Okay, so Joe Lieberman — like his friend John McCain — is apparently upset that Faisal Shahzad had to have his Miranda Rights read to him by the FBI. So, what's a hawkish Democratic senator to do? How about come up with a brilliant plan to strip terrorists of U.S. citizenship so that Miranda Rights would no longer be required.
Try as I might, I can't possibly think of any glaringly obvious problems with this plan…
Lieberman is planning to introduce a bill that would allow the government to revoke the citizenship of an American who joins a foreign terrorist organization, the Hill reports. The proposed legislation would amend current law that strips a person's citizenship if they fight with a foreign army.
"I think it's time for us to look at whether we want to amend that law to apply it to American citizens who choose to become affiliated with foreign terrorist organizations, whether they should not also be deprived automatically of their citizenship and therefore be deprived of rights that come with that citizenship when they are apprehended and charged with a terrorist act," Lieberman, head of the Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs Committee, said on Fox News.
"…said on Fox News." No surprises there. Where else would he say it? The bowels of Hell? They only tape on weekends.
Anyway, I suppose that, in theory, I'm not opposed to this plan. (I have this tendency to lose sympathy for people who try to kill hundreds of innocent civilians.) However, aren't Miranda Rights traditionally read to people suspected of a crime? I'm not a hundred percent sure, because I've only seen them read aloud in a million different movies and TV shows, but I don't think they're read to people who have already been convicted. (Those people, I'm pretty sure, just get butt-raped by neo-Nazis and that guy from Law & Order.)
So, if this law were to work the way that Lieberman seems to want it to work, you could effectively strip a U.S. citizen of his or her citizenship simply by accusing them of being a conspiring terrorist.
I don't know why the idea of this gives me pause. Situations like this generally tend to not ever, ever be abused.
Tags: Bill of Rights, Constitution, Faisal Shahzad, Joe Lieberman, Senate, Terrorism