Why are we having a torturous debate on torture?

Does it really matter what Speaker Pelosi knew and when she knew what she knew on torture?

I would be surprised if the CIA told Pelosi the absolute truth on waterboarding back in 2002.  And even if it did reveal everything to Pelosi back then, it seems absurd to equate whatever that would be (hypocrisy? Imagine that?) with the true moral crime of the U.S. employing torture as standard operating procedure.

Bush and the Republicans were in control. They were the ones  in charge of Waterboard Central. They can pull in the Dems somewhat into the current blame game, but only as fringe players.  It’s true the Democrats in general didn’t speak up as loudly and clearly as they could have. But that’s politics.  As is all the finger pointing now.

The problem is the U.S. has never spoken out as forcefully as it should have against torture. Tough to do when the country is the perpetrator on two major war fronts. Hard to really say no on torture without looking  soft on terrorism. It explains all the pussy-footing around the ethics of torture.

As a Bay Area guy, I’m apt to believe Pelosi. But all her claims about CIA lying only show how mealy mouth everyone in America , from politicians to the general  public,have been.

While  suspects were tortured for real, prime-time TV shows like “24” glorified  torture as entertainment.  If you cheered Jack Bauer, did you cheer George Bush?

Or did you change the channel?

Im afraid the voices of outrage from on  high and low, were all  for the most part, shamefully muted.

The country was whipped into a xenophobic mindset where giving the bad guys an extra dose of torture– for good measure—may have at the time  seemed reasonable.

In retrospect, what were our leaders thinking?