A new NYT/CBS poll contains some startling results on detainee treatment.
A new NYT/CBS News poll just released today asked a question designed to test support for Obama’s proposal to indefinitely detain Guantanamo detainees without charges — and it found overwhelming opposition to that plan (click to enlarge):
The view that detainees should be charged with crimes or released is often depicted as the fringe “Far Left” view. Like so many views that are similarly depicted, it is — in reality — the overwhelming consensus view among Americans (68%). As is so often the case, it is the view depicted as the Serious Centrist position — the U.S. should keep people in cages for as long as it wants without charging them with any crime — that is the fringe view held by only a small minority (24%). While some may express surprise at the outcome of this question, it really shouldn’t be surprising: Americans are taught from childhood that one of the primary distinctions between free countries and tyrannies is that, in the former, the state lacks the power to imprison people without charging and convicting them of a crime. Is it really that surprising that an overwhelming majority of Americans see such charge-free imprisonment as wrong even when it comes to Guantanamo detainees, probably the single most dehumanized group on the planet?
Along the same lines — and for the same reason — Obama is clearly winning the debate over whether to close Guantanamo, as more and more Americans (now a clear plurality) favor its closing as the debate progresses (click to enlarge):
If the right arguments are made about adherence to these values, they obviously resonate. It would be good if the President who campaigned on a platform to restore those values would make such arguments more often, and even better still if he ceased advocating policies — indefinite preventive detention — that so violently undermine them.
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Lisa Montgomery embraces her nephew Thursday after a tornado tore apart her home in Cleburne, Texas. The twister killed six people and destroyed entire swaths of the North Texas town.
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Jack McMahon, the defense attorney for abortion doctor Kermit Gosnell, speaks outside the Criminal Justice Center in Philadelphia Tuesday. His client was convicted of killing three babies in his clinic, and will serve multiple life sentences.
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A photo taken Monday captures Vice President Joe Biden's response to a Milwaukee second-grader's innovative proposal to end America's epidemic of gun violence. This guy!
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Sen. Rand Paul, R-Ky., flanked by a grouper-eyed Michele Bachmann, addresses the IRS' admission that it targeted Tea Party groups in advance of the 2012 election. In an op-ed for CNN Thursday, the Kentucky senator slammed the president for his faux outrage.
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Ousted IRS chief Steven Miller is sworn in on Capitol Hill Friday. Miller testified before the House Ways and Means Committee on the extra scrutiny the agency gave conservative groups applying for tax-exempt status.
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Attorney General Eric Holder pauses as he testifies on Capitol Hill before the House Judiciary Committee Wednesday. Holder is under fire, among other things, for the Justice Department's gathering of phone records at the Associated Press.
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O.J. Simpson sits during an evidentiary hearing at Clark County District Court in Las Vegas, Nev., Thursday. Simpson, who is currently serving a nine-to-33-year sentence in state prison for armed robbery and kidnapping, is using a writ of habeas corpus to seek a new trial.
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Major Tom to ground control: On Sunday astronaut Chris Hadfield recorded the first music video from space, a cover of David Bowie's "Space Oddity."
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When it rains it pours. President Barack Obama speaks during a news conference Thursday with Turkish Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan, inexplicably inspiring an #umbrellagate Twitter meme.
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A smoke plume rises high above a road block at the intersection of County A and Ross Road east of Solon Springs, Wis., Tuesday. No injuries were reported, but the the wildfire caused evacuations across northwestern Wisconsin.
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