Some tiny creature, mad with wrath,

Is coming nearer on the path.

--Edward Gorey

Location: Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, U.S. Outlying Islands

Writer, lawyer, cyclist, rock climber, wanderer of dark residential streets, friend.

Wednesday, March 16, 2005

On Torture

From Body and Soul, newly featured on my Policy blogroll for reasons that should be clear the second you look at it, comes this post pulling together myriad stories on torture, demonstrating vividly how much more pervasive it is than even those of us who believe we are well-informed tend to think, and discussing the situation from a nuanced moral framework. Moneyquote:

The problem isn't just that certain people, already prone to that sin, will be given license to practice it and won't know when to stop. Evil isn't something that exists over there in the other guy, but not in me. Whatever penchant for cruelty exists in each of us will come to the surface. And at some point you end up with a country in which people can look at pictures of abuse, read about men beaten while hanging from the ceiling, or children raped and set upon by guard dogs, and move on, perhaps even find some sick enjoyment in the spirit of vengeance. They won't react to the evil done by their leaders. They won't care. Or worse, they will approve.

There is also an affecting post noting that the death of one U.S. soldier made the cover of an Italian daily, and asking what effect it might have on our resolve to maintain a hawkish position in the face of dubious circumstances amid a culture of deceit, failure, and neo-colonial ulterior motives, if our newspapers were to run the same sorts of front-page stories for even a handful of our own dead soldiers, who now number in excess of 1500. Think about that. 1500 dead. Can we afford to be blase about that? Meanwhile, the administration does everything in its power to preclude the appearance of even photographs of coffins of heroic young American soldiers coming home for interment. For shame.

(Hat Tip.)


Blogger Scott said...

Of course the sad thing is that I think we are already there. In the latest Pew Global Attitudes poll 1/3 of Americans say they have a negative view of Muslims, and it's not a rare thing to hear people say they want to nuke Iran or Iraq. When you run a country on division and fear as the president has done (ever since realizing it was the only way he could get reelected) this is the result you get.

6:43 PM  
Blogger Moon said...

although i have much to say on policy, as well you know, when it comes to the gut response to all of this i keep returning to this: i'm not entitled to live in an honorable phase in american history. i'm not entitled to like how my country is behaving. this is the price of democracy. i try to bear up. but it is sad.

7:50 PM  

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