The point is that there are a lot of reasons you might have been fighting on the side of terrorists. It doesn't make you a monster (necessarily) or nonhuman. It might make you terribly ignorant, or you might be a victim of the Talibanís draft. But you should have a chance to explain your actions and a chance to learn what is actually so great about our country.
Mr. SleepyGuyYawn (SGY),
In the past I've generally enjoyed your posts. But to be perfectly honest with you, I find your comments rather disturbing.
If you're fighting on the side of terrorists, by definition you are a monster. Period. It is, frankly, irrelevant WHY you would decide to strap ammunitions to your person and detonate oneself knowing innocents WILL die, or fly a plane into a building knowing innocents WILL die, take a civilian prisoner and BEHEAD them.
HOW you reached that point is inconsequential. It doesn't matter if you came to the conclusion on your own powers of deduction after studying a Koran or if the Taliban brainwashed your from birth. You know, or at least innately (ie conscience) should know, that killing non-military personnel is wrong.
Using your logic, would it be OK if I stole or harmed you if my upbringing justified it (ie I grew up in an abusive household, etc). After all, if my situation is intolerable, it's gotta be your fault, or at least it's justifiable for me to exact my outrage on your person. Right?
And I have to follow up on the portion of your quote I indicated above. I'll break it up into two parts:"a chance to explain your actions"
You're not really being serious here, are you? Can you please come up with, say, three plausible, rational explanations for this sentence: "I want to slit the throats of (or blow myself up near) Americans and/or Jews because....."
And keep in mind they must be rational
explanations. Otherwise, perhaps someone who shoots a doctor who performs abortions or the drug dealer who shoots a kid in a drive by shooting can use similar justifications for their actions. a chance to learn what is actually so great about our country.
The fact that you even write this is frightening. I'm assuming you have a background in mental health by even suggesting this. A chance to learn what is so great about our country?!? How would you suggest we do this?
Say these people were brainwashed, do you have any idea how they could be 'de-programmed'? What criteria could even be used to determine if they were 'de-programmed? What would happen afterwards? They certainly couldn't be sent back to their original countries, b/c after all, they could be brainwashed all over again.
Worse, if they came to there irrational hatred of our country threw their own deductions, how could we persuade them that their conclusions were wrong? What if they initially see the errors of there ways, but after being immersed in parts of our culture re-conclude that, no, we are immoral infidels and take up their murderous ways again.
Also, it's pretty clear that the reason why these people hate us so much is BECAUSE of what they know about us. They hate the fact that we have religious freedom, that we have freedom of expression, that we have so many 'immoral' images available to us on TV, etc. The 9/11 hijackers knew a heck of a lot about us before they commandered those planes. You're talking fundamental cultural differences here. Put the shoe on the other foot. Could you be truly convinced that women shouldn't be able to vote, that it should be illegal to possess a Bible, especially when the persuasion would be coming from the rather mundane practices of the US, not the brutal, torturing techniques of the Middle East.
As I mentioned earlier SGY, I've generally enjoyed your posts on other matters, but on this issue you're simply wrong. For some reason you're morally equating, with disturbing eagerness, treatment of terrorists with treatments of your typical American criminal, and you just can't do that.
Please SGY, we've got North Korea, Iran, China on the front burners, and Russia, Venezuala, and a host of others on the back burners. We need people like you supporting the USA at this critical time in our country's history. Having compassion for those that will kill is misguided at best, and destructive at worst.