Wednesday, March 10, 2010

Exhuming McCarthy

"Have you no sense of decency, sir? At long last, have you left no sense of decency?" Those are the famous words of Joseph N. Welch in response to Joseph McCarthy at the infamous Army-McCarthy Hearings of 1954.

I'd like to repeat those questions to Liz Cheney and William Kristol. Apparently they think it's good politics to vilify Department of Justice lawyers who have defended alleged terrorists. But it's not good politics. Cheney and Kristol look like a pair of McCarthy-era commie-hunting idiots.

Our entire system of justice is based on both sides having good, strong legal representation. Sen. Lindsey Graham (R-S.C) has joined a list of distinguished lawyers and policy experts denouncing the recent attack ads:
"I've been a military lawyer for almost 30 years, I represented people as a defense attorney in the military that were charged with some pretty horrific acts, and I gave them my all," said Graham. "This system of justice that we're so proud of in America requires the unpopular to have an advocate and every time a defense lawyer fights to make the government do their job, that defense lawyer has made us all safer."
Ken Starr has also loudly rebuked Cheney and Kristol on this important issue. But the "department of Jihad" slur will still catch on with some people. Those people don't understand justice, but they also lack a conscious, empathy, and imagination. Do you ever imagine yourself on the unpopular side of a court case?

Hey Liz, let me help you picture what could happen in your fantasy world where no lawyer will defend a man who everybody assumes is guilty:

(Image via Crooks and Liars)

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