6. Torturing Children: Bush’s Legacy and Democracy’s Failure: Salvos from the Culture of Cruelty
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Torturing Children: Bush’s Legacy and Democracy’s Failure
SALVOS FROM THE CULTURE OF CRUELTY
Nowhere is there a more disturbing, if not horrifying, example of the relationship between a culture of cruelty and the zombie politics of irresponsibility than in the resounding silence that surrounds the torture of children under the former presidency of George W. Bush—and the equal moral and political failure of the Obama administration to address and rectify the conditions that made it possible. But if we are to draw out the dark and hidden parameters of such crimes, they must be made visible so men and women can once again refuse to orphan the law, justice, and morality. How we deal with the issue of state terrorism and its complicity with the torture of children will determine not merely the conditions under which we are willing to live but whether we will live in a society in which moral responsibility disappears altogether and whether we will come to find ourselves living under either a democratic or authoritarian social order. This is not merely a political and ethical matter but also a matter of how we take seriously the task of educating ourselves more critically in the future.
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