During last night's campaign speech at the Ritz-Carlton in Los Angeles, President Obama said:
So on every issue domestically we've got differences, and I haven't even—we haven't talked about the fact that my opponent feels comfortable with Washington making decisions about women's health care that women, Michelle tells me, are perfectly capable of making themselves. (Laughter and applause.)
We haven't talked about what's at stake with respect to the Supreme Court. We haven't talked about what's at stake with respect to civil liberties. And obviously there's a lot at stake internationally. And an opponent who calls me ending the war in Iraq "tragic," or suggests that somehow we should stay longer in Afghanistan has a very different world view, different perspective.
Let's put aside for a minute that Obama rejected the FDA's science-based recommendation to allow girls under the age of 17 over-the-counter access to emergency contraception; that a Republican-appointed Supreme Court justice saved Obamacare; and that Obama's "different world view" manifests in funding (and directing) a Mexican drug war that's claimed 60,000 lives, bombing an incalculable number of Muslim civilians, and lying about a terrorist attack on U.S. soil.
Let's instead just focus on this: "We haven't talked about what's at stake with respect to civil liberties."
"If Obama wants to discuss civil liberties, he should be held accountable for the obliteration of the First, Fourth, and Fifth amendments occurring under his watch, if not under his direction," writes Jesselyn Radack, National Security & Human Rights Director for the Government Accountability Project. If Radack were moderating, Obama would have to answer for his secret kill list, expanded surveillance, his assassination of American citizens, secret laws created by the PATRIOT Act, and his war on both whistleblowers and journalists.
He should also be asked to answer for at least a few of the following:
- Why does Obama's Justice Department continue to raid medical marijuana dispensaries, and to ignore the will of voters in states where medical marijuana is legal?
- Why has he condemned police brutality during the Arab Spring and the Iranian uprising, but failed to condemn a single act of police brutatlity in the United States, particularly the murder of Kelly Thomas and the murder-by-torture of Nick Christie?
- Why does he allow the Department of Defense to distribute military grade weapons and equipment to local police departments?
- Why has he done nothing to reunite the roughly 5,100 children ripped from their deported parents and placed in American foster care?
- Why has he done nothing to curtail the frequent humiliations and abuses Americans are subjected to by the Transportation Security Administration?
- Why has he allowed his Justice Department to defend the right of DEA agents to shackle young children at gunpoint?
- Why did he give himself–and by extension, future presidents–the leeway necessary to indefinitely detain Americans?
- When he reduced the sentencing disparity between cocaine and crack, why did he reduce it from 100-to-1 to 18-to-1, and not just 1-to-1?
- Why has he commuted only one federal drug sentence in nearly four years?
- Why has he permitted his FDA to conduct armed raids on Amish farms that sell raw milk?
- Why did his party eliminate nearly all mentions of civil liberties from its 2012 platform, and in the process, soften the party's long-stated opposition to torture?
- Why has privileged the regulatory powers of the EPA over the due process rights of American citizens?
Readers: If you think of more questions, add them in the comments, and I'll add them (with credit) to this post.