The Colorado Springs Gazette published a letter from me today, which they titled, “It’s shameful that Lamborn cares so little for rule of law.” I wrote the letter in response to our national representative Doug Lamborn’s opinion piece in the paper on June 25 (which I unfortunately can’t seem to find online).
The Gazette cut out half a sentence in the first paragraph. Here’s the letter as I wrote it.
Representative Doug Lamborn (“Detainees show our need for Gitmo,” Other Voices, June 25) is quite certain that all the prisoners in Guantanamo Bay are terrorists intent on destroying the United States. His primary rationale seems to be that some Guantanamo prisoners in the past have “returned to the battlefield” after being released. This logic is fundamentally flawed: We can’t arbitrarily assume the guilt of one person based on the behavior of another. Luckily, Lamborn’s assessment is irrelevant. Thanks to the recent Supreme Court decision, these prisoners, some of whom have been held without being officially charged with any crime for six years, will see their day in court. They will be able to hear the evidence against them and will be able to defend themselves under the rule of law in this country.
Furthermore, Lamborn’s platitudes about the treatment of the prisoners (we let them pray and we don’t even torture them!) are missing the point. The problem is not just their treatment, but the basic fact of their interminable imprisonment without being convicted, or even accused, of a crime. It’s outrageous to see a member of our congress cavalierly arguing that we should violate our Constitution simply because he believes that these people are guilty. Lamborn says, “We are foolishly treating a mortal struggle as a criminal prosecution and not as a war.” No, we are wisely showing the world that we can defend ourselves while maintaining the fundamental ethics enshrined in our Constitution.