let's see if i can make this comparison without getting too far afield, shall we? so, the reason we went to war with/in iraq was because supposedly saddam had weapons of mass destruction. those were described to be chemical, biological, and perhaps nuclear weapons.
apparently, the remaining suspect in the recent bombing in boston is being charged with use of and conspiracy to use a weapon of mass destruction. i get that if you want to make a case on a technicality, sure, many people (or a mass) were severely injured, maimed, and some killed. i don't want to belittle what the victims are going through. but it's not a fucking weapon of mass destruction. it was a bomb, and let's be honest, a rather small one at that. we remember oklahoma city, right?
and then, reportedly, they didn't read him his miranda rights and at least some (many?) want to charge him as an enemy combatant, that way he has no protections.
allow me to digress. where i work there are some people who have progressed through the ranks who are able to influence how others are rated and promoted. unfortunately they also keep some sort of mental list whereby if they dislike you, you get poor ratings and if they like you, you see where this is headed. as far as i know i've not been on these people's bad side and i even know that i've been on two such individuals' good list. but i don't care that i was on the good list, i hate the fact that, beneficial to me or not, these people have any say in the matter. my ratings should be based on merit, as pie in the sky as that may be.
my point is that he is here, and furthermore he is here legally. for all intents and purposes he is a citizen, but who cares if he is or not. the country was founded, in part, on the idea that we don't want rules arbitrarily applied to us because we happen to live far away from the seat of government. that we don't want to give up liberty for security. and yet that 's all we seem to do now.
he is being treated as a non-human just because he's not technically a citizen. he hasn't been given legal protections afforded everyone else here. and he's under threat of being excluded from the system just so we can torture and punish him without qualm. elected officals have even advocated torture. that should get you thrown out of office, but it will probably get them reelected. that's how far we've come. fuck morals and human decency, let's torture a clearly troubled 19-yr old. i'm sure that will support our image around the world.
here's an idea. treat him like any other criminal. allow him the rights he is due. charge him with detonating a bomb in a crowd, mayhem, murder, conspiracy to murder, dismemberment, and whatever crimes actually fit. then, actually fucking try him in a real court.
this is the problem. when violent acts, threats of violent acts, or made up threats by the fbi/dhs have happened/surfaced, we've changed the rules, skirted the law, and done everything we can to prove that we are arbitrary and disinterested in the freedoms that we tout as the reasons for "them" hating us. while i think this society needs to change in a lot of ways, giving up freedoms, locking everything down like a prison, and randomly changing the rules to suit the state are not those changes. if history books ever become accurate, this is going to be a dark decade upon reflection.