Judge Dredd as president?

Matthew Rothchild, Robbinsdale, Minn.

Recent current events have revealed some troubling trends with injurious implications for the future of our society.

1) Many demands have been made for extensive regulation of those citizens who wish to exercise certain of their rights. These demands are driven by fear that one of those citizens might be-or become-mentally unhinged and misuse said rights in a manner detrimental to others.

2) The president now openly claims the legal authority to summarily execute American citizens accused of certain crimes without the benefit of due process, even when away from the heat of combat and the chaos of the battlefield. This Judge Dredd style presidency is driven by fear that said citizens might someday misuse their freedom to the detriment of others.

When did we become a society so fearful of what someone might do that we became willing to sacrifice our rights (or more accurately, the rights of those we dislike) because it will supposedly cure the things of which we fear? What happened to having to commit an act that actually violates the rights of others in order to be subject to punishment? What happened to the presumption of innocence, the idea that the state must first prove you’re guilty of a crime before punishment can be heaped on you? What about due process? Trial by jury?

Is this really the conduct of a people deserving to be called “the land of the free”?

Such grave injustices will not exist without destroying also those who vigorously defend it and give its perpetrators a free pass. Yet, such people will not take the right course of action.

Make a conscious decision not to be afraid and remember that “injustice anywhere is a threat to justice everywhere.”