Super Lawyers
William C. Altreuter
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Wednesday, February 25, 2015

I am sickened-- but not surprised-- that the mayor of an American city which operates a secret detention center is unashamedly running for reelection. We've normalized torture, and now it is come home and become part of who we are. We reelected a President who was an avowed torturer-- why should a mayor balk at this fundamental violation of what the idea of America is supposed to stand for?

Rudy Guiliani-- a former mayor who, lest we forget, is likewise associated with torture-- has been seen saying aloud that the President is some sort of crypto-foreigner because he is insufficiently enamored of American exceptionalism. It shouldn't have to be said, but I'll say it: Patriotism is an empty value if it is not an emotion brought about by critical self-evaluation, and if that evaluation establishes that the nation under scrutiny is failing to exist pursuant to the values which purportedly distinguish it from others in the community of nations than it falls to us each to do something about it. President Obama is at least intellectually honest about this, I think. His long and continuing association with Rahm Emanuel gives me hesitation, but hesitation is as far as I will go until further information emerges.

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