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Missing the Point

Letter to the Editor | Tuesday, January 27, 2009

Dear Mr. Smith,

Even if any hot girls ignored your request and decided to read the entirety of your article (“Uphold Constitution”Jan. 26), I don’t think you are in danger of being regarded as an intellectual. In the letter you claim offended you so much (“Objectivity please,”?Jan. 23), Furtado never even asserts his own opinion on whether the facility at Guantanamo Bay should ultimately be closed. He simply expressed a desire to read about both sides of the issue in The Observer.

Nevertheless, you managed to infer from the letter that the author denies the existence of innocents at Guantanamo, rejects global warming and does not believe in evolution.

Further, you suggest that Furtado is somehow responsible for our failing economy. Surely anyone who does not believe that global warming is, as you ironically proclaimed, a “cold, sober fact,” cannot hold a valid opinion about any important issue. The miniscule portion of your response that was not devoted to defending your “carefully constructed persona” or personally attacking the author still failed to make a convincing argument. The Constitution is in no way being “cavalierly” dispensed of, as only U.S. citizens are afforded its protection. Torture is used to obtain information, not as a deterrent.

I don’t blame you for mistakenly asserting that “Even the Nazis got habeas corpus.” After all, President Obama made the same claim while campaigning in Pennsylvania last summer. However, the Nazis were not afforded habeas corpus at Nuremberg. The criminals were tried in an international military tribunal, not a U.S. court, an important distinction in itself. More significantly, the Nazis did not have the right to challenge their detention, which is the very definition of habeas corpus.

It is tragic to hear about innocent people who have been detained at Guantanamo. The torture of innocents is indeed unacceptable. This is the best, and perhaps the only valid point you make in your letter. Unfortunately, you were unable to avoid the “spin and distortion” you so nobly condemned. Although you might personally believe the issue of whether or not to close Guantanamo is not up for debate, there is certainly a discussion to be had.

I, like Furtado, would like to see this discussion take place objectively in The Observer.

Mike Sullivan


Zahm Hall

Jan 26