Friday, June 11, 2010

Torture: Are You Convinced?

THE CALL FOR A COMMISSION OF INQUIRY by the National Religious Campaign Against Torture

The United States must never again engage in torture. Torture is immoral, illegal and counterproductive. It causes profound and lasting harm, especially to its victims but also to its perpetrators. It contradicts our nation’s deepest values and corrupts the moral fabric of our society.

We call for an impartial, nonpartisan, and independent Commission of Inquiry. Its purpose should be to gather all the facts and make recommendations. It should ascertain the extent to which our interrogation practices have constituted torture and "cruel, inhuman or degrading treatment". Understanding the causes, nature and scope of U.S.-sponsored torture is essential for preventing it in the future and eliminating it from our system without loopholes. U.S. law will determine the extent of any criminal culpability.

As people of faith, we know that brokenness can be healed – both in individual lives and in the life of the nation. All religions believe that redemption is possible. Learning the truth can set us on a path toward national healing and renewal.

The United States must never again allow itself to be driven by blinding fears and bitter resentments in responding to national tragedy. The use of torture only serves to undermine our security in a dangerous world.

Nothing less than the soul of our nation is at stake in confronting U.S.-sponsored torture and completely renouncing its use. Let the U.S. reaffirm its values by establishing a Commission of Inquiry.

H.R. 104 establishes a commission of inquiry with one member to be appointed by the President of the United States and two members each by the majority leader of the Senate, the minority leader of the Senate, the majority leader of the House of Representatives and the minority leader of the House of Representatives.

Will you add your voice to the call for a high standard of practice and accountability in the treatment and interrogation of prisoners in U.S. custody? Why?

No comments: