hand in their treatment. Now, when they find that there is no good evidence, just releasing these people is embarrassing and reduces the administration's credibility and any ability to make its case next time.

How exactly does that help fight terror? 

But what really gets me is that in an attempt for safety we have thrown away our ideals and principles apparently with little thought. So, in response to a terrible terrorist attack, we now torture, detain people without proof for years, and hold the Geneva Convention and basic human rights in contempt. In other words, we have effectively joined Iran, North Korea, Cuba, Saddam's Iraq, and others on the list of human rights abusers and evil regimes.

I thought we were supposed to be better than that. Wasn't that the point? 


One Response

  1. sunday reading
    you bled thru this writing
    you allowed yourself to get emotional
    perhaps too emotional
    from the top: “I am too upset”
    what upsets me
    is when Americans in America are overlooked
    in other words—there are many that send large amounts of money to foreign countries like Eritrea and Lebanon—just to name two
    and yet choose not to help Americans in the adjacent county
    even if these are Americans of Eritrean or Lebanese descent
    how can we live right next door to the hungry and poor
    and not feel it?

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