Tuesday, January 16, 2007

Citizens Subject to the UCMJ?

Believe it or not, that may very well be the case. If rage doesn't well up in your stomach when you read that a new law allows citizens to be subject to military tribunals, then nothing else will, and we can all welcome our fascist overlords. The Uniform Code of Military Justice only applies to members of the military because they contract away their citizenship for their service. The Military is, effectively, a self-regulating entity, and the UCMJ is the code by which it's legally governed. American Citizens, though, entertain rights provided by the Constitution. They include things like right to counsel, right to appear and cross examine witnesses against you, the right against self-incrimination. This law strips those subject to its militaristic whims of these rights, eliminating the protections of citizenship. This is all before we get to the fact that this is a back-door to permitting censorship. Some of those subject to military prosecution are journalists. Criminal rights notwithstanding, now we are talking about tearing down the backbone of democracy, free speech.

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