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Right to be Tried by a Jury of Our Peers

American citizens Anwar al-Awlaki This nation seems to be in a state of flux. The old constitutional protections guaranteed by the Constitution under The Bill of Rights have been replaced by Executive Orders and various bills approved by the House and Senate and signed into law by various Presidents. It is not one political party, nor one President that is responsible for disposing with the troubling Bill of Rights that impedes the Federal and State governments handling of “dissidents”. It is an economic class, the richest people in the land.

The reason I maintain this is because either it is the wealthiest people that hold office, according to The Center for Responsive Politics Open Secrets’ website;

“About 47 percent of Congress or 249 current members are millionaires. … In 2010, the estimated median net worth of a current U.S. senator stood at an average of $2.56 million,” according to the Center’s research.

“Despite the global  economic meltdown  in 2008 and the sluggish recovery that followed, that’s up about 7.6 percent  from an estimated median net worth of $2.38 million  in 2009 … and up 13 percent from a median net worth of $2.27 million in 2008. … Fully 36 Senate Democrats and 30 Senate Republicans reported an average net worth in excess of $1 million in 2010.  The same was true for 110 House Republicans and 73 House Democrats.” (ABC News)

The reason for this is because our election process in this nation is fundamentally flawed. There has been no effective Campaign Finance Reform since 2002, and the Citizen’s United ruling from the Supreme Court has devastated the election process. Money controls our government, the people would be damned. When the only viable candidates are from the two parties that rule this nation, voting becomes little more than an afterthought.

Americans are now witnessing the aftershock from failing to address this situation. We as a people must ask this one overriding question that has plagued us since the beginning of time; Cui bono? (Who benefits?). Let me answer that question, it sure isn’t us.

Witness the passage of the NDAA and the subsequent court battles of those principled individuals that are trying to stop it. The NDAA is an infringement on our liberties yet only a handful of Americans realize how important it is to overturn this terribly offensive and liberty-robbing provision. We hear of no challengers to this provision in the U.S. House of Representatives or in the U.S. Senate. While the vote in the Senate was 67 for and 29 against, and the vote in the House was 283 to 136, only Rand Paul stood up against the Act and tried to put in a provision excluding US citizens. He said this about the provision;

"When you're accused of a crime in our country you get a trial, you get a trial by a jury of your peers, no matter how heinous your crime is, and no matter how awful you are we give you a trial.”

Apparently, Congress doesn’t think so, as his amendment was ignored. We hear almost nothing from the Congressmen and Senators that voted against this provision slipped into the National Defense Authorization Act in 2012.

How does this affect ordinary Americans? Well, when the government grabs the authority to have the military pick you up and hold you without trial or legal representation if you support al Qaeda or (vaguely) “associated forces” until this charade called “The War on Terror” is over, it can cause one to take pause. I for one, curtailed most of what I wanted to write until my wife and I got our passports. I imagine that many people in this nation also thought twice about the increase of governmental power.

At this time in our history we are witnessing another governmental creep toward total control. The use of drone strikes against American citizens without due process is being debated, not in Congress, but on the internet, on left wing and right wing sites alike. This situation, along with the President’s authority to blast anyone he deems to be an “enemy” to kingdom come, is against everything this nation has stood for it its history. The order to execute an American, without due process, is a travesty of justice. The sad fact is that this has already been done!  

The extra-judicial killing of On September 30, 2011 a drone strike in Yemen killed American citizens Anwar al-Awlaki and Samir Khan. Both individuals resided in Yemen at the time of their deaths. The executive order approving al-Awlaki's death was issued by the Obama administration in 2010 and challenged by the American Civil Liberties Union and the Center for Constitutional Rights in that year. The U.S. President issued an order, approved by the National Security Council that al-Awlaki's normal legal rights as a civilian should be suspended and his death should be imposed, as he was a threat to the United States. The reasons provided to the public for approval of the order was Al-Awlaki's links to the 2009 Fort Hood Massacre and the 2009 Christmas Day bomb plot, the attempted destruction of a Detroit-bound passenger-plane. Telegraph UK

While it can be argued that Anwar al-Awlaki was a “terrorist” and a traitor, his sixteen-year old son (Abdulrahman al-Awlaki), who was blown to pieces by an American drone a week later, could not be justified. In fact both killings (the father and the son) can’t be justified! Killing Americans (no matter what the government claims they have done) is not only against the Constitution, but against everything this nation was founded on!

Yes, Obama should be impeached, but he won’t be. Those individuals that make up our legislature have been bought and paid for by the special moneyed interests that also control the mainstream media. Most Americans, thanks to the media, are largely unaware of what really happens. This is Press Secretary Robert Gibbs talking about the American drone strike on 16 year –old American citizen Abdulrahman al-Awlaki:

"I would suggest that you should have a far more responsible father if they are truly concerned about the well-being of their children," Gibbs said, suggesting the son somehow deserved his death because of the sins of the father. "I don't think becoming an al Qaeda jihadist terrorist is the best way to go about doing your business."

Remember, al-Awlaki nor his son was on the government’s kill-list, nor were there any formal charges against them. If al-Awlaki was a terrorist, charges should have been brought before a court. The killing of his son however was wrong on every conceivable level.

Now the American people are engrossed in the capture of a “rogue” former LAPD policeman who was also a navy officer. A manifesto was released, ostensibly from him, about why he is murdering law enforcement officers. All of this is very strange. This “manifesto” is very coherent and makes some very damning charges against the LAPD. The mainstream media says little about these charges that Christopher Dorner has leveled against the LAPD. Some have claimed that this manifesto wasn’t written by the same person throughout. Regardless, the man-hunt has brought sensationalism to this drama. Now that drones are being used domestically, will Dorner, hyped by the press as an armed killer, be brought down by an armed drone?

Surveillance drones are already being used in this man-hunt. The question that I would like to pose here is that if they have a shot, will an armed drone be used to take this individual down? If this happens, will they give him a chance to give himself up, or will this just be another indiscriminate murder by another governmental agency seeking to destroy its enemies without judicial process? How will the American people react to something like this?

Unless people in the entertainment industry speak out against lethal drone strikes in the United States without proper judicial process, don’t expect many in the United States to even be aware that an historic precedent has even happened. Once it is ruled that the drone killing of this man was “legal”, expect drone strikes against perceived “criminals” to become commonplace across the country.

The media will not speak out against it if it should happen. They will blindly go along with whatever policies were put in place. They will not only go along with executing someone by remote control, they will even champion it! Whatever happens in this case, the media as it exists in this nation will not argue the questions that a scenario like this will bring.

Between the Federal Government being controlled by millionaires and those that are supported by corporate funding and special interests, expect nothing from the Federal Government. They are not there to support the working people that live here, they support the status quo. If they are told that a Federal, State or Local government can kill suspects with impunity, they will blindly obey. Expect nothing from the mainstream media, as they are in the same hands as the government.

In short, we are witnessing the destruction of due judicial process in the United States. As some have suggested, we are entering into a Federal dictatorship that is being supported by the States and the media. The right to kill without a trial is being debated and without the people’s voice in the debate, many people will be subject to execution without a trial right here in the United States. The federal Government has never had a power that it hasn’t used. I just hope it won’t be used on you or me.

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