Thursday, July 07, 2005

It's a pretty unpleasant sort of deja vu to get up once again and start the day with news of another major terrorist attack in another major western metropolis. We don't know who did it or why, though I'm sure everyone has made their assumptions. My first thought was the French Olympic committee, but I could be wrong.

I'm surprised at how low the fatality count is. Right now they're still saying around thirty in the underground, but it's not clear whether that counts the bus or not. Still, since it's clear whoever-it-was was trying to imitate the Madrid train bombings, we can be thankful that they weren't as competent as the terrorists in Spain.

Just for the record, I want the perpetrators of this outrage quickly tracked down and brought to justice. Even though I'm a liberal, when I say "brought to justice" I do not mean "given milk and cookies," I do not mean "hugged," and " I do not mean "put in therapy." However, because I'm a liberal, I also do not mean "let's bomb a country we don't like," "let's assassinate someone and declare victory," or "lets disappear some people into a shadowy system with no accountability." I want the people responsible captured and tried in full daylight for all the world to see.

Because I'm a liberal, I believe in rule of law. I believe in playing according to the rules and making them work. I believe in the value of the government doing things--especially law and justice--in public. I think there is great value in putting the guilty on public so everyone can see what contemptible little monsters they are. I think there is great value in making the workings of the system public so everyone can see that it is fair and honest. I think the rules should play out the same whether terrorists are Islamic fundamentalists, American anti-abortion crusaders, animal rights activists, or the French Olympic committee.

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