Friday, June 13, 2008

Why Does John McCain Hate Our Freedoms?

Image credit: National Archives

You can't make this stuff up. Well, you could, but no on would believe it. Steve Benen gives us the outline:

The Supreme Court ruled yesterday, in a narrow 5-4 decision, to extend access to the federal courts to detainees at Guantanamo Bay. When reporters asked John McCain for his reaction a few hours later, he struck a disappointed note, but seemed pretty level-headed about the case. “[I]t is a decision that the Supreme Court has made,” McCain said. “Now we need to move forward. As you know I always favored closing Guantanamo Bay and I still think we ought to do that.”
Apparently, though, moderation didn’t poll well overnight. Today, McCain quickly embraced the far-right line and denounced the ruling in the strongest of terms.

John McCain weighed in on the U.S. Supreme Court decision on the rights of Guantanamo Bay prisoners to challenge their detention in U.S. courts at a town hall meeting Friday, calling the 5-4 decision “one of the worst decisions in the history of this country.”

McCain said he that while he has been a vocal opponent of torture and advocated closing Guantanamo, he does not believe prisoners deserve the same rights as U.S. citizens.

“These are enemy combatants, these are people who are not citizens, they are not and never have been given the rights that the citizens of this country have,” he said. “Our first obligation is the safety and security of this nation and the men and women who defend it.”

Remember the good ol’ days? Before John McCain became a shameless hack? Good times, good times.

McCain sees detainee ruling as ‘one of the worst decisions in the history of this country’

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Of course, this article might have been entitled "Even More Proof That John McCain Is Crazy", but I'm sure I'll get to use that title before too long. This sort of about face is hardly new. The about faces usually take a little longer, though.

Of course, the other reason it's crazy is that, instead of lauding this as a victory for civil rights in times of trouble, he called it "one of the worst decision in the history of this country". Let's review some of the decisions that the Supreme Court has made in the past, and some of the consequences:

  • Korematsu v. United States -- 1944 - Japanese-Americans had to stay in concentration camps, even though they did nothing wrong. Many lost their land and property while the were interned. A few were killed.

  • Plessy v. Ferguson -- 1896 - A.K.A. "Separate but equal". The Reconstruction went on for decades.

  • Dred Scott v. Sanford -- 1857 - A.K.A. "You got a problem with slavery?" The Civil War.

That list came courtesy of an e-mail I received from People For The American Way this morning, but I'm sure you can add a few others, like Schneck vs. the United States, or Bush Vs. Gore.

Yet when this Supreme Court stood up for freedom and limited government, which are supposedly what conservatives are all about, John McCain called it one of the worst decisions ever.

So, I repeat, why does John McCain hate our freedoms?

(h/t to Dana Hunter whose article pointed to the Steve Benen article.)

UPDATE: On a whim, I searched for the string "worst supreme court decisions" and came up with several lists. One interesting one, from a libertarian complaining about the conservative nature of a list at Human Events cited Bush Vs. Gore as one of the worst. He wrote that the Court should have known better than to decide it. He's got a point there. In his honor, I've added it to my own list, for his reasons plus my own.

Of course, the list at Human Events mentioned Roe Vs. Wade as one of them. While I don't agree with that, it was certainly a decision that you'd think John McCain would have in mind when he was talking about how the SCOTUS has screwed up.


KipEsquire said...

I am not a conservative.

Cujo359 said...

Umm, yes, you're right. ;)

Sorry, I'll change the wording a bit.