The recent report of torture carried out by the CIA adds to what I believe to be the mounting evidence of moral bankruptcy, disregard for human rights and a disturbing lack of responsible leadership in the highest levels of the American government. There is simply no justification for torture.
With the willing assistance of the national media, I believe the government continues to dupe us into a frenzy of fear — fear of terrorism, ISIS, immigrants, the enemy country or individual of the moment, etc. We buy into fear and are rewarded with “enhanced interrogation techniques,” Abu Ghraib, Guantanamo, invasion of Iraq and Afghanistan, drones, bombing in Syria and Pakistan, loss of privacy, the militarization of local police departments, looking the other way while partner countries repeatedly violate human rights, insinuating American “interests” into the affairs of countless nations, and so on. We have no business complaining about beheading when we do equally heinous deeds ourselves.
I believe we must hold elected and appointed government officials to the highest ethical standards, with the expectation that those who were in any way connected to the CIA torture program will be identified and prosecuted. We the people must speak out fearlessly and repeatedly in support of human rights, so that America can regain at least some semblance of a moral compass.