Civil liberties

Lugar opposes detainee gulag

We've been following closely the news that the Bush administration is exploring plans to detain suspected terrorists for life without a trial (previous article) in cases where there's not enough evidence to convict. The volume of congressional opposition voices you'd expect has been small. One person small. And that person is GOP Senator Richard Lugar:

"It's a bad idea. So we ought to get over it and we ought to have a very careful, constitutional look at this," Sen. Richard G. Lugar (R-Ind.), chairman of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, said on "Fox News Sunday." (full article in the Washington Post)

Is anyone the slightest bit worried that someone actually has to ask, "Is this constitutional?" Like torture, since when did ideas like these attain the dignity of being an option in this country? That's easy: since neo-fascists took over our government.

In 17 days, Mr. Bush will stand before the world and swear an oath to defend the Constitution, while scoffing at Amendments 5, 6, and 8 (to name a few). For quick reference, I've posted those Amendments on the next page.

AMENDMENT VNo person shall be held to answer for a capital, or otherwise infamous crime, unless on a presentment or indictment of a Grand Jury, except in cases arising in the land or naval forces, or in the Militia, when in actual service in time of War or public danger; nor shall any person be subject for the same offence to be twice put in jeopardy of life or limb; nor shall be compelled in any criminal case to be a witness against himself, nor be deprived of life, liberty, or property, without due process of law; nor shall private property be taken for public use, without just compensation.AMENDMENT VIIn all criminal prosecutions, the accused shall enjoy the right to a speedy and public trial, by an impartial jury of the State and district wherein the crime shall have been committed, which district shall have been previously ascertained by law, and to be informed of the nature and cause of the accusation; to be confronted with the witnesses against him; to have compulsory process for obtaining witnesses in his favor, and to have the Assistance of Counsel for his defence.AMENDMENT VIIIExcessive bail shall not be required, nor excessive fines imposed, nor cruel and unusual punishments inflicted.The Presidential Oath of Office:"I [George Walker Bush] do solemnly swear [or affirm] that I will faithfully execute the Office of the President of the United States, and will to the best of my ability, preserve, protect and defend the Constitution of the United States."