Thursday, April 2, 2009

Cruel and Unusual Punishments

Ladies and Gentlemen, it's no secret that the U.S. is holding a number of detainees in the war on terror. Note, these are detainees, mind you, not prisoners. Prisoners are tried and convicted individuals who, according to various treaties and conventions, must be treated in certain ways. As detainees, however, we are not subject to rules against cruel and unusual punishments. I believe that the U.S. is doing a fantastic job in this instance of providing a punishment that suits the unspecified crimes. And what is this punishment, you may ask. What are we using to extract our national revenge> Irony.

These detainees, who fought so hard to destroy our American way of excess and privilege, are forced to endure the same cruel privilege and excess that they railed against. That's right. These terrorists and enemy combatants who feel at home in the rigors of third-world poverty are forced to endure not two, but three, three culturally appropriate square meals a day! Oh they shame they would suffer if those at home were to learn of this. And two of these meals are hot!  From what I understand they actually must suffer the indecision Americans feel every day when bombarded by an excess of choice. The poor men at each meal must choose between four meal options! Even after a lifetime of practice at navigating the culinary world of privilege have difficultly. It's cruel and wrong to force these individuals to make such unaccustomed decisions before they can eat! We don't force other prisoners to do 1,000 push-ups or beat a super computer in a game of chess before being served, so how do we morally justify making these men, men who've had no practice at choosing what to eat, decide before we give them food> Even more cruel is that these meals are in excess of 4,000 calories! We're forcing obesity, America's epidemic of excessive comfort and wealth, upon them.

They're required to endure the horrors of hot running water. Further, these detainees can't even take pride in finding their own means to keep their government supplied holy Koran off of the floor. We give them a sling to keep it from touching the ground and then paint arrows on the floor pointing the way to Mecca. I understand this is essentially a prison without all of the Geneva Convention restrictions, but really. Must we leave these detainees with no problems to surmount so that they can hold their heads high and call themselves men> They do not need to use the stars to determine directional orientation, so that they may use their wits to prove their devotion to Allah. Likewise, they do not need to improvise clever devices from their clothing to keep their sacred scripture sacredly off of the floor. 

They need not ever exert themselves. They do not need to think too hard or work to hard. They are being turned physically and mentally into sheep, with the government giving them all of the answers they will need, telling them where they should go and what they should do, depriving them of the need to think, to reason, to earn their place in the world, to question and problem solve. They are given access to legal council and are allowed to speak on their own defense. They do not need to do an honest day's work to provide their luxury, and thus can take no true pride in what they have. They are forced to eat themselves to death with fatty foods and oversized portions the way so many of us do every day. Their punishment is the most sick and twisted I have ever seen. These men who have fought so hard to bring down the American lifestyle are forced to endure the most ironic punishment man could devise. They are forced to live like Americans. 

Geneva needs to put a stop to this sick and twisted mind game. 

You have been informed.

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