I am planning the violent overthrow of the United States government. There, I said it.
Decide for yourself whether I’m serious or not, or whether I’m just trying to make some rhetorical point. But it no longer matters what you think or what I think, or what a grand jury or a prosecutor or a court of law might think. All that matters now is what the President of the United States thinks.
If President Bush believes that I am an enemy combatant — or merely chooses to label me as such — that is what I am. I can be held without charge. I can have my rights to habeas corpus suspended. I can be tortured.
That is the America we now live in… an America where a single man can determine who does or does not deserve the protections of our constitution. An America were some people are now presumed guilty until proven innocent.
Today, 65 US Senators disgracefully voted to give President Bush the power to abrogate the rule of law — the kind of powers normally reserved for dictators — and while Washingtonians should be proud that our two Senators, Maria Cantwell and Patty Murray, were not amongst them, we should also be ashamed to live in a nation that claims to champion liberty and freedom, yet so easily jettisons its values when they become inconvenient. Like the Japanese internment and the Alien and Sedition Acts, this will go down in American history as one of those black marks that future generations will shake their heads at in disbelief.
But if there is a lesson to be learned by the current generation, it is that we not only need more Democrats in Congress, we need better Democrats.
Okay, so let’s be clear:
SEC. 7. HABEAS CORPUS MATTERS
(e)(1) No court, justice, or judge shall have jurisdiction to hear or consider an application for a writ of habeas corpus filed by or on behalf of an alien detained by the United States who has been determined by the United States to have been properly detained as an enemy combatant or is awaiting such determination.
So the President says I’m an alien enemy combatant, or is in the process of determining if I am an alien enemy combatant. I could easily challenge the “alien” determination in a court of law, that is… assuming the court would hear a writ of habeas corpus, but they won’t, because the President has already determined that I am being properly detained under SEC.7(e)(1).