Planet News Views

Friday, September 15, 2006

Follow U.S. Constitution and Existing U.S. Laws Protecting Rights of Accused When Questioning Terror Suspects

Commentary
By Scott McLean

President George W. Bush held a press conference this morning, the main topic was the President's call for Congress to bring "clarity" with a new law regarding how terror suspects can be interrogated.

In my opinion, we should treat every suspect the same in that they should have the right to a lawyer, they should not be punished until they are convicted of a crime, which means they should be considered innocent until proven guilty. Of course convicted terrorists who have murdered innocent people should get the harshest punishment the law allows, so don't think I'm "soft" on terrorism.

However, if the president and Congress approve a law providing (uh, well) "clarity" which really just gives the Central Intelligence Agency permission to use interrogation methods that are either clearly torture, or perceived as torture, then we will have lowered our high standards to a despicable level.

Instead, America must continue to take a strong opposition to anything that would violate the human rights of individuals. I believe we have a responsibility to show the rest of the world the United States treats all people under the law.

In a few words I can sum up my alternative to the President's call for providing "clarity" regarding methods which can be used to get information from terror suspects:

Follow the U.S. Constitution and laws that apply to criminal suspects in the United States.

That said, efforts need to be stepped up to capture Osama bin Laden and all other terror suspects in the 9/11 terrorist attacks. Most people would agree they must be tried and punished for their crimes.

After all, what is the top priority in the war on terror if not to bring the most dangerous terrorists to justice?

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