Life, Liberty and Property for Everyone

Wow. That’s all I can say. I was trying to think of a topic to write about, and this article just jumped off the screen and into my hands. It is from The New American. You may notice that I link to The New American fairly often. I don’t always agree with them. I probably agree with them 25% of the time, and so I’ll let you know when I do. So you don’t usually see the other 75% of the time when I’m going, “what? These people are absolutely crazy! I can’t believe they are actually saying that!” But I’m going to go on another rant about how much I disagree with The New American now. So if you don’t like my rants, well…don’t keep reading.

Laura Ingraham argues that suspected terrorists shouldn’t be tried in civilian courts but in military tribunals. Why? Because, “Military tribunals are much more effective in these cases because of the sensitivity of the evidence, and their less stringent admissibility rules.” She continues, “One key witness was excluded by the judge because his identity was discovered through enhanced interrogation.” I wasn’t quite sure what this meant at first. Here’s what I think she meant: Ahmed Ghailani is a suspected terrorist being tried right now in a civilian court. There was a key witness who couldn’t testify because they figured out his identity through torturing him and this isn’t allowed in civilian courts. As well it shouldn’t! What levels we are stooping to by forcing victims of torture to testify in a case. Right now they can’t testify in civilian courts, but their evidence can be used in military tribunals. So what exactly is a military tribunal? Here’s the Wikipedia page on it. I have heard this information in other places, so you can trust it. Wikipedia is just easier to link to than a whole bunch of other sites. There is no justice in a military tribunal. No justice at all. It is just a sham. As much of a kangaroo court as when Hitler suspended habeas corpus so he could blame and imprison the “Communist plotters” who had supposedly blown up the Reichstag Parliament building.

I ask the question again, if these men are so guilty, then why can’t they be tried in a civilian court? Is evidence so hard to obtain against them? Does their case look “so innocent” that they wouldn’t be convicted? And if they appeared to be innocent then perhaps we should consider the possibility that they aren’t guilty. Our Founding Fathers wanted a justice system that would err on the side of caution. They said that they’d rather have 10 guilty men set free than 1 innocent man punished unfairly. We’ve got that all turned around now. Americans are so afraid of the terrorists that we’d rather have 10 innocent people imprisoned than 1 guilty man walk free. This is an outrage, not only against the Constitution but against humanity and against God. We are all equal in the eyes of God. What gives some people the “right” to say, “oh, we think you are a terrorist, so we’re going to put you in prison for the rest of your life. Don’t bother thinking about a fair and speedy trial, you won’t be getting anything like that”?

And The New American, almost gleefully, points out that even if all terrorists were tried in civilian courts and were declared not guilty the government will still detain them indefinitely. “Not guilty” doesn’t mean you get to be free again. It just means you get to sit in prison for the rest of your life and know for sure that you will not be getting another chance of becoming free.

Doesn’t anyone realize that these suspected terrorists are people? They are humans beings too, with the right to life, liberty and property. Khalid Sheikh Mohammed deserves the right to his life, liberty and property just as much as I do, or as much as you do. And if someone thinks he ought to give up his liberty or his life then they better do it in a just way that respects his rights until they can unequivocally declare he is truly guilty of the crime. This is what we ought to demand, for if we don’t demand that Khalid Sheikh Mohammed be treated as we want to be treated, then we’ll soon find ourselves being indefinitely detained as enemies of the state.

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