Guilty Until Proven Innocent: The Role of Race and Religion

Greg - State College, Florida
Entered on November 17, 2008
Age Group: Under 18
Themes: equality

In the United States constitution it states that everyone is presumed to be innocent until they are proven guilty. Unfortunately, the US is ignoring the constitution and Habeas Corpus. It is morally wrong. I believe that everyone is innocent until proven guilty, no matter what or who they are.

As much as we don’t want to touch on it, racism and stereotypes play huge parts in this country. If you are on a jury, and a poor black man with multiple tattoos and bad grammar is on trial for a gang related incident, the automatic thought is that he is guilty. We are all guilty of having thoughts like that. But we need to move on. To take words from an old protest song, “We shall overcome.” A black man has a great chance at being president. This is a start. However, people will not vote for Barack Obama because he is black.

Two words: Guantanamo Bay. This is in complete violation of Habeas Corpus. Without any evidence, people are thrown into this “jail” and are subject to “experimental interrogation.” As much as people don’t want to here this, I will point out that almost all of the detainees are Muslim. Is this a coincidence? No.

If you walk around with a turban on your head, people immediately become uneasy. I’m not going to lie, when I was in an airport right after 9-11, I got a little nervous. But this is something that I overcame and that other people should to. There are 1.2 billion Muslims in the world, and a miniscule amount of them are part of Al Qaeda, or any terrorist group for that matter.

Getting back to the political issue of Guantanamo Bay. Everyday day, Muslims are thrown into this jail and are tortured. We have no evidence of them being terrorists, but the government considers that they are a threat because of their religion. We separated ourselves from England because we wanted to be free. We wanted liberty. Now we as a nation are going back on these ideas.

Sadly, I see a confederate flag everyday, whether it be on a bumper sticker, or on a shirt. I think to myself, “C’mon people, aren’t we past that?” The answer is no. Innocent black men will be sent to jail. Until someone comes up with the leadership and courage to make a stand against Guantanamo Bay, the US keeps a bad rep. Ignoring what our founding fathers penned some 240 years ago is a crime in itself. I don’t care if your black, white, green, yellow, red, Christian, Buddhist, Atheist, Muslim, or Jewish, I see you as an equal, and hopefully someday everyone will.