Thursday, September 07, 2006

You Say "To-may-to," I Say "To-mah-to," You Say "Alternative Questioning Methods", I Say "Torture," Let's Call the Whole Thing Off!

When I was a kid, my friend, Mark, would drive me crazy.

See, he never lost at any game we'd play. Ever.

You might say, "he didn't like to lose." Who does?

You might say, "he's just that good at whatever we played."

In which case, I'm a sore loser, and should just get over it.

I say, "he changed the rules as he played so that he was always right."

Oh yes he did.

So, after a while, I just didn't want to play anymore.

Why bother?

The game no longer mattered if Mark's victory was insured based not upon our common understanding of the game being played, but the contrived rules created "on the fly" to serve his advantage.

Yesterday, the President gave a "declassification" speech, in which he admitted to that which has been reported for months but never acknowledged. That being, the CIA has been holding terror suspects in secret prisons. He never uttered the word "torture," but he did give that "wanted: dead or alive" attitude when he used the words "alternative questioning methods."

And then, he had the audacity to push Congress into the passing laws making what this Administration has been doing legal, which makes the point, doesn't it? It hasn't been!


The inevitable counter is that people like me are stuck in "pre-9/11" thinking.

And they're right. Yeah, I'm stuck in that 1791 Bill of Rights thinking.

And this is whole point.

The courageous thing is to live up to the ideas that define us, rather than let those who would do us harm redefine our realities.

Why, in God's name, do we become what we most despise?

From the standpoint of the Christian faith, the same holds. How is it that we can so easily relegate our faith to what happens on Sunday and not understand it's mettle is tested by what we live with throughout the rest of the week?

As an American, as a Christian, when is torture o.k.? How does that make sense. Ever.

What, in my Christian faith, makes that o.k.?

Is it expedient? Sure.

Is it beneath us? Absolutely.

He is credited as being a "man of principle," I'm wondering which principle he's keeping.

“It is often easier to fight for principles than to live up to them.” Adlia Stevenson

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