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force of law vs. law of force

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public policy of free society


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Recently, the NY Times published four letters examining whether we should treat terrorists as criminals. No one suggested the terrorists may have a case against us. When we are bound by law ( excepting, of course, the current occupant), and we attempt to bind the terrorists by force, don't we admit their argument? Klinkenborg suggests we may never be at home in Nature because we can't possibly admit her argument against our interests, it suggests we are still an adolescent species, perhaps incapable of sustained existence in our natural habitat, fiercely defending a self-centered delusion by force majeur, too reminiscent of Prince George.
Both opinions are based on our ability to control others or our environment. Forgive the familiarity, but that is so nineties. Control is good for some purposes, not others. Driving a car, or managing a science experiment, control is essential. In human relations, control is not only counterproductive, but mutually depreciating. If we must control Nature and humanity, we will never appreciate their gift to us. Growth is stifled, innovation is lost. Nero was a child of control, Marcus Aurelius superseded his parents.
Perhaps the terrorists would have a case if there were a court of law that would stand against us. If we must kill them because we don't dare hear their argument, what, then, are we? Certainly not the America I was taught to believe in. Doesn't the argument devolve into capital versus humanity, preconceived notions versus living things? Or, as the terrorists would say, our rules against your life. Are we, then, the true terrorists? If we insist on holding our world in our clutches a simple idea can defeat us. We lose America by enforcing it. A defensible police state is not a free society. A free society is a fortress of rights and free ideas, the guarantor of a free humanity. Caesar's wife must be beyond reproach.
Martin S. Weiss
Mexico, MO

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Avid reader, jazz musician, philosopher, chef, stone mason, carpenter, writer, painter, poet,humanist, teacher, holistic ethicist who believes consciousness and love pervade the universe, except among self-obsessed humans. I perceive the (more...)
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