Sunday, January 21, 2007

Bush announces National Sanctity of Life and Hypocrites Day

As Governor of Texas:

In his five years as governor of Texas, the state has executed 131 prisoners -- far more than any other state.

Remember this?:
In the week before [Karla Faye Tucker's] execution, Bush says, Bianca Jagger and a number of other protesters came to Austin to demand clemency for Tucker. "Did you meet with any of them?" I ask.

Bush whips around and stares at me. "No, I didn't meet with any of them," he snaps, as though I've just asked the dumbest, most offensive question ever posed. "I didn't meet with Larry King either when he came down for it. I watched his interview with [Tucker], though. He asked her real difficult questions, like 'What would you say to Governor Bush?' "

"What was her answer?" I wonder.

"Please," Bush whimpers, his lips pursed in mock desperation, "don't kill me."

Jack Balkin at Balkinization:
Indeed, far from respecting the dignity of human life, the surge is a policy that will sacrifice some unspecified number of casualities so that George W. Bush can save face and pass the problem of Iraq to his successor.

Nor did President Bush announce that he had suddenly become a convert to the belief that the death penality violates both human dignity and the sanctity of life and seek its gradual abolition.

Nor did he apologize for the forms of torture and prisoner abuse in secret CIA prisons and at Guantanamo Bay that violated human dignity.

Nor did he apologize for the Military Commissions Act's retroactive immunization of American officials who justified and carried out these outrages on human dignity.

Finally, and perhaps most importantly, the President did not use this opportunity to call directly for overturning Roe v. Wade. If he was really serious about protecting the sanctity of life as he sees it, he would do more than nibble about the edges with makeweights like the Born-Alive Infants Protection Act of 2002: he would state, clearly and forcefully, that Roe v. Wade is legalized murder and demand that it be overturned immediately. But he has not done so. Indeed, throughout his political career George W. Bush has always appealed to pro-life voters but has always stopped short of advocating the policy that they actually seek-- the overturning of Roe and the criminalization of abortion. The reason is that he knows the achievement of both of these would be a disaster for the electoral prospects of the Republican Party. Clearly some things are far more important than protecting the sanctity of human life. In fact, for this President, there appear to be a great many such things.
Meanwhile, over in Iraq, Bush's vanity war is doing poorly with 21 more US soldiers killed this weekend.

Update: make that 27.

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