Wednesday, June 22, 2005

Why Dick, why?

Alright onto more serious stuff.

Dick Durbin apologizes for remarks about likening Gitmo prisons to conditions of regimes that inflicted torture on prisoners like the Nazis.

In all of this hand-wringing about whether Dick Durbin is a patriot (coming from those most unknowing about what patriotism to our country should mean, valuing its guarantee of freedom), what has gotten lost here is the fact that people are being tortured. Tortured.

Torture is horrible, from Dirty War Argentina to Nazi Germany to Pinochet's Chile to World War II Japan. Seemingly enlightened countries have been settings for the most horrendous and dehumanizing treatment. What Durbin's critics live in denial about is that the reason we hold up Nazi Germany is because it could happen again. Its crimes are unthinkable not because they represented a rarity in human behavior; they're unthinkable because they represent events all too common.

So how about the "patriots" in Washington and in the right-wing blogosphere (and hey, some Democrats) quit their hand-wringing and do something about preventing our country from going the route of many brutal dictatorships.

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