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No Elephants Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Aug-29-12 11:35 AM
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SEAL book raises questions about bin Laden's death
It is not about what Bin Laden "deserved" or did not deserve. It is about what the Constitution of the United States requires and whether we are under the rule of law or not. And, again, the Constitution does not differentiate between citizens and non-citizens. (This makes sense when you think that everyone who lived in the land prior to adoption of the Constitution, was a citizen of the various nations from which they had emigrated.)

Eric Holder has said that, even as to a U.S. citizen, though, the requirements of the bill of rights can be satisfied by the President's simply making a decision that someone should be executed. If so, let's go back to 1215 and tear up the magna Carta, too. For, if a ruler, regardless of how he or she is chosen, can decide to have you killed at will, what important rights do you have at all, really?

Please don't cite war. When the Constitution was written, "war" had a very specific meaning, namely nation to nation and a stupid declaration of "war on terror" did not alter that. Osama was not a nation or the head of a nation.

To his credit, Obama banned use of the nonsensical term "war on terror, but then he orders execution of alleged terrorists.

On a lesser scale, but also a very important one it is also about whether it's okay for government to lie to its citizens whenever it chooses, especially in a democracy, whose citizens must make informed decisions when they vote. Voting for fictional characters is not 'a democracy within a republic." (Use of the state secrets to cover up embarrassing behaviors by government plays into this, as does treatment of whistleblowers, but those are subjects for other posts.)

Finally, the Bill of Rights was not an afterthought, as I once assumed: Adoption of the entire Constitution--granting any power at all to the federal government--was conditional on the Bill of Rights. The Bill of Rights is NOT something to be ignored whenever convenient.

Amendment I

Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press; or the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the Government for a redress of grievances.

Amendment II

A well regulated Militia, being necessary to the security of a free State, the right of the people to keep and bear Arms, shall not be infringed.

Amendment III

No Soldier shall, in time of peace be quartered in any house, without the consent of the Owner, nor in time of war, but in a manner to be prescribed by law.

Amendment IV

The right of the people to be secure in their persons, houses, papers, and effects, against unreasonable searches and seizures, shall not be violated, and no Warrants shall issue, but upon probable cause, supported by Oath or affirmation, and particularly describing the place to be searched, and the persons or things to be seized.

Amendment V

No person shall be held to answer for a capital, or otherwise infamous crime, unless on a presentment or indictment of a Grand Jury, except in cases arising in the land or naval forces, or in the Militia, when in actual service in time of War or public danger; nor shall any person be subject for the same offence to be twice put in jeopardy of life or limb; nor shall be compelled in any criminal case to be a witness against himself, nor be deprived of life, liberty, or property, without due process of law; nor shall private property be taken for public use, without just compensation.

Amendment VI

In all criminal prosecutions, the accused shall enjoy the right to a speedy and public trial, by an impartial jury of the State and district wherein the crime shall have been committed, which district shall have been previously ascertained by law, and to be informed of the nature and cause of the accusation; to be confronted with the witnesses against him; to have compulsory process for obtaining witnesses in his favor, and to have the Assistance of Counsel for his defence.

Amendment VII

In Suits at common law, where the value in controversy shall exceed twenty dollars, the right of trial by jury shall be preserved, and no fact tried by a jury, shall be otherwise re-examined in any Court of the United States, than according to the rules of the common law.

Amendment VIII

Excessive bail shall not be required, nor excessive fines imposed, nor cruel and unusual punishments inflicted.

Amendment IX

The enumeration in the Constitution, of certain rights, shall not be construed to deny or disparage others retained by the people.

Amendment X

The powers not delegated to the United States by the Constitution, nor prohibited by it to the States, are reserved to the States respectively, or to the people.

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