Today I want to write about something that’s been on my mind lately… You don’t need to agree, you don’t need to continue reading at any point, and you’re welcome to continue reading, come back whenever, or go your own way, it’s all okay, and I’ll continue to respect you. This posting has nothing to do with acting, singing, pictures, TV appearances, entertainment, or 90% of what I typically post about.
(Extra space here for you decide whether or not you want to continue…)
Last night I read on someone’s Facebook page something about how all torture is justified if it prevents catastrophes like the events of 9/11/2001. Now, while I don’t normally bite on these postings, as they tend to bring out opinions of people who rabidly disagree on both sides, this time I found myself writing something.
While I understood/stand his opinion (as well as others), and we live in a country where voices are welcome from all, are we as a people then saying, “Yes, torture our people too?”
Yes… I “get” we’re not always dealing with countries that play by agreed upon sets of rules, and in fact we may be dealing with people who don’t play by any rules, or more likely, only play by their own set of rules, even if it’s, “By any means necessary.”
Where do lines get drawn, who draws them, and if we’re allowed to bend them now, are we allowed to break them next week? Or what if by chance the person being tortured isn’t connected at all to the group, act or crime? What if the person was only guilty by proximity? Or unknowingly somehow contributed to the tragedy? Would it be okay to torture the person that rented the van for the ’93 bombing… Or the person that sold the fertilizer and diesel connected to the Oklahoma bombing?
Unfortunately I don’t see this as simple… Saving lives is important. Preventing the loss of innocent lives is important. Business as usual… important.
I’ve gotten into quite a number of debates about this topic, as well as the topic that very few individuals look at themselves, or their cohorts, or their countries as “evil…” And I’m pretty certain ISIS, the SS, the KKK, the IRA, the KGB, the IRS, the LADOT.LACITY didn’t/don’t/doesn’t think of themselves as “evil,” and they all look at us, me, you, or others as “evil.”
There is also a way of time revealing the truth to matters, with various people in power hoping that actual truths never surface. Whether we like it or not there is a vast history of incorrect information and lies that have sent countries into wars.
Wow, I’ve gone on a bit of a tangent. Well, best thing to do is go on another one…
I’m not against the death penalty in theory, “the punishment should fit the crime,” and full disclosure, at one point in time might have even said that I was pro-death penalty. However, time and experience has shifted my opinions. What if someone who isn’t guilty of a crime or horrific act is found guilty of it. While you can say that never happens, about a year ago I met one such person, a friend of a friend, who after a decade on death row was found not-guilty by new revealed evidence.
Again, I get this Facebook friend’s feelings… I really do. I don’t at all think it’s wrong for anyone to have those feelings. It’s just now, I see other angles that make it a much more difficult question for myself.
Okay, another tangent…
Some times when I watch car chases on TV that go on for what seems to be hours, my gut reaction is… “Just freakin’ shoot them” or “blow out their tires,” but… What if the person is of limited mental capacity, for whatever reason, and knocking them off the road would certainly cause certain injury? Or what if YOUR fourteen year old kid and his friends took keys from your dresser, and decided to drive around the block, and once the police started chasing them, out of fear, they didn’t know what to do but try to race away…
I’ll write it one last time, it’s really understandable for humans to have visceral reactions, and by no means is this an attack on those feelings.
In a way, it is completely absurd that we have rules of warfare: That leaders of countries agree on acceptable ways to send their troops to graves.
And why should a heinous murderers, and repeat offenders be allowed to live when they take the lives of innocent, loving, good-hearted people…?
And geezus, my taxes are high enough… Do I really have to foot the huge financial burden for two dozen police officers and a helicopter pilot to spend two hours chasing down a car in a stupid car chase…?
Do on to others… Turn the other… Compassion. Forgiveness. These are incredibly hard, and honestly, I’m not sure I am capable of loving my enemies, but it’s estimated that 2.1 billion people in this world identify themselves as Christians, a religion which is built upon these guidelines along with a few others.
The last tangent…
I know there’s a lot of police actions in the news lately, and I’m not going to make a comment on any of them specifically because I don’t know all the facts… But I will write that the only time I ever have a problem with any of these incidents is if anyone, police officers included, acts OUTSIDE the RULES OF THE LAWS that WE THE PEOPLE have agreed upon. And to wrap this all up, that’s basically the core issue I have with using means of torture to get information… Torture is against the RULES THAT WE HAVE SET UP, that we have agreed upon, and those RULES were set up for valid reasons. Now if the question is should we re-write the rules, then that’s another debate.
– Quiche Out
One bonus tangent which I’ve written about in the past…
I’m not for any particular groups rights, I’m for EVERYONE’S RIGHTS. I belong to the United States Of America where we have agreed upon certain rules, rights and conditions. I hope to see the day when our society is above discussing race, faith, color, sexual orientations, geography, groups… Crimes are crimes. Rights are rights. Americans are Americans. Laws are laws. Rules are rules. Innocent until proven guilty. Due process. We the people. All men are created equal.
Cue the music, I’m done.