Northwest Voices | Letters to the Editor
Defense bill on Obama's desk would allow suspected terrorists to be detained without trial
Posted by Letters editor
Stand up for constitutional rights
The concept of carte blanche is abhorrent to Americans and the U.S. Constitution. No one should have the power the fill in a name on a blank card and make a person disappear.
Now, however, the core of our constitutional rights are being eviscerated, and the public has barely noticed. The National Defense Authorization Act of 2012 would permit American citizens on American soil to be arrested and held by the U.S. military without a lawyer, without a trial and without the right to come before a judge under a writ of habeas corpus. [“Senate passes defense bill despite Obama’s veto threat,” News, Dec. 2.]
If you find yourself in an undisclosed location and demand a lawyer, or you want to file a writ of habeas corpus and go before a judge and demand that you be released, that will not be allowed. The government can simply make an American citizen disappear.
Where is the outrage? Is this how Americans really lose their basic, constitutionally based civil liberties? The legislation has been passed and was sent to the president on Dec. 21. President Obama has now withdrawn his veto threat.
This could become the law of the land at any time. Both the left and the right are appalled that the Constitution could be overturned and carte blanche granted to the military with hardly even a whimper.
This is not a political issue. This is a universal issue of basic American values and rights. If there ever was a time to write a polite email to the president and ask him to veto legislation, this would be it.
— Mark Gouras, Kent
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