this is going to get me on a few more lists, no doubt. luckily i never plan to be a politician, minister of religion, school principal, director of a major corporation or member of a royal family, otherwise there would certainly be dirt to dig and bring out later on.
on the subject of nadine's guilt-free three and fluffy's guilt-ridden three, i've had a lot of trouble working out what mine would be, and where the line is between the two categories.
but for today, waleed aly is my poster boy for justice. it was michelle g in canberra the other day; see how fickle i can be?
today in the age on page 21, waleed's article on hicks is headlined "rights reduced to rhetoric".
let me pull out two paragraphs:
when several UN special rapporteurs, on behalf of the UN commission on human rights, labelled the treatment of guantanamo detainees "torture", the howard government relied on the assurances of the white house, and spent more energy defending the regime than ensuring an australian citizen's human rights. we have left hicks there for 4 1/2 years. we left mamdouh habib there for three. then he was released without charge.
the right to a fair trial; freedom from torture and cruel, inhuman or degrading treatment - in the human rights landscape, these are colossal landmarks. without them, other human rights become mere rhetoric. immediately after world war II, anyone could have told you that.
we talk of human right being as important as security. but in truth, we subordinate them to political imperatives.
that should be unthinkable in a nation that pioneered human rights.
but then, perhaps, we are no longer that same nation.