Quite a few years ago, there was an attempt by a prisoner in the United States to capitalize on the murders he had committed. David Berkowitz, the so-called Son of Sam, a serial killer who had been caught and arrested in New York in the 1970s after having killed six people and wounding several others, was offered large sums of money for his story by a multitude of movie studios and book publishers.
In order to ensure that this man who had caused so much misery to so many families was not benefiting financially from his crimes, New York legislators created the Son of Sam Law. Although it was initially seen by many as a First Amendment violation, the Supreme Court gave lawmakers an ability to rewrite the law to ensure it did not violate said rights AND satisfied the original intent of the law. Over the years, the Son of Sam Law has been invoked by prosecutors and victims rights advocate groups multiple times and remains unaltered.
But now a similar situation has arisen. Recently, Secretary of Defense James “Mad Dog” Mattis was notified of a tremendous cache of “artwork” that had been created by the Guantanamo Bay detainees over many years. Former President Barack Hussein Obama had released many of those at the Cuba detainment center that he deemed not dangerous. In an effort to ensure that this so-called “art of murderers” did not surface later and possibly allow one of these detainees to financially gain through this “artwork,” he ordered the confiscation and destruction of all creations. Now, the New York Times is melting down!
The Daily Caller:
Professor Erin Thompson argues the U.S. military’s decision to begin confiscating and possibly destroying the artwork created by prisoners at the Guantánamo Bay detention camp mirror the “tactics fit for terrorist regimes,” in a New York Times op-ed on Monday.
“Taking away ownership of their art is both incredibly petty and utterly cruel,” Thompson, an assistant professor at John Jay College of Criminal Justice, wrote in the op-ed. Thompson also is a co-curator of the exhibit “Ode to the Sea: Art from Guantanamo,” which is a compilation of some of the art done by prisoners and currently includes work from suspected al-Qaeda combatant Moath al-Alwi.
The military will now treat artwork by Guantánamo prisoners as property of the US government, rather than that of Cuba’s incarcerated Picassos, according to a report from the Miami Herald. According to lawyers for the suspected terrorists, the military plans to burn their work.
“Making art is a profoundly human urge,” Thompson writes. “Viewing this art has allowed thousands of visitors at John Jay College and elsewhere a chance to see that its makers are human beings. These detainees have been treated in fundamentally dehumanizing ways, from torture to denial of fair trials, and their art reminds us that we cannot ignore their condition.”
The new policy means the artwork can no longer leave the confines of the military base, apparently leaving a dramatic hole in the cultural fabric of Manhattan. And destroying the cardboard-based artwork of Alwi, Thompson surmises, could “encourage” the followers of terrorist groups to attack the West.
“Unless the military reverses its cruel new policy, he can no longer even launch his fragile creations into the world, to be free in his place,” he writes.
So by not allowing leftist professors to parade the work by suspected enemies of the United States around taxpayer-funded universities, the United States is apparently no better than the Islamic State, according to Thompson.
There was a very interesting scene in the movie “Escape From Alcatraz” where the warden, brilliantly played by actor Patrick McGoohan, sees a portrait of himself that was painted by elderly inmate Chester “Doc” Dalton. A scene then plays where a prison guard enters Doc’s cell and begins confiscating all of his painting supplies. When Doc asks why, the guard simply replies, “I don’t know.”
Later, Doc ends up chopping off three fingers with a hatchet after calling a guard over to watch! The scene is classic Hollywood and you kind of feel sorry for the old guy. However, I don’t foresee anyone getting teary-eyed if a bunch of detainees at Guantanamo end up chopping off extremities in protest to Mattis’ command. Except, perhaps, the Libs in New York and California.
Source: The Daily Caller