Friday, December 08, 2006

Padilla Mistreated? Nah

Huffington Post
Lloyd Garver
Padilla Mistreated? Nah

Many people were shocked the other day when they saw photographs of long-time detainee, José Padilla who was shackled, blindfolded, and "ear muffed" in the pictures. The photos appeared in "The New York Times," and were taken as before Padilla was escorted to the dentist. His "escorts" wear riot gear, including plastic shields on their faces.

At first glance, it may look like paranoia and overkill. Why would they have to keep an inmate in shackles, and prevent him from seeing and hearing on his way to the dentist? And having done so, one would think that the prisoner would have been rendered fairly harmless. So, why do those accompanying him need riot gear?

But this is exactly why the Bush Administration is so fed up with the "liberal press." It's obvious why the prisoner is being treated this way: he has a morbid fear of the dentist. Temporarily depriving him of sight and sound is a humane way of not frightening him any more than necessary on his way to his D.D.S. And the shackles are there to keep him from running away which might only make his dental problems worse.

And as far as why the kindly Americans are wearing riot gear? We all know how irrational some people can get around dentists, and they need to be protected in case Padilla threw a "dentalphobic fit."

So, let's cut our "imprisonment without trial" system a break. It's not always what it looks like. And if any photos turn up of Padilla being subjected to the dreaded "water boarding," isn't it just possible that his friendly captors are trying to cure his fear of water?