Thursday, May 21, 2009

Regarding National Security:Obama Blames and Cheney Fires Back

While President Obama claims that he wants to move forward and look to the future he is continually focusing on the past and playing the blame game. Obama has an obsession of pointing out how he wants to distance and differentiate himself from Bush administration policies. At every possible chance Pres.Obama criticizes the Bush administration and loves making a theatrical scene while promoting himself at the same time. Today, Dick Cheney took the opportunity to defend the Bush administration foreign policy decisions. Cheney even had the courage to challenge President Obama on much of his foreign policy rhetoric and claimed that Obama is putting politics before national security.

Cheney gave a very moving speech with an account of where he was and how he was touched and changed on September 11,2001. Cheney expressed how he and others' in the Bush administration realized that they had an obligation to protect Americans and prevent another terrorist attack from happening on U.S. soil again.
Cheney said:
"Part of our responsibility, as we saw it, was not to forget the terrible harm that had been done to America … and not to let 9/11 become the prelude to something much bigger and far worse.That attack itself was, of course, the most devastating strike in a series of terrorist plots carried out against Americans at home and abroad...and then the hijackings of 9/11, and all the grief and loss we suffered on that day.
Nine-eleven caused everyone to take a serious second look at threats that had been gathering for a while, and enemies whose plans were getting bolder and more sophisticated. Throughout the 90s, America had responded to these attacks, if at all, on an ad hoc basis. The first attack on the World Trade Center was treated as a law enforcement problem, with everything handled after the fact - crime scene, arrests, indictments, convictions, prison sentences, case closed.That's how it seemed from a law enforcement perspective, at least - but for the terrorists the case was not closed. For them, it was another offensive strike in their ongoing war against the United States. And it turned their minds to even harder strikes with higher casualties. Nine-eleven made necessary a shift of policy, aimed at a clear strategic threat - what the Congress called "an unusual and extraordinary threat to the national security and foreign policy of the United States." From that moment forward, instead of merely preparing to round up the suspects and count up the victims after the next attack, we were determined to prevent attacks in the first place."

As many Americans look back and ponder which of the Bush foreign policies including enhanced interrogation techniques worked or didn't work, whether they were justified or not, and whether any of these techniques constitute torture or not; we as Americans while in deep thought must remember the great threat Americans faced on Sept.11,2001.

I believe unless a person has actually has been in President Bush's shoes, or Cheney's shoes in having to deal with the aftermath of 9/11, in which these two officials knew that they had to protect Americans from another terrorist attack, a person would not know for sure exactly how they would have reacted being given the chance to be in that same exact situation. I believe No person has the right to judge the Bush administration in that regard. Even President Obama was not acting there as commander-in-chief on that tragic day, so how can he really know how he would have reacted had it actually been him who was commander-in-chief on that tragic day?

What gives a person the moral authority to judge others' when we have no idea what the "true" intentions of our commander-in-Chief consisted of after 9/11 happened? I believe Bush's interests were in acting for the good of the country in order to keep us safe from another terrorist attack. So, I believe we should give him the benefit of the doubt instead of judging him and others in the Bush administration harshly.

Yesterday, Obama said that the United States reacted out of fear. I know for me, when 9/11 happened that brought fear to the forefront. Were you afraid after 9/11 happened? I think fear in that circumstance was the most natural response a person could have had. As a United States citizen I feared that another attack would happen on U.S. soil. In reaction to this real, imminent and grave threat against the United States the Bush administration felt the need to stop the terrorists over in the mideast before the terrorists entered the United States.

For a President who wants to distance himself as much as possible from the previous administration, Obama, contrary to his mantra, has adopted many of Bush's foreign policy positions. He has adopted re-instating military tribunals, The Patriot Act, Wire Tapping, Iraq and Guantanomo just to name a few. I encourage you to read an article By Charles Krauthammer which includes more information on this topic.
President Obama even reserves the right to use or request the use of these enhaned interrogation techniques when necessary for the safety of our country. If he truly categorically rejects the use of enhanced interrogation techniques and believes that the Bush administration was taking the low road than why is he reserving the right to make use of these very same techniques?

I think that former President Bush and his administration deserve the benefit of the doubt in that they loved the United States so much as to want to do everything necessary to prevent another terrorist attack. That is exactly what happened for the past 7 or so years. I just am thankful that President Obama is adopting many of the same policies of the Bush administration. I say to everyone, let us hope and pray that all things necessary are enacted from henceforth in order to prevent another future terrorist attack.
http://townhall.com/columnists/CharlesKrauthammer/2009/05/22/obama_in_bush_clothing_america_fights_on

22 comments:

Kyle R. Cupp said...

Teresa,

You write:

“What gives a person the moral authority to judge others' when we have no idea what the "true" intentions of our commander-in-Chief consisted of after 9/11 happened? I believe Bush's interests were in acting for the good of the country in order to keep us safe from another terrorist attack. So, I believe we should give him the benefit of the doubt instead of judging him and others in the Bush administration harshly.”

We don’t need to know the intentions of President Bush in order to judge the particular actions he took in response to 9/11. You yourself judge his policies in this post! You say they we’re the right policies. Others have judged his policies to be the wrong responses to terrorism, sometimes on practical ground, sometimes on ethical grounds. I don’t see a sufficient reason to deny that the president had good intentions, but I think much of what he did in the name of keeping is safe was illegal and immoral. I have not only the right to make that judgment, but a duty to do so.

“I believe unless a person has actually has been in President Bush's shoes, or Cheney's shoes in having to deal with the aftermath of 9/11, in which these two officials knew that they had to protect Americans from another terrorist attack, a person would not know for sure exactly how they would have reacted being given the chance to be in that same exact situation. I believe No person has the right to judge the Bush administration in that regard.”

Yes we can! Teresa, do you not believe that there are objective standards beyond “beings in someone’s shoes” by which we can judge the morality of an action? Teresa, your kind of thinking is the same used to justify abortion and euthanasia. You are not in the woman’s shoes, so you cannot judge her choice!

Kyle R. Cupp said...

I should add that for all your talk about giving President Bush the benefit of the doubt and assuming good motives on his part, you sure attribute the worst motives to President Obama. In your first paragraph, for example, you accuse him, without evidence, of having an obsession and of loving to make a theatrical scene and promote himself. You’re not judging his actions here, which would be fine, but his motives, desires, and psychological state.

I think we should assume good motives on both their parts unless we are proven otherwise. And, as I said, we have as citizens an obligation to criticize the actions of our presidents even when those actions arose from good intentions.

Teresa said...

I believe abortion is a clear cut issue. There is even scientific evidence that proves the unborn baby is a live human being. National security is an ambiguous issue with no "right" or "wrong" of handling it. There are many different approaches and different strategies in reference to national security. With abortion you do not need to be in the person's shoes in order to know that abortion is the murder of an innocent human life.In the case of an unborn baby there are pictures that are actually shown in a physical form and shows what the unborn baby looks like, which conveys a concrete reality. In the case of the national security debate, this occurs in an abstract form, since we as citizens have no voice at the table with the President when national security plans are being formed. Citizens can only debate with one another and not there is no discussion between citizens and a President's national security team.

A President has the weight of the world on his shoulders and has an obligation to protect Americans from harm and that became much more a reality, or self-evident on 9/11. There was no "one" other person in the U.S. solely responsible for protecting citizens from future harm. So, I believe unless you actually have that sole responsibility and have that weight on your shoulders, a person not having this sole responsibility, in reality would not know how it felt to be in that type of a position. As citizens we can make an educated guess but not actually know the full scope of reality that the "sole" individual has and knows in being responsible for the safety of all Americans. I think that we, as citizens need to give Bush the benefit of the doubt in that he was looking out for the "good" of the country. I believe that a person can disagree with a President's policies without judging the other person in a bad light.

When President Obama displays his narcissistic attitude in public, repudiates the past administrations actions, while in contrast he also states that he wants to look forward and not look backward, I wonder where his logic is coming from and why he doesn't listen to his own advice. By his words and actions in public obama proves my point that he is obsessed with the Bush administration in wanting to distance himself from its policies in any way possible. I am merely basing this on pure observation of Obama, when he speaks to the public. I am not judging his motives but am pointing out reality and pure observations that honestly puzzles me.

Kyle R. Cupp said...

“National security is an ambiguous issue with no "right" or "wrong" of handling it.”

If this were true, the Church would have no teachings about just and unjust war – no just war theory. The Church has a just war theory. Therefore, your assertion is not true. The whole idea behind the just war teaching is that there are right and wrong ways of handling national security.

“There are many different approaches and different strategies in reference to national security.”

True, but that does not mean that all approaches and strategies are just. There are also multiple approaches to and means of addressing abortion. That doesn’t make the morality of abortion ambiguous.

“A President has the weight of the world on his shoulders and has an obligation to protect Americans from harm…”

Also true, but protecting Americans is not his only obligation or even his highest obligation. He also has an obligation to uphold the law, for example.

From a Catholic standpoint, it is better to suffer evil than to commit evil, so therefore the president, from this standpoint, has a greater obligation not to do evil (i.e., to justice) than he has to protect Americans. Cheney disagrees. If you do as well, then you disagree with the Church and with a foundation of Christian moral principles.

“…a person not having this sole responsibility, in reality would not know how it felt to be in that type of a position.”

Knowing how something feels is not a prerequisite for sound moral judgment.

“I think that we, as citizens need to give Bush the benefit of the doubt in that he was looking out for the "good" of the country.”

I agree. That doesn’t prevent me from criticizing him.

“When President Obama displays his narcissistic attitude in public, repudiates the past administrations actions, while in contrast he also states that he wants to look forward and not look backward, I wonder where his logic is coming from and why he doesn't listen to his own advice.”

Wonder all you want, but the moment you assert something about Obama, you are morally obligated to support it with evidence. Slander and calumny are very serious. You say that president has a narcissistic attitude, but to really know that, you would have to see into his heart and soul. Do you have that power?

“I am not judging his motives but am pointing out reality and pure observations that honestly puzzles me.”

Yes you are. You are claiming that he is motivated by narcissistic self-love and an obsession with the previous administration. You are assuming that what you see is narcissism and obsession, but you haven’t proven it. You haven’t provided evidence. And unless you can get him to open up honestly about his interior life, your evidence will not be sufficient.

“I believe abortion is a clear cut issue.”

You might, but not everyone does. Science may be able to give a basis for calling an unborn baby a human being, but it doesn’t give any basis for attributing rights. Rights, such as the right to life, are outside of its domain. Returning to my original point, the reasoning you use to defend the former president’s policies is the same reasoning sometimes used to defend the choices to have an abortion. The line is the same: you shouldn’t judge because you are not in their shoes.

Teresa said...

Kyle,
You misunderstood me. I wasn't talking about War. Obama infuriates me beyond reason and accusing him of being narcissistic is probably the nicest thing I am going to say about him.

Kyle R. Cupp said...

Teresa,

You were talking about national security, to which the just war theory applies, as do a number of other teachings of the Catholic Church. You assertion that there is no right or wrong way of handling national security is to say that no moral law, just war theory or otherwise, applies to national security. Anything goes. That is the meaning of your words.

In calling Obama narcissistic, you are judging not his actions but his person, his heart and soul. You are claiming to know what and how he loves. You have provided no evidence for this accusation, perhaps because you cannot provide any. You don’t have a window into his soul. Your judgment is unfounded.

Teresa said...

I was not talking about War in and of itself. I was talking about the decisions prior to War. I stated national security which does not always have to include War. I specifically talked about strategies which may refer to the handling of foreign policy before a War actually begins. Strategies can include trying to talk reason to a dictator to avoid War or relying on U.N. sanctions to punish or deter a certain harmful act from happening from a regime.
I judge Obama by his past and present actions and words, in regard to both his policy making and his personal life history. Has any other President in history made a speech on almost every single day of his Presidency? I listen carefully to his liberal jargin and how he makes policy speeches and he makes them all about "me". I judge him based on his promoting the culture of death. Obama wants to compromise on issues related to "good" and "evil" and has a blame U.S. mentality so I have the right to judge him on that basis. Obama even called the U.S. and its citizens arrogant. I guess it takes one to know one.

Bush was a good and kind hearted President that had a love of country that Obama has not displayed. If and when Obama displays his love for country I will be much less judgmental of him. If he does a total 180 degree shift on life issues than I will be far less critical of him. If Bush displayed any of these qualities or positions than I would have been critical of him also. Bush promoted a policy based on freedom and freeing the Iraqi people from a cruel dictator. Obama seems to me that he thrives on power in and of itself and the evidence is in him taking control of private entities within the U.S. He has taken over 2 car companies and some banks even forcing CEO's to resign in order to promote his union policies.

I do believe that there is a difference between a just war and an unjust war. But the decisions and strategy planning that occurs before a war begins does not wholly in and of itself determine whether a war is just or not. Several other factors come into play to determine whether a war is just or not in regard to the Catholic Church.
Is it anyone's right to determine that all U.S. citizens should suffer evil rather than defend its country against our enemies? If The U.S had another terrorist attack and it was proven that the terrorists were trained by Saddam Hussein would you say that Bush failed to protect the citizens or would it be considered okay because American citizens suffered great evil and harm and the U.S. did not commit harm? Or did the President have an obligation to protect American citizens? Would you say Bush should have defended the nation before being attacked again? Or would he be considered just in his decision making, since he did not harm but promoted peace and relied on other nations to act peacefully?

Do you believe a just war is possible?

Kyle R. Cupp said...

National security is a broader category than war and one in which wars of national defense fall under. Whatever you say of national security generally is logically applicable to wars fought for national defense. If anything goes in national defense, then anything goes in wars of national defense. That is why I interpret your words as I did.

You wrote:

“I judge Obama by his past and present actions and words, in regard to both his policy making and his personal life history. Has any other President in history made a speech on almost every single day of his Presidency? I listen carefully to his liberal jargin [sic] and how he makes policy speeches and he makes them all about "me". I judge him based on his promoting the culture of death. Obama wants to compromise on issues related to "good" and "evil" and has a blame U.S. mentality so I have the right to judge him on that basis. Obama even called the U.S. and its citizens arrogant. I guess it takes one to know one.”

These are just unsubstantiated assertions, not evidence of anything, certainly not narcissism. Your claim that Obama’s policy speeches are all about himself is plainly false.

“Bush was a good and kind hearted President that had a love of country that Obama has not displayed. If and when Obama displays his love for country I will be much less judgmental of him.”

This is a slanderous thing to say, Teresa. Judge his policies, words, and actions all you want, but it is wrong of you to infer that Obama has no love for his country.

“Obama seems to me that he thrives on power in and of itself and the evidence is in him taking control of private entities within the U.S. He has taken over 2 car companies and some banks even forcing CEO's to resign in order to promote his union policies.”

It does not logically follow from this evidence that Obama thrives on power in and of itself.

“Is it anyone's right to determine that all U.S. citizens should suffer evil rather than defend its country against our enemies?”

Yes.

“If The U.S had another terrorist attack and it was proven that the terrorists were trained by Saddam Hussein would you say that Bush failed to protect the citizens or would it be considered okay because American citizens suffered great evil and harm and the U.S. did not commit harm?”

I would judge the president based on the moral law. I wouldn’t consider an attack on the U.S. okay, but nor would I condone a response to the attack (or attempted prevention of it) if such a response violated the moral law.

“Or did the President have an obligation to protect American citizens?”

I have already answered this question. The president does have an obligation to protect the citizens, but that is not his only or even his greatest obligation.

“Would you say Bush should have defended the nation before being attacked again?”

I have no problem with the president defending the country so long as he uses prudent and just means of defense.

“Do you believe a just war is possible?”

Theoretically, yes. See our conversation on my blog for a fuller answer.

Kyle R. Cupp said...

I have tried to answer the questions you have asked me, and if I missed any, please point them out. I am still waiting for you to answer a number of my questions, both here and at my place. I hope to get responses from you.

Teresa said...

Kyle,

In response to my question “Is it anyone's right to determine that all U.S. citizens should suffer evil rather than defend its country against our enemies?”

You answered, "Yes."

I connect that with a previous comment:

"From a Catholic standpoint, it is better to suffer evil than to commit evil, so therefore the president, from this standpoint, has a greater obligation not to do evil (i.e., to justice) than he has to protect Americans."

In reply, I assert that it does not seem to follow from the moral that an individual should rather suffer evil personally than to commit it that someone who is charged with the protection of others should fail in his charge rather than use all the necessary means to protect those under his protection. A man should turn the other cheek, but he may only turn his own. The president cannot rightly disregard his duty to protect the American people.

"Knowing how something feels is not a prerequisite for sound moral judgment."

Not knowing how something feels certainly affords one no advantage.

"I am still waiting for you to answer a number of my questions, both here and at my place. I hope to get responses from you."

Well, I'll go through the postings and comments a third time to see what I missed.

Kyle R. Cupp said...

Teresa,

Turning the other cheek has nothing to do with this discussion. You and I both agree that the president has the obligation to protect the country. We disagree on what means the president may use.

My position is that the president may not use every means available to protect the country, but only those means that meet the requirements of the law, both the laws of man which he has sworn and oath to uphold, and the eternal moral law on which the laws of man should be based. The president may not do evil, even for a good cause.

Your position is that the president may use every means necessary to protect the country, including means that violate the laws of man and the eternal law. Your position is that the president may do evil if that evil keeps the country safe. Your position is that the eternal law does not apply to the president so long as the president intends to keep us safe. (If this is not your position, then you need to clarify, for this position is what you have communicated).

By asking the president to use any means necessary to keep us safe, you are asking him to put his and others souls in jeopardy to keep us physically safe. You are asking him to put your material salvation above his eternal salvation.

If you answer no other question of mine, please answer this one: How can you, as a faithful Catholic, ask other people to put your material salvation above their eternal salvation? How can you ask them to risk their souls to save your life?

Teresa said...

Kyle,
since you used the classical moral saying "It is better to suffer evil than to do it", I used the Biblical illustration of that same idea - turning the other cheek. It seems to me that turning the other cheek exemplifies the statement "It is better to suffer evil rather than to do it."

We are not disagreeing about whether the President may commit evil in order to protect us. I said he must do all that is necessary. Is it your position that evil is ever necessary? If not, then there was no need to conclude that I was advocating that a President do evil in order to save my life. Your question is off base. I did not say "including means that violate the laws of man and the eternal law." That was your assumption.

We are disagreeing about whether EITs are instrincally evil, and all your arguments assume that they are. As I have stated also on your blog, I do not believe that they are intrinsically evil, so my position is consistent, and is in no way in violation of my conscience as a Catholic.

Kyle R. Cupp said...

Teresa,

Clearly, what may be necessary for a certain end may also be evil. The scenario I posed to you on my blog illustrates this fact: in order save millions of people, it may be necessary to torture an innocent person. Necessary doesn’t mean moral. It just means that it is required for a certain end. The means and end may be good or bad. It may be necessary for a woman to abort her child in order to save her life, but that necessity doesn’t mean the abortion is moral. It just means it’s the required action for that end.

Therefore, it was not merely my assumption that when you say “by any means necessary” you mean means both good and evil. That was the meaning of your words, although it apparently wasn’t the meaning you intended. So really, you don’t think the president can use any means necessary to save the country. He can only use moral means.

As for the other discussion on interrogation methods, my arguments do not assume their evil. If they did, they would be assertions, not arguments. Rather, my arguments come to the conclusion that what you call EITs constitute torture and are evil.

One question of mine you have not answered is why the techniques you and the communists call EITs have historically been considered torture, even by the U.S. government. Why has waterboarding, for example, been considered a torture technique throughout history? It was called torture in the Spanish Inquisition, when the communists used it, when the Japanese used in WWII, and many other cases. If you want to say that waterboarding is not torture, then you need to show why the historical and legal precedent has up till now been wrong. The same goes for the other techniques.

Anonymous said...

I think the problem with most, if not all, things today (particularly POLITICS) is relativism. We live in a society today that is able to "JUSTIFY" *anything* in an attempt to clear the consciences they THINK they have. If people DID have REAL consciences, they would know that there is ONE ABSOLUTE TRUTH. Truth is TRUTH and changes NOT. It remains true whether folks believe it's true or not ... and a lie or falsehood or wrong choice or MIS-SPEAK is still UNTRUE no matter HOW many believe it!
It's time folks really put on their thinking caps to determine how much they REALLY BELIEVE and how much they're being made to think they embrace. Time to figure out if you're PEOPLE or SHEEPLE, following a charismatic leader that himself is being led. Like that tv commercial : WAKE UP PEOPLE!!!!

Teresa said...

For these acts to be intrinsically evil, the EIT's must be considered evil in every possible scenario.

In the ticking time bomb scenario these EIT's are considered acceptable for use in order to prevent an imminent threat, so these techniques are NOT always considered evil. The only way that these EIT's are considered evil are if they are performed on an innocent human being.

For it to be intrinsically evil the act must always be considered evil. This does not apply to the use of EIT's.In my. opinion the use of EIT's is not intrinsically evil.

Even, Senator John McCain who is against torture thinks that EIT's are accetable to use in the ticking time bomb scenario or where there is an imminent threat against U.S. and it is needed to save Americans in a short time frame.

Kyle,
Hopefully I answered some questions you and others asked me on your blog. I was letting S.Rich respond to some questions directed at both of us since he was doing a good job of arguing his case which is in effect my case also.

Anonymous said...

Seems to me there's a huge difference between a woman aborting her child and a terrorist being tortured to extract information that might save thousands or millions of citizens ... Let's compare.

Abortion: A woman is pregnant and doesn't want the baby for ANY REASON, so she decides to abort because she has convinced herself it's just a "blob of tissue" and not a real person. ALTERNATIVES? YES - adoption. She doesn't have to keep the child AND perhaps a childless couple can have their dreams and prayers realized by adopting that WOULD BE ABORTED CHILD.
TORTURE: While not my first choice of action for extracting information, lets examine what hangs in the balance and if there are any viable alternatives at all.
OK: We have intel that an attack will be forthcoming on a certain city ... we have a 'terrorist' from the same 'organization' in our grips ... we need information to potentially save THOUSANDS OR MILLIONS OF PEOPLE ... what to do, what to do???
1.Serve him coffee and donuts while nicely and calmly explaining the importance of disclosing the information in order to save lives (that he's bound to destroy).
2.Not let him watch any TV for 6 months unless he tells us what we want to know. AND we have to HOPE that the attacks do NOT occur within that time frame or we tell him that we'll be FORCED to tack on ANOTHER 6 mos of no TV for him.
3.Use what ever means possible to extract the information ASAP to avert disaster for OUR SOIL.

Hmmmm ... what is your choice???
I have my choice and I'm the AncientSoul that KNOWS the right answer .. along with teresamerica that is! *wiggles brows*

Kyle R. Cupp said...

Teresa,

You assert but do not make an argument that enhanced interrogation techniques do not qualify as intrinsically evil acts. You have yet to answer the objections to your assertions.

You also have yet to show why the Roman Catholic Church in the Second Vatican Council was wrong to condemn “torments inflicted on body or mind” and “attempts to coerce the will itself.” These are what enhanced interrogation techniques do. You defend as legitimate in some circumstances what the Church condemns outright.

Teresa said...

The Church in Gaudium et Spes is referring to the violation of innocent persons and does not mention this application to criminals or terrorists. These enhanced interrogation techniques were investigated by the Bush administration lawyers, and they deemed these techniques to be both legal and safe in their use against terrorists. Now, under the Obama administration these techniques are considered to be "wrong" in the use in order to gain information against terrorists, and have been stopped in there use from hence forward. A law that is enacted now cannot ever be applied retroactively. That is exactly what Obama and his administration is doing by leaving the door open for prosecutions. The administration is applying a law enacted now to previous actions that were deemed legal under the Bush administration. That is illegal, under the law. And if Obama's administration does that, he will be setting a very dangerous precedent for ALL laws in the future, regarding average citizens.

Kyle R. Cupp said...

“The Church in Gaudium et Spes is referring to the violation of innocent persons and does not mention this application to criminals or terrorists.”

Where in the paragraph in which the document talks of tormenting the mind or body and coercing the will does it indicate that its discussion pertains only to innocent people?

I read G et S as condemning these actions regardless on whom they are administered. The relevant passage in the document is as follows: “Furthermore, whatever is opposed to life itself, such as any type of murder, genocide, abortion, euthanasia or wilful self-destruction, whatever violates the integrity of the human person, such as mutilation, torments inflicted on body or mind, attempts to coerce the will itself; whatever insults human dignity, such as subhuman living conditions, arbitrary imprisonment, deportation, slavery, prostitution, the selling of women and children; as well as disgraceful working conditions, where men are treated as mere tools for profit, rather than as free and responsible persons; all these things and others of their like are infamies indeed. They poison human society, but they do more harm to those who practice them than those who suffer from the injury. Moreover, they are supreme dishonor to the Creator.”

The document condemns as infamous, poisonous, spiritually harmful, and dishonorable to God whatever is opposed to life itself, whatever violates the integrity of the human person, and whatever insults human dignity. The acts of torture and enhanced interrogation techniques inflict torment and coerce the will. Therefore, torture and EITs violate the integrity of the human person. The intention behind these actions doesn’t change its effects, and it is the effects upon the one tortured or subject to EITs that violate the integrity. The effects are the same on the innocent and the guilty alike. Both the guilty and the innocent find themselves tormented and their wills coerced. Therefore, both the guilty and innocent have their integrity violated. Whatever violates the integrity of the human person is condemned by this document. Therefore, both torture and EITs (assuming they are different), because they always violate the integrity of the human person, are condemned.

As you mentioned at my place, you interpret the document differently. I have supported my interpretation with the text. Can you support yours? Or can you show why my argument is unsound?

Teresa said...

Kyle,
In your interpretation you are reading what Gaudium et Spes says as a blamket statement and have not proven your argument to me. I believe that you are stretching both the words that are there, and nonexistent words to try and support you interpretation. But, The words that are not in Gaudium et Spes and are not referenced in regard to criminals.

If a person does violating their own dignity to there own peson as self by being willing to blow up themselves in the name of Jihad or ALLAH, than there can be nothing worse than them being willing to commit suicide. These EIT's, in my opinion, are not torture. By using the EIT's on these terrorists we are in fact helping them to regain their dignity by helping them to reveal the truth, so that they can help the CIA save American lives.

Kyle R. Cupp said...

Teresa,

I don’t know what else to say. I’ve presented the relevant passage of the document and shown – in an argument – why the words mean what I say they do. You say you don’t accept the argument, but you don’t show how my argument is flawed. You say that stretch words and reference non-existent words to support my argument, but you don’t show how I’ve stretched words or why the non-existent words I reference are not implicit in the meaning of the text. You tell me what you believe, but you don’t show why you believe it. You assert, but you do not argue. I’ve responded to your assertions with arguments, but you just respond to my argument with assertions. With all due respect, if you are not going to make an argument for your interpretation, what is the point to continuing this discussion?

Teresa said...

I have presented my argument with legitimate reasons behind it. Just because you disagree with my reasoning doesn't mean that I have not argued my case. We simply have a disagreement. I am suggesting that we just agree to disagree on this issue.God Bless :)