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Posts Tagged ‘legal rights’

        Guantanamo Bay or Gitmo, as it is often referred to, has been infamous since it was turned into a detention center for suspected terrorists.   Those who have been detained there have been allegedly branded as enemy combatants to the United States.   Now there are questions regarding the standard operating procedures; have they been trashed to get confessions?

           Some people feel that the rights of the detainees have been violated since the Bush administration stated that the Geneva Conventions protection did not have to be provided to the prisoners.  The US Supreme court disagreed with the Bush administration and future prisoners will NOW be afforded those protections.  The question is, what happens to those already in custody?  Those in custody have to prepare some kind of defense if they hope to get released. 

         In the meantime, much concern has been raised about those in legal limbo in the detention center. There are some detainees who could be released if the US could find countries willing to take them.   After all, what country is going to want to take in someone who has been accused of terrorism, whether it was proven or not?   Some detainees have already been released; but, many are still awaiting trial. 

            Questions have been raised about some of the interrogation techniques used to get confessions.  Were the confessions legitimate; or, were they obtained because of abusive or harsh treatment during questioning?  What if a person truly was guilty of the charges…but, the evidence was gotten because of hard interrogation techniques…is that acceptable; after all, some of the crimes alleged are pretty horrific?  Or, as a “civilized nation” are we bound to provide “humane” conditions; do the ends justify the means?

        Lawyers charged with providing legal representation for their clients are alledging that a standard operating procedures manual from the Pentagon had instructions to “destroy or trash” hand written notes or documents from the interrogations; in case the interrogators were called to testify, regarding harsh treatment of those kept in the detention center.  The lawyers claim that not having those handwritten notes makes representing their clients difficult because it is hard to prove that their “client’s confessions” were gotten in an intimidating way or through an abuse of power.

       If evidence has been suppressed by the government…that carries serious legal consequences for anyone in this situation.  While terrorism is a huge concern and we all want those involved in it to be apprehended…we have to examine the limits to the methods that we allow interrogators to use to get that information. 

          Detainees proven to be guilty, without a shadow of doubt, of alleged terrorist activities should be prosecuted to the fullest extent of the law.  That is why it is so very important about the way the information is gathered….we wouldn’t want a true terrorist to get away with it legally, because of an illegal method of gathering that evidence.

           Where should the line be drawn between the war on terrorism and humane treatment of suspected criminals?  Or should we have limits at all?  If we don’t have limits…how do we discern the difference between ourselves and those considered to be terrorists?   What about national security; what if releasing some of that information jeparodizes the safety of American citizens?  These are not simple questions, nor are the answers easy to come up with.  What do you think?

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      Actor Wesley Snipes was acquitted of federal tax fraud and conspiracy but he was convicted for 3 counts of not filing tax returns.  Wow, can you imagine how much money he owes?  His lawyer says that he plans to make financial amends.

      You hear horror stories of how much trouble people get into when they dont pay their taxes or if they are late.  There are horrible fees and penalties added to what they originally owe.

       When a multi-millionaire gets paid as much as they do in the entertainment industry you would think that they would have multiple tax advisors.  From what was reported in the news lately, Wesley paid taxes up until 1999, when he was ill advised that he did not have to pay them.

       Years ago…i remember hearing from a loved one that the IRS didnt have a legal right to demand that a person pay taxes, because they were not a proper legal entity.  I told this person, that i loved, to not believe such garbage.  I argued at the time, that if that were true, no one would pay taxes.

        Thank God, the person that i care about didn’t listen to such crazy talk.   I would not want anyone, that i cared about, to make such a deliberate mistake, to listen to something, that goes against common sense.

        I don’t see how any sane person could make the kind of money that Mr. Snipes made; and truly and honestly, believe that they would not have to pay taxes on it and not understand that they were required to file a tax return.

        When you stop to think about how much good a person could do with the kind of money that was owed; it could make a person sick.  It is true, i think what the Bible says, the love of money can corrupt.

         If the everyday “little people” who scrape every dime and nickle they own just to pay their bills and do right with their tax returns, year after year….you would think that those who are so financially blessed could do the same. 

          Regardless, it is sad to think that someone could have to leave their family; and go to prison, just over something so crazy as to be influenced by a group, person or organization that had a gripe with the government.  It has been previously, reported that Mr. Snipes may have to serve up to 3 years in prison because of his convictions.  Pay what is honestly owed…don’t try to be creative in this area of life.

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