I want to thank the Post-Gazette for its excellent May 23 editorial "Do Unto Others: What Would Jesus Say About Torturing Captives?" June is Torture Awareness Month, and our opportunity to declare torture as being morally wrong.
Torture is not only forbidden by international laws, to which the United States is a signatory, but also by our religious teachings. "Remember those in prison as though you yourself were in prison with them; those who are being tortured as though you yourselves were being tortured" (Hebrews 13:3).
When we use these harsh interrogation techniques that humiliate and cause bodily harm to another person, it diminishes us as a country. To ask our soldiers to use these techniques is to ask them to do something that will haunt them. We have all seen the photos from Abu Ghraib. Would we want our son or daughter to use torture on another person?
Now is the opportunity for all Pennsylvanians to remember our rich history of support for the human rights of all peoples, and in June join others around the country by calling on our president and congressional representatives to support a commission of inquiry that will provide an accounting of U.S.-sponsored torture policies and practices so that necessary safeguards can be put into place to assure that torture never happens again.
Pennsylvania Program Director, American Friends Service Committee
Roots of Promise, A Thomas Merton Center Project