JEFFERSON ON DETAINEES

A reader notices something:

I’m currently reading Willard Sterne Randall’s biography of Thomas Jefferson. In it, he quotes a letter to Patrick Henry from Jefferson in early 1779 regarding the treatment of English prisoners during the Revolution:

“I would not endeavor to show that their lives are valuable to us, because it would suppose a possibility that humanity was kicked out of doors in America and interest only attended to … But is an enemy so execrable that, though in captivity, his wishes and comforts are to be disregarded and even crossed? I think not. It is for the benefit of mankind to mitigate the horrors of war as much as possible. The practice, therefore, of modern nations of treating captive enemies with politeness and generosity is not only delightful in contemplation but really interesting to all the world, friends, foes, and neutrals.”

Considering how much conservatives like to fawn over the States’ Rights supported by Jefferson, what do they do with this enlightened view? Or is it aiding the enemy to even ask?

It’s aiding the enemy. Our duty is to shut up. At least, that’s what the vice-president appears to believe.

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