Law vs Lives

Discussion in 'Religion and Ethics' started by Wiseacre, Jan 7, 2012.

  1. Wiseacre
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    Wiseacre Retired USAF Chief Supporting Member

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    There's a thread in the Politics forum about closing Gitmo and releasing the detainees. For this issue and related ones, does the question come down to following the law or risking lives?

    Laws exist to protect the citizenry; that is their purpose. No right is more important than the right to life, how can a responsible government allow an avowed terrorist to be freed to continue to do murder?

    No society has 100% civil rights, there must be limits for the common good. Free speech is a great thing, but you can't go into a crowded theater and holler "FIRE"!". And so it is that an individual's right to due process can and should be limited if there is a reasonable chance that the person may engage in harmful activities. It is that reasoning that allows us to imprison enemy combatants in a declared war. The same reasoning should apply to enemy combatants in an undeclared war, which describes the Gitmo detainees.

    It may be that we have no good alternatives here. It's true that the right to due process should not be abridged, whther the accused is an American citizen or not. But it is also true that lives are worth more than laws; laws exist to protect lives, not the other way around.
     
  2. justathought
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    justathought Member

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    Lives are worth more than laws you say? That sounds like the motto of drug dealers I used to know in explaining their behavior when it comes to feeding their children.
     
    Last edited: Jan 8, 2012
  3. Wiseacre
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    Wiseacre Retired USAF Chief Supporting Member

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    C'mon dude, there's a big difference between upholding the law for drug dealers and keeping terrorists in Gitmo without a trial.
     
  4. HUGGY
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    HUGGY I Post Because I Care Supporting Member

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    Fear mongering is so Bush era Sport. Lots of things kill people. You should be more concerned with automobiles and dangerous conditions in the home... or lightning...,accidental drowning,.....forgetting to take prescribed meds..or drug and alcohol abuse.

    Now that it is darn near impossible to hyjack an airplane and we know that the real reason the 9/11 guys succeded was ineptitude on the part of the FBI, CIA and the State department... you should try to scare everyone with something more practical....like drunk drivers....which have killed a couple hundred thousand Americans since 9/11..I mean if you are really concerned about Americans un-neccessarily dying violent deaths.
     
  5. Wiseacre
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    Wiseacre Retired USAF Chief Supporting Member

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    So it's fearmongering to be concerned over terrorist attempts to kill hundreds or thousands of innocent Americans? I see no reason to increase the odds any, but that's just my opinion.

    Maybe you should address the central question of the thread: laws are created by a society to protect it's citizens. Some limits may need to be in place for security reasons. If the tradeoff is denying a person due process vs a bunch of dead Americans, I'd rather save lives.
     
  6. justathought
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    justathought Member

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    This isn't minority report with Tom Cruise. If there is no evidence, then a prisoner of war goes home when the war is over. Did the vietnemese release our soldiers at the end of the war or did they go through due process?
     
  7. justathought
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    justathought Member

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    Obviously if it's a 911 conspirator, it is different than a foot soldier of Fallujah.
     
  8. HUGGY
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    HUGGY I Post Because I Care Supporting Member

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    In a word...yes.

    Our maximum security prisons located all over the continental U S are totally capable of holding dangerous people. I for one had had enough fear mongering by 10/11. But that's just me. There will always be reasons for the frightened among our population to be persuaded to throw away rights for perceived safety.

    Benjamin Franklin had cowardly punks like D*ick Cheney in mind when he
    said that those who trade liberty for SAFETY deserve neither liberty nor safety
     
  9. C_Clayton_Jones
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    C_Clayton_Jones Diamond Member

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    A responsible government would have tried suspected terrorists timely, in Federal court. An irresponsible government forfeits the authority to hold detainees indefinitely – if released and terrorist do harm again, it’s the fault of the irresponsible government, not the terrorists.

    The concern for due process and the rule of law has noting to do with those accused, it is to benefit law-abiding citizens and ensure their civil liberties. Strict adherence to due process and the rule of law gives society the moral authority to punish those convicted of committing a crime, to take away their freedom, or even to take away their lives.
     
  10. Care4all
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    Care4all Warrior Princess Supporting Member

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    we are a nation of laws....a nation built on law....not a nation of lives.

    if they are as dangerous and as guilty AS CLAIMED, then what's the problem with trying them for their crimes? What have I missed?
     

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