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Subject: I disagree on torture

I have to respectfully disagree with you on torture; based on the available data.
First, not torturing saves lives, as evidenced from our actions in wars from 1776 through WWII,
Hessians knew we didn’t torture, so they surrendered and many settled here based on treatment
they received. George Washington certainly would’ve been justified in revenge based on the
atrocities the Brits were doing to us, but he took the high ground and did not torture. Similarly,
the Germans in WWII were taught to surrender to Americans, as they would be treated humanely.

On the flip side, torturing costs thousands of lives, based on Pentagon reports. Captured insurgents
in Iraq stated that the number one reason they were inspired to fight (and kill US troops with IEDs etc.),
was based on Abu Ghraib photos and reports of waterboarding and other forms of torture.

The emotional appeal of the “24” type scenario also doesn’t hold water, as any group with the skill
to pull off such a plot would also likely have suitable contingency plans, i.e. if one of their henchmen
was picked up, and didn’t respond (or check in) in an appropriate time frame, then the others would
then move the bomb assuming that one of the group had been caught, and would talk.

Finally, there’s the slippery slope argument. If you can justify torture based on saving kids on a bus,
or citizens in Gotham, why not torture suspected child abusers, war protesters, or critics of the powerful?

That was the original point that we never got to.
I expected people to say, "A broken finger or two to save a large city is OK,
but broken arms and legs to find a stolen car is going too far."
In my opinion, the Left tends to panic when they hear the T-word - that's illogical.

In short, we should not torture because the benefits are negligible to non-existent, and the costs are
astronomical, and we as a society would be diminished if not destroyed by becoming what we fear most.

How’s that for an argument that didn’t get personal or abusive?
I agree with you on pretty much everything else, and don’t have a perfect liberal score,
as I am pro gun (but can’t afford one) and for expanding the death penalty (for white collar criminals!)
  John in San Antonio, Texas

I disagree with most of the "conventional wisdom" about torture.
I'm not saying torture works, but it can work and if lives are at stake, why not try to save them?

Your first sentence tells me you'd let New York be destroyed.
I think eight million lives is a high price to pay for "principle."

Our opinions are different - I can live with that :)


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