Monday, December 07, 2009

A Nation of Too Many Laws

"To be clear, then, evidently it was too much law that got us into the war on terror, and yet there's too little law to get us out of it."

-Dahlia Lithwick

One of my greatest complaints about the Bush Administration was their nebulous and disingenuous handling of United States law and how it related to the Global War on Terror (GWOT). While I'm not one of those "Bush is to blame for - insert problem here -" partisans, on this matter, his Vice Presiden and Justice Department take plenty of blame, and I've thought so for years.

Our nation has fought terrorists before, and won. No, make that: won handily. We caught them, tried them, jailed them if they were convicted and executed those whose crimes warranted such. We have done this with, literally, hundreds of violent terrorists throughtout our nation's history (depending on your definition of terrorism, which we have seen in American politics is as malleable as popular culture would like it to be).

But all that changed during the Bush years, with all the talk of the "new kind of war" and the collective memory loss that we had been down the tragic road of terrorism before. To say nothing of the politization of the conflict.

But the most undermining to What America Is was done to us by that administration, convinvcing us, for a time, that we should not use our own laws in the prosecution of the terrorists or the persecution of the war. It is shameful and political that members of that administration continue to try and erode confidence in America's own legal system even as the new administration plans to use it.

Because restoring faith in our own, established system of justice is one of the changes I believed in and voted for last year.


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