Torture

Is torture morally and ethically acceptable in some incidents? I personally believe that it is. It is normally a by-product of war. In times of war I think morals and ethics tend to get pushed away. I am not saying that this is ok, but it is the reality of the situation. War is full of many extremes. Torture would fall into a category of one of these extremes. Now it would be smart to define what exactly torture totally encompasses. Google defines it as, “the action or practice of inflicting severe pain on someone as a punishment or to force them to do or say something, or for the pleasure of the person inflicting the pain.” Well this is a very broad spectrum, for one inflicting sever pain seems a bit unnecessary. Normal pain can’t do the trick? I would be more in favor of minimizing sever/scaring pain and focus more on continual discomfort and high intensity situations. Secondly, I do not believe that the act of torturing someone should ever be used as punishment or as a consequence. It should only be enforced to get information. Lastly, the definition ends with the phrase “for the pleasure of the person inflicting the pain,” this idea should be very far away from the idea of torment. Putting someone through torment singularly for your own pleasure, is pure evil. Oliver Queen once said, “When dealing with extremists, you need to be willing to take extreme measures.” I think this is a good way to look at torture. As long as it is done within reason.
The events that have taken place in “Gitmo” although they may be harsh its a necessary action. Now I do not think that all of their techniques are perfectly sound. I think when people are treated pass the line of humanity, we as a nation have failed. As the Bible says we should leave judgment up to God. We should never torture someone out of revenge. It is not our job to pay our wrong doers back. We need to trust that Christ will ultimately force justice on them. If torture is the route that needs to be taken, it must be done in a manner to strictly find out information and thats it.
On Dec. 14th Dick Cheney was interviewed on NBC’s Meet the Press. He was asked about his thoughts on the fresh release of the CIA’s torture program. He was very blunt and forthright in his opinion. “Waterboarding, the way we did it, was, in fact, not torture.” This is a direct quote from the interview. Now under the definition that google gave, it defiantly is a form of torture. Dick should have recognized that what they were doing in Gitmo was torture. It may have not been the most severe form, but it still is. Its always better to be honest about things instead of ignoring the fact that they are there. Cheney also said, “when you’re dealing with terrorists, the likes of al-Qaida or the ISIS, I haven’t seen them waterboard anybody. What they did is cut their heads off.” Now I would respond to that with a reference to the Bible, Romans 12:2. The verse refers to resisting from conforming to the patterns of this world. Just because our enemies treat people un a inhuman way does not mean that we should do. One more quote from Dick, “we got authorizing from the president and authorization from the Justice Department to go forward with the program.” The problem I have with this is he’s basically saying that our nation’s leader should just do what the president says and ignore the fact that what they are doing is wrong. Also, it kind of distills a little fear in me that the evil things that the CIA has released has been authorized by the president and the Justice Department. Titus 3:1, is one of multiple times the Bible makes it clear that we should obey those God has placed in authority over us. So what if you are just obeying orders. Maybe the CIA was obeying an order to find information at all costs.
The reason I referenced former Vice President Cheney’s interview is because I believe its how many react to torture. Its all about justification. People do things that they know full well they would feel very different about if the tables were turned. I think that we as christians need to stand out above the mainstream agendas. So with torture, the Bible clearly states that it is not our job to find justice. Also, I have recently learned that the Bible shows that its not always right to do things for the greater good. Where in Jesus’ teachings does he express that numbers are more important than the individual. I believe as a christian that tormenting people is not right, but when it comes to war I think that it may be ok to implement it in some human ways as mentioned before to get information.

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