Americans And Torture

    According to this Pew poll, Americans favor torturing detainees in some circumstances by a wide margin. There's a reason John Kerry didn't bring it up in the debates. And there's a reason Cheney and Rumsfeld know they can continue the practice: they have widespread public support. Most disturbing to me are the high numbers of self-decribed Christians favoring torture: only 26 percent of Catholics oppose it in all circumstances, while only 31 percent of white Protestants rule it out entirely. If you combine those Christians who think torture is either never or only rarely acceptable, you have 42 percent of Catholics and 49 percent of white Protestants. The comparable statistic of those who are decribed as "secular," which I presume means agnostic or atheist, is 57 percent opposition. In other words, if you are an American Christian, you are more likely to support torture than if you are an atheist or agnostic. Christians for torture: it's a new constituency. Another part of the Bush legacy.