Thursday, May 27, 2004

Brother's Keeper, Part II

Belle's got a post up at CT about the FBI retracting its fingerprint-based allegations against Muslim convert and advocate Brandon Mayfield.

I know the Constitution isn’t a suicide pact, and it doesn’t seem unreasonable for the FBI to focus on adherents of Islam rather than, say, Lutherans when fighting extremist Islamic terrorism. Unfortunately, it doesn’t seem as if the government knows how to “only sort of” violate your rights. The dial goes all the way to eleven, right from the start.
It is one of the misfortunes of history that September 11th occurred during the Bush administration which, even before that day, has consistently placed expedience and politics above principle. The Bush administration has time and again demonstrated its failure to grasp that, in a war at least as dependent on public opinion as force, any deviation from the utmost scrupulousness effectively hands our enemies a victory.