New Covenant graciously disagreed. You never know whether that is an invitation to discuss the matter or not, until you attempt it.
When someone roundly criticizes you ( and I am speaking now of the case of Sen. D.Durbin and the Left), there are two ways to go with it. One is to attribute it to the adversarial nature of the interaction and the other is to give some thought to whether you have a blindspot that you ought to consider. IOW, whether they have a valid point or not.
I think that Conservatives have a bit of the knee-jerk response. That is why I wrote the post in question on Durbin. Are we really teflon coated in our ethical treatment of the enemy? Or are we saying to ourselves that we simply aren’t as bad in comparison? Is this good enough for continued American support? Is there any place where we may have truce between the Blue and the Red in American politics- is there no area of measured discussion?
I believe we ought to be thinking about this. The Conservatives are right to be concerned, but are they helping their own purpose in refusing to discuss the points? Saying there is none.
Because one maxim that is getting lost here is the one that tells us a house divided cannot stand. This doesn’t have to be on the grand scale of the Union as we witnessed in the nineteenth century… it can be on the scale of having the heart to see through our policy.
You can’t just brush aside the voice of opposition as if they were annoying nuisances. Maybe it is time to exert some patient engagement of the issue of coming to consensus on what the moral stance of America is on such problems of as incarceration and intelligence procedure. A working consensus.
Jonah Goldberg wrote a sensible article called ‘Know Your Enemy: Closing Guantanamo is senseless’. He makes the case that we have to do something. We have to interrogate for information, and we have to have a place for incarceration for dangerous terrorists.
We talk of winning the hearts of people in places like Iraq, but where is the same intent in our own country? Isn’t it worth the patience to work with the growing attitudes of discomfort on the Left? If there is a lack of historical reality, go over the facts …again. What good is it in the long run to paint the opposition as the Great Satan of your universe, particularly if you are required to work with them in governing yourselves?
I see no asset in that. There are times and issues when you must flatten the argument of the oppsition. I don’t believe this sort of wartime is one of those. I think a consistant effort has to be made to make a case for general support of policy. We are in a war, but not one that is officially declared. It is generalized in aspect and in execution. It needs general support in our nation.
We seem to be seeing Iraq moving towards a democratic form. It makes no sense to lose ground on the homefront, for lack of patient engaging the issues.
There is more than one war being waged, on more than meets the eye.