Posted by Jay Livingston
In a 2008 post I wrote (here)
Sarah Palin was standing up for torture, and the Republicans cheered. It was then I finally realized: these people actually like torture.She’s back, and things haven’t changed in six years except that the wingnuts have become more explicit in their exaltation of torture. It’s now a sacrament. As Palin told the NRA
If I were in charge, they would know that waterboarding is how we baptize terrorists. [here at about the 7:20 mark]The gunslingers of course cheered on cue. So far, not many Christians have voiced objection or even wondered what Jesus would do or who He would torture.
The reaction marches side by side with the “righteous slaughter”* fantasy, most recently enacted by the people who brought out their guns in defense of Cliven Bundy’s “right” to free government handouts. (The part about using women as shields didn’t quite fit with the machismo, but hey, nobody’s perfect.) In the fantasy, it doesn’t matter whether you are the torturer or the torturee. The point is to test one’s manliness.
Those who have experience with torture – even conservative Republican’s like John McCain – rarely entertain these romantic and cavalier notions. I wonder how many of the “citizen soldiers” who rushed with their guns to defend Bundy** had been real soldiers who had been shot at and who had seen battlefield death.
* My post with that title (here) was about the attempts to view George Zimmerman as a hero for his having killed Trayvon Martin. Unfortunately, his virtuous deed does not seem to have had the ennobling effect on Zimmerman that some might have hoped for.
** Like Zimmerman, Bundy soon turned out not to be the hero that his champions (Sean Hannity, et al.) thought they had.