American Rhetoric: Surf’s Up, Let’s Go Waterboarding

Who stands where?

     As 2011 draws to a close and 2012 comes nearer, all political eyes are on the GOP race. The big question; who will run against the incumbent, president Barack Obama one year from now? It seems like there is a GOP debate happening somewhere, on some channel or another, almost every week. It’s no wonder, there being eight candidates in the running!

     On Saturday, yet another in a long list of televised debates took place, and the topic that kept coming up was our nation’s use of waterboarding as an “enhanced interrogation technique,” and where each of the eight candidates stood on the issue. (In not only my own opinion, but also in the opinions of the UK, the UN and several high-profile diplomats, dignitaries and former statesmen, waterboarding is indeed torture!) Here’s what we know:(1)

  •      GOP candidate and former corporate CEO Herman Cain stated, “I don’t see that as torture. I see it as an enhanced interrogation technique.” [FAIL]
  •      GOP frontrunner and Texas Governor Rick Perry stated, “This is war. That’s what happens in war,” while defending waterboarding’s use as an interrogation technique. [FAIL]
  •      Rep. Michele Bachmann referred to the practice as “…very effective.” [EPIC FAIL]
  •      Former Massachusetts Governor Mitt Romney declined to comment on the matter during the debate, but his aides to the Governor later stated that he (Romney) does not believe that waterboarding is torture. [FAIL]
  •      Both former Utah Governor Jon Huntsman and Texas Rep. Ron Paul decried the practice as torture. [HOPE?]

     Now, according to everything I have ever read on the subject, waterboarding is torture. Several people who have questioned the labeling of the practice as torture and voluntarily underwent waterboarding to make first-hand judgements on the matter have subsequently changed their minds, affirming its torturous nature. These include author Christopher Hitchens and radio personality Erich “Mancow” Muller. John McCain, 2008 presidential hopeful and Arizona Senator has stated on numerous occasions that he considers the practice to be torture. Political talk show host and commentator Sean Hannity has previously stated that he too, would undergo the practice to show that it is not torture, however he has not made good on this promise to date.

     If you ask me, I think that we should take everyone who thinks that waterboarding is not torture, and waterboard them. Give them a first-hand perception of what exactly waterboarding entails, what it does and how it feels. Then let them try to reach the same conclusion.

     BY THE WAY! Has anyone else noticed the resemblance between GOP candidate Jon Huntsman, and Shooter McGavin, from Happy Gilmore?

Identical twins, separated at birth?

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