Monday, May 04, 2009

It should not need to be said: And then they came for me...

Canada Above the Fray Rondel magnetWelcome to Canada!
Do you have any fruit, firearms
or implements of torture
to declare today?


HT Digby: Please click the digg link.

"First they tortured in ticking time bomb cases but I didn't mind because it was a clear and imminent danger..."

An obvious observation ... or it should be.

This deserves to be email-chained to everyone who's ever annoyed you with some damn-fool paranoid massmail forwarding.

I cannot even fathom what combination of fear and moral failure has allowed US Citizens to tolerate this - much less entrench it into a political philosophy! Nonetheless, this very phenomenon is directly related to why I chose to return to Canada.
Waterboarding saves lives shirt
It's not the whole of it, or even a huge part - but at some point, as a citizen of a nation, you have to ask yourself whether, if push came to shove, could you suck up your gut and say "My country, right or wrong?" I found that I could not honestly say that.

To me, that commitment has always depended on the balance of right versus wrong being a positive one. Somewhere during the Bush administration, it became clear to me that Bush was not an historical anomaly, but rather, the logical product of a political movement that prospered because good people chose to do nothing to oppose it.

At some point just prior to the election, even before the economic meltdown, I became convinced that it was entirely possible to envision circumstances in which Canada and the US would come to some parting of the ways. The issue of torture is certainly one issue that could bring this about, and there are a number of others, sovereignty being a very significant one.

Torture is a powerful issue, both in terms of symbolism and as practical evidence of an intolerable degree of ethical and moral failure at the highest levels.

If this does not inform the decisions of other world powers, including Canada, that is also a problem. You see, it goes to the very fundamental issues as to whether the United States can be trusted to act as a lawful power, if it can and will honor it's treaties and international obligations. Actions speak far louder than words.

I was blessed by birth with a choice; citizenship in two nations with remarkable history, people and potential. But of the two nations, one sees history, people and potential as a responsibility to be maintained and fulfilled and the other, sadly, sees it as an entitlement.

I regret being forced to chose. But I am not uncomfortable with the choice I have made. I hope that you, dear reader, are able to come to some acceptable terms with your own citizenship in the merciless light of conscience.

Illustrations:
Canada Above the Fray Rondel by EhCanada

Waterboarding saves lives by walraven

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