Friday, August 04, 2006

Jose Padilla, Wannabe Terrorist...or Not?

Say it brother:

But what is clear is that the accusations against Padilla have been suspect from the very beginning, not least because the "evidence" supporting the accusations seems to have been procured via torture. And the obvious difficulties which the administration is encountering in proving his guilt demonstrates the reason we don't allow the government to imprison U.S. citizens based solely on the say-so of the President.

All of this powerfully underscores the most glaring deceit in the arguments made by Bush followers with regard to virtually everything concerning terrorism. The fact that the Bush administration suspects someone of being a "terrorist" or accuses them of being one doesn't mean that they actually are guilty. Thus, opposition to the use of torture is not about "treatment given to terrorists," and advocating due process for detainees before they are killed is not about "giving rights to terrorists," and opposition to warrantless eavesdropping is not about "blocking surveillance of terrorists," and demanding that U.S. citizens not be imprisoned without due process is not about "fighting terrorism with litigation." People are not "terrorists" and cannot be treated as such -- particularly not U.S. citizens -- just because the Bush administration thinks they might be or claims that they are.

In other words, supporters of the detention policies of this administration cannot do an end-run around the whole issue of due process and presumption of innocence to try and force critics into admitting that they want to give terrorists "rights" or somesuch. If we were 100% sure that everyone we took into custody was actually a terrorist...well, we wouldn't be letting them go so easily would we?

1 comment:

adam said...

You can say that again.