Letter to Barack Obama re: NDAA

Dear Mr. President,

I urge you to veto the National Defense Authorization Act. A veto is the only way to prevent this dangerous and unlawful bill from destroying the personal liberties we hold dear and have fought so hard to maintain.

This bill is a direct contradiction of the 5th (“no person shall…be deprived of life, liberty, or property, without due process of law”) and 6th (“the accused shall enjoy the right to…be informed of the nature and cause of the accusation; to be confronted with the witnesses against him; to… [obtain] witnesses in his favor”) Amendments of the U.S. Constitution, and allows for the possibility of violating the 8th (“cruel and unusual punishment”) as well. As is evident by the language of the bill, this law allows for the indefinite detention, deprivation of personal liberties, and negation of due process of law against the accused in cases of terrorism. In a year where we have successfully killed the most powerful enemy of the state (Osama bin Laden) and declared an end to the War in Iraq, the language of this bill is not only excessively unconstitutional but also incredibly unnecessary. Such measures (though I believe could never be justified, no matter how dire the circumstances) are certainly no longer justifiable given the relative victories we have achieved under your administration.

The language of the NDAA is an appalling violation of our personal rights as citizens, and a slap in the face to the men who have fought and defended our country for hundreds of years because they believed in the liberties our Bill of Rights and our Constitution afforded us. I say “afforded”, in the past tense, because if you sign this bill into law, you will have effectively declared the Bill of Rights null and void.

Finally, I urge you to consider this last point: the next man in the office you currently hold (and the one who would hold the powers currently in question) could be Newt Gingrich, Rick Perry, or any of the other actors in the comedy of errors that is better known as the Republican Primary Election. Would you trust any of those men (or women) with the power to indefinitely detain, sentence without evidence, or even execute U.S. citizens?

With these points in mind, I urge you to strongly reconsider signing the NDAA into law.