Apparently, fear of partisan political reprisal trumps constitutional rights, decency, and a host of other important things in the lastest failure of the United States’ legislative branch to keep insanity out of our lawbooks.
Both political parties seem to have failed us horribly. Republicans sided with a corrupt and out-of-control administration in an effort to bolster itself against possible defeat in midterm elections, while Democrats, afraid of being considered “light on terror”, only put up a limp-wristed struggle, with the bill in question passing easily.
The “evil” in question is the Military Appropriations Act of 2006, which allows anyone, even a citizen of the United States, to be declared a “lawful enemy combatant”, and therefore be stripped of all civil rights and due process. Many have said that this sets us back “900 years … by denying habeas corpus (sic)” to pre Magna Carta status. A nice, simple review of what this bill does is here.
I probably shouldn’t be speaking out against this, since doing so might inadvertantly classify me as one of these supposed “enemy combatants”. It’s a shame when an awful legal loophole can be expanded like this to allow uncontrolled expansion of Executive power. I, for one, advocate the use of encryption technologies like OTR for IM communication, TOR for web browsing, and anything else you can get your hands on to keep yourself away from the overextended reach of the overzealous executive branch.
Maybe, upon midterm elections in this country, we can try to reclaim what is rightfully ours — the liberties guaranteed to us by the Bill of Rights. I urge anyone living in the United States to vote against any incumbent official who voted for or advocated this bill in whole or in part. I used to think that the root of the problem was the neoconservative administration in power, but I’m starting to realize that there are very few who cannot help shoulder the blame for the enormous trench we’re digging ourselves into. How can people envy your liberties and freedoms when you’re more than willing to trade them cheaply for a little inferred temporary security?
I hate writing posts about political matters. Maybe at some point the insanity will die down, and I can go back to writing about things that *don’t* make me mad for a change.