Thursday, October 18, 2012

In The Aftermath Of 911 thoughts and prayers immediately connected with the 779 detainees whose landing on the Naval Base was not nearly as beautiful or fortunate. 
They weren’t able to enjoy the beauty of the land and sea because, in transfer, they were subjected to sensory deprivation, a form of torture. The detainees arrived in Guantánamo wearing orange jumpsuits, black hoods, and goggles, leaving them dazed and confused as to their whereabouts. 
 On this trip, once the first-time visitors received our badges, we boarded a ferry and crossed Guantánamo Bay to the east side of the Naval Base. There we moved into the Media Operations Center, “the Moc,” and then into our residential tents in an area of the base known as Camp Justice. Bright orange barriers and chain-link, razor-wire fences fill the grounds. A variety of military personnel – I recall seeing Navy, Army and Marines – walk the grounds. The public affairs staff who welcomed us was exceptionally kind and helpful in assisting with the logistics and answering our questions. After a brief visit to the local grocery store (I needed sunblock!)
Link (here) to read the full post at America Magazine by Luke Hansen, S.J.
More on the 911 attack (here)
More on terrorism (here)
More on the victims of 911 (here)


TonyD said...

As a community, we may decide that torture is appropriate and acceptable and even "good".

Depending on the situation, "good judgment" may require the use of torture. Similarly, "good judgment" may preclude the use of torture.

The lessons that we have to learn here are not easy. And the penalty for poor judgment extends outside of this construct.

I can imagine that some are reading this and saying to themselves "but God loves me" and "I will spurn evil". Perhaps they are saying to themselves that they are good Church members who pray and practice faithfulness -- so torture is for others who are "evil". But, remember, good judgment and love don't preclude the use of torture. In fact, they require it.

We have hard lessons to learn.

I realize that few will understand this. So many will continue to wonder where God is and wonder why so much evil is allowed to exist. I share their disappointment.

Cubano said...

Poor Luke feed all that left wing drivel. Prison is supposed to be punishment, not a birthday party or day at the beach! I am glad Luke found his sunblock. That Cuban sunshine can really burn.

TonyD said...

About forgiveness -- the important quote of "mercy before sacrifice" is probably better understood as "friendship before sacrifice". And friendship can be understood as strongly preferring to acknowledge people's values rather than applying some other rules or values to their situation.

So "mercy before sacrifice" is really just another way of expressing "love your neighbor".

It is also possible to see this in our relationship with God. He has values that are very different from ours. (You should trust me when I say that they are very different from ours.) So allowing God to be God is not so easy as we may think. We have to prove our ability to forgive.

God is willing to recognize community values that may be very different from His own. Those values may involve things that He finds hateful. He will forgive, but only up to the point where we hold values that might destroy His community.