Reform vs. Awakening (revisited)

ERIC SCHECHTER—As I’ve already mentioned, people aren’t basically greedy and selfish. But our current culture certainly trains those traits into us. They’re built into the so-called “American dream”: You keep your stuff in your house, I keep my stuff in my house, and we’re taught that we don’t need to care about each other. Shootings in schools and shopping malls have become commonplace.


Why “Torture Doesn’t Work”

STEVEN JONAS—The authors of the Geneva Conventions just assumed that everyone “knows” what torture is; they didn’t bother to define it any detail.  The UN Convention defines it in general terms as “Any act by which severe pain or suffering, whether physical or mental, is intentionally inflicted on a person for such purposes as obtaining from him or a third person information or a confession . . .”  


Torture, the Republican Party and the Constitution

STEVEN JONAS—”…at the base here is the truly inconvenient truth that the use of torture by US authorities is simply unconstitutional.  Under article VI of the U.S. Constitution, as treaties signed and ratified by the U.S. government, both Conventions are part of ‘the supreme law of the land and [further] the judges of every state shall be bound by them.’  This, not arguments over whether it ”works” or doesn’t, is the central one for this country and its political leadership.”