I am one of the “Cheeto-eating people in the basement working in their underwear.” At least that is the way the White House has characterized me because I am anti-war. I am not just against perpetual war, the road that the United States has been traveling for far too long. I am against all wars. The only benefit war has ever brought is to enrich the already wealthy. World War II is the exception that proves that rule, although it did enrich the already wealthy; as anyone who is serious about History knows, Russia won that war at a great cost and with very little help from the United States and Britain. The latter was much more concerned with keeping its empire intact and we went along to help them do that.
On, February 5, 2013, a secret Justice Department white paper was released, which detailed another, in a long series, of alarming jurisprudential ideas being swiftly set in stone by the Obama Administration. With this latest move the President of the United States can:
- detain and torture people
- execute American Citizens without indictment or trial
- geography doesn’t matter in the execution of anyone
- ThePresident of The United States can perform the above without any concrete intelligence or evidence suggesting an American Citizen is involved in any way, no matter how tangental, to terrorist activity.
There are several words in the above list that give me, a former English professor, pause. They are: “suggesting,” “involved,” “terrorist,” and “activity.” The words are what we call “abstractions,” which are so general they are meaningless. One can use them to describe anything.
There is no outrage over this. After all, President Obama has targeted and executed thousands of people, including three American Citizens: Anwar al-Awlaki, Samir Khan, and Abdulraham al-Awlaki. Executing people under any circumstance is morally wrong. Executing American Citizens without any due process is illegal. It’s called murder and in many states, including California, it carries the death penalty. When the President of the United States murders three American Citizens it meets the definition of a High Crime. It’s shocking that the Democrats aren’t screaming impeachment.
Anwar al-Awlaki and Samir Khan were suspected of being Al Qaeda and it’s been reported that they renounced their American Citizenship, but nothing was ever proven in a court room.
Abdulraham al-Awlaki was sixteen years old.
President Obama killed a sixteen year old with a missile fired from a drone.
He was a boy who hadn’t seen his father in two years, since his father had gone into hiding. He was a boy who knew his father was on an American kill list and who snuck out of his family’s home in the early morning hours of September 4, 2011, to try to find him. He was a boy who was still searching for his father when his father was killed, and who, on the night he himself was killed, was saying goodbye to the second cousin with whom he’d lived while on his search, and the friends he’d made. He was a boy among boys, then; a boy among boys eating dinner by an open fire along the side of a road when an American drone came out of the sky and fired the missiles that killed them all. — Tom Junod
I understand why your average American isn’t outraged by this. It’s because the three people have Middle-Eastern names. You assume anyone with a name like that is a Muslim and an enemy of the State. Even 16-year-olds who are eating dinner with their friends, by the side of the road, on a moonlit night. And don’t kid yourselves, the gender of the 16-year-old doesn’t matter. We’ll take out 16-year-old girls with a missile as quickly as boys.
But your average American should be outraged by this. Your average American should be screaming for our current President’s head, because we’re not really talking about names that might belong to a Muslim. Not by a long shot. We’re talking about due process. We’re talking about the notion that everyone deserves a fair trial where they are confronted with the evidence against them, and where they are represented by competent legal council in open court. We are talking about how the Obama Administration is removing our right to due process, how it is perverting the Constitution, and how it is codifying the notion that the President of the United States can order the death of citizens anywhere in the world without any evidence of wrong doing.
In other words, this week we’re killing people with Middle-Eastern names. How long until they aim a drone’s missile at homes in this country and start taking out the “Cheeto-eating people in the basement working in their underwear?”