The detention and brutal treatment (dare we say "torture"?) of Muntada al-Zaidi, the shoe-throwing journalist in Iraq, just shows that the Bush administration is not exporting to Iraq anything like the kind of democracy we cherish at home.
If our Constitutionally protected freedom to dissent and freedom of expression are not permitted in our new colony, Iraq, then this just shows, yet again, how far America has strayed from our founding values. Of course, some will argue that throwing a shoe constitutes an act of "terrorism." But this is to stretch and distort the concept of "terror" to fit all sizes, so to speak. We have already gone a long way towards expanding the word so that it can be used to describe just about any form of political dissent. In effect we have given the current administration carte blanche to censor and intimidate anyone who disagrees with their tactics and policies. It is an embarrassment to Americans everywhere that Muntada al-Zaidi has been detained in custody and abused, for having the courage to harmlessly express his outrage, which is shared by many all over the globe. I have written to my member of Congress and I urge my fellow American citizens to do the same.