Sunday, May 24, 2009

Conservative Mancow Muller says Waterboarding Torture

On May 22, 2009 Erich "Mancow" Muller, a conservative radio talk show host submitted himself for waterboarding. "I want to find out if it's torture," Mancow told his listeners Friday morning, adding that he hoped his on-air test would help prove that waterboarding did not, in fact, constitute torture."

I watched a video of his waterboarding, which was administered by Marine Sergeant Clay South. Muller stopped the waterboarding after 6 to 7 seconds and was visably shaken by the experience. Muller stated, "It is such an odd feeling to have water poured down your nose with your head back...It was instantaneous...and I don't want to say this: absolutely torture."

Vanity Fair writer Christopher Hitchens submitted himself to the same thing last year and came to the same conclusion. In fact, Hitchens said that the experience "haunted" him for months.

Sean Hannity, Fox, offered to submit to waterboarding to prove that it is not torture. Hannity has not followed through although given the chance to do so. I'm not going to suggest that Hannity is a coward because he changed his mind. I wouldn't submit myself to waterboarding, but then I already believe that it is torture. Hannity had enough sense to stop short of "torturing" himself and proving to his audience that his mouth is bigger than his lungs are.

Too bad that Muller's experience won't be enough to convince everybody that waterboarding is torture. Many of them will find some way to excuse Muller's inability to endure waterboarding. They will continue to support the use of waterboarding. There are many other supporters of waterboarding who didn't need Muller to demonstrate whether it was torture. These people already believe that waterboarding is torture. They believe that the US had the right to torture the detainees and would approve of the US using torture in the future.

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