— Andrew Sullivan Journalist, writer, blogger 1963
"The Abolition of Torture" http://www.tnr.com/doc.mhtml?pt=dcGGvZpeEnhgPCp2PwTGAy%3D%3D, The New Republic (19 December 2005)
Kontext: Monsters remain human beings. In fact, to reduce them to a subhuman level is to exonerate them of their acts of terrorism and mass murder — just as animals are not deemed morally responsible for killing. Insisting on the humanity of terrorists is, in fact, critical to maintaining their profound responsibility for the evil they commit.
And, if they are human, then they must necessarily not be treated in an inhuman fashion. You cannot lower the moral baseline of a terrorist to the subhuman without betraying a fundamental value. That is why the Geneva Conventions have a very basic ban on "cruel treatment and torture," and "outrages upon personal dignity, in particular humiliating and degrading treatment" — even when dealing with illegal combatants like terrorists. That is why the Declaration of Independence did not restrict its endorsement of freedom merely to those lucky enough to find themselves on U. S. soil — but extended it to all human beings, wherever they are in the world, simply because they are human.