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Letter: The Value of McCoy Cartoons

To the Editor:

Contrary to requests from readers, please continue publishing Glenn McCoy’s mean-spirited and often scurrilous right-wing political cartoons among the predominately liberal others. How else can readers understand the vindictive nastiness exercised by many of today’s so-called conservatives?

That said, I agree with a recent McCoy cartoon depicting the Bible bursting into flames as President Obama swears to “preserve, protect and defend the Constitution of the United States” during his second inauguration. How better to represent the Obama administration’s violation of rights and procedures guaranteed by our Constitution? Consider, for example:

∎ ∎ Obama’s executive branch assuming the role of prosecutor, judge, jury and executioner for extra-judicial assassination of suspected terrorists, including U.S. citizens, anywhere in the world.

∎  Obama’s signing the 2012 National Defense Authorization Act empowering our military summarily to arrest and indefinitely detain without charge or trial anyone, including U.S. citizens, merely suspected of supporting al-Qaida, the Taliban or an undefined “associated force.” Detainees can be transferred to any foreign country or entity.

∎  Obama’s unwillingness to repudiate “extraordinary rendition,” to announce the closing of CIA “black site” prisons and to order the release of suspects so abducted and detained overseas.

∎  The Obama Justice Department’s denial of remedy or relief to individuals who suffered “extraordinary rendition” and torture by successfully claiming in federal district court that “state secrets” would be revealed if they were allowed to testify about their treatment.

∎ ∎ Obama authorizing our government, under the 2013 National Defense Authorization Act, to disseminate “public diplomacy” (aka propaganda) not only abroad but now within the United States.

∎  The Obama administration’s continuing authorization, without judicial warrant, of wiretapping and surveillance of American citizens and the infiltration of civilian groups.

∎ ∎ Obama’s refusal to investigate and, where appropriate, prosecute officials of the George W. Bush administration who designed, authorized, facilitated or carried out human rights abuses in violation of our Constitution, laws and treaties.

This and more justifies any cartoonist depicting the trashing of our constitutional heritage by Presidents Bush and Obama since 9/11.

John Karol

Orford

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Letter: A Different Kind of War

Thursday, March 14, 2013

To the Editor: There has been considerable discussion of the killing of Anwar al-Awlaki by an American drone. We have seen a typical objection to this “extralegal” killing in a letter by John Karol in the Feb. 28 Valley News (“The Value of McCoy Cartoons”). If an American had been driving a German tank in World War II, we would …