Headline: "U. S. Engaged in Torture After 9/11, Review Concludes"
The headline caught my attention the other day. The reason it caught my attention is that, a hundred years ago when I first joined Twitter, I had a debate with someone I didn't know about whether or not the practices that took place at Guantanamo were ethical. I am embarrassed to say, my position was that they were. My thinking then was that if you are working with an unreasonable person (a terrorist), you will have to use unreasonable means to try to get information out of them. I also felt that if they were willing to harm others, why shouldn't they be harmed in order to get useful information? Why should anybody care?
My "friend" asked, "Who decided these people were terrorists? They were never tried in a court of law. If we believe in abiding by the law, we should give everyone the same due process."
I thought about his arguments (we had more conversations than one) and my thoughts evolved a little even then - here is a blog post I wrote about it.
I now agree with him completely. In fact, when I saw the headline the other day, my thought was from a Christian perspective (and here I thought it was then, too). But as a Christian who has thought about visiting other countries that are not open to the Christian message, I knew that if I was ever misunderstood, I could be arrested in certain places in the world, such as the Middle East and some parts of Asia. Those prisons have a reputation of treating people very badly. At one point with a decision I was making in my life, this consideration was particularly relevant. It was a very real question to me whether or not I would be willing to suffer greatly (and physically) for my faith if it ever came to it. And my feelings about this obviously were not eager - I think it is horrible that such a threat exists in our world; to think that I could end up in a prison somewhere being tortured, in the 21st century, without fair representation or freedom under the law.
And then I thought of all the travesties of the past couple millennia carried out by the Church - the Crusades, the Inquisition, the Salem Witch Trials, etc. It is easy for me from my standpoint in America in 2013 to realize those things never should have happened, and to condemn them as deplorable. Civilized, reasonable people would never do something like that!
But then this headline....
Maybe "we" aren't as civilized or reasonable as I thought.
I do believe people must be held accountable/punished for their crimes. Law is necessary to ensure people respect each other's rights. But there is a reason there is a thing called "due process". If we believe the law of our land is generally pretty good...the law that requires punishments to be humane and a right fit for the crime...the law that claims people are innocent until proven guilty...then we should extend the courtesy of that law to all people, whether citizens or not.
I decided to participate in The 2013 Spring Green Smoothie Challenge. I am also making it a goal to make at least most of my other food intake extra healthy, too. Today we are linking up to share our experiences so far, so I thought I would share the recipe for my first smoothie, in which I decided to try something a little different... (amounts estimated):
Pineapple Kale Smoothie
1/3 cup half-and-half
1/3 cup Tropicana Farmstand juice (Strawberry Banana)
1 cup low-fat cottage cheese
1/2 cup oats
1 handful of chopped fresh kale from the farmer's market
1 cup chopped pineapple (I also threw in a real fruit pineapple popsicle I found in the freezer!)
2 teaspoons honey
It came out...okay. Not bad at all; but I'm not sure it would be a great flavor to market, either!