Thursday, November 03, 2005

A reason to bookmark Human Rights Watch

While President Bush prepares to use his first veto so that he can maintain the right to unilaterally torture people in one of the most anti-democratic moves in American history, Congress was preparing to vote on the Patriot Reauthorization Act which contains provisions that make it easier for the government to kill people. This had escaped my notice until I checked Human Rights Watch and saw their two recent briefs on this subject (here and here).

Ok, we have a(n) (alleged) secret prison system operating without oversight. We have an administration that has fought tooth and nail for the right to declare someone a terrorist and then lock that individual up for ever without any oversight. We have an administration that says it needs to be able to torture people without oversight. And now we have proposed legislation that would make it easier for the federal government to kill people.

My only response is to requote a previous quote of the day

"... there is now a widespread tendency to argue that one can only defend democracy by totalitarian methods ... These people don’t see that if you encourage totalitarian methods, the time may come when they will be used against you instead of for you. Make a habit of imprisoning Fascists without trial, and perhaps the process won’t stop at Fascists." - George Orwell, from The Freedom of the Press

No comments: