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Zer Netmouse
March 28th, 2008
09:15 am


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Blog against torture day

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Date:March 29th, 2008 01:13 pm (UTC)
It's a sad commentary on American life that the TV series 24 has, according to some surveys (sorry, don't have any links available @ the mo; these two things were months apart and I just this second put them together) both helped Americans' comfort level with the possibility of an African-American President, and also helped convince more Americans that torture is absolutely necessary and protecting us constantly from nuclear holocaust.

Yes, if there ever REALLY is a case where we have one hour to find and defuse a nuclear bomb, and the one person who really knows where it is is holding out on us, I'd say sure, torture him. Torture can still be illegal and the law can recognize extenuating circumstances when the torturer is tried. HOWEVER, that sort of scenario hasn't been shown to be the case in any of the people whom this Government has tortured -- I'm sure if it were true, they'd have found a way to crow about it as an example of the effectiveness of torture, rather than just make vague "well, it's saved American lives" statements (our Government has become quite good at saying "trust us, this {insert policy that goes against human rights, privacy, and dignity) has saved lives" without ever giving anything more concrete.

Indeed, some of the stories I've read/heard on the news have shown that our torturing done exactly what torture tends to do -- gotten those tortured to spin sexy-sounding yarns that have sent our Government on wild-goose chases.

And even waterboarding, while causing no long-term physical damage, has been shown to cause lifetime post-traumatic stress disorder and flashbacks. Those arguing for it say "well, these people are the worst of the bad," yet in some cases we've grabbed the wrong person; also, most of those Gitmo detainees were captured by soldiers, ya know, 17-year-olds in the heat of battle who have acted as judge and jury because when the soldiers shot, those being shot at shot back. Or we offered money for them to turn in al-Qaeda members, and gee, amazing, people were sent to Gitmo or Abu Ghraib based merely on tales of "yes, he is al-Qaeda all rightee... I saw him consorting with black cats ... I mean Osama ... now where's my $500?"
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