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Justice Means Sometimes Having to Say You're Sorry

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October 6, 2009

The New Yorker’s Amy Davidson points out a fatal flaw in the administration’s justification for continued detentions at Guantánamo:

The difficulty in releasing him was that he might be mad at us for holding him unjustly? How is that solved by continuing to hold him unjustly? Wouldn’t he just get madder? Sometimes our government acts like one of those guys who doesn’t want to tell his wife he’s been fired so he leaves in his suit every morning and lets her carry on until she suddenly learns that the house is in foreclosure and the credit cards don’t work.

Could America stop being that guy already?

Guantánamo will continue to be a stain on the country for as long as we continue to unjustly hold people without charge or trial. It doesn’t make us any safer; in fact, it makes us less safe. Close Guantánamo, charge those who we have enough evidence against, and release those who we continue to hold for no good reason. “Too difficult to charge; too dangerous to release” sells our Constitution, and all Americans, short.