There is an ongoing debate on whether torture should be used and if it is ever “ok”. There are many different points of view and both sides have very clear, convincing arguments on whether torture should be used as a way to obtain information. One side says that torture is not necessary even in extreme cases. The other side it should be used if it mandatory. Although these sound like a compromise they do have a few conflicting ideas. Even though both essays are trying to sway the reader to one side or another, it is the reader’s choice on how he or she feels on torture.
The first piece I chose was “The Case for Torture” the author of the essay claims there are certain times when the only interrogating tool to use is torture. The author feels that in extreme cases torture should be used to gain knowledge especially when human life is at stake. One example is if there was a bomb and a terrorist knew where it was and would not tell and millions of people would be killed. In this case the author sees fit that the only way to get any useable information is using pain. The author feels if torture is a way to save millions of lives then it is justifiable.
Also, in the case of torture, torture should not be used as punishment. It should only be used to prevent something from happening. The function of using this argument is not to bring anyone back that was a victim or harmed, but rather to get a truthful confession or to prevent that person from causing harm to others. Towards the end of the essay the author states that torture should only be used for the guilty and to save innocent lives. The biggest argument that the author uses is the fact that torture should only be used in extreme cases. He uses examples that many people could relate to.
This makes all of the arguments stronger and more convincing. He even uses new born babies in one of his examples so there is even an emotional aspect of his arguments. He is quite persuasive mainly because I do think torture is justifiable in this case. The weaknesses I could find is his counter arguments. He would ask questions then answer them for you, which makes the arguments that more persuasive. The second essay “Yes, It Should Be “On the Books”” was a very persuasive essay as well. The author makes it clear that too many times rules have been broken and torture has been used.
The proper way to handle things is not to use it even if it means people are killed because of this. His whole view is on how it is important to follow the rules and laws. If torture is a means of getting information then a judge should issue a warrant of torture. He uses an example of police officers that chocked a suspect to get information on where the victim was. The police were not charged with anything but the author makes it clear that no warrant of torture would be issued for the mere fact there was not enough evidence.
He also uses former presidents of the United States as people who did thing “off the books”. Like when Kennedy Okayed the attempts to assassinate Fidel Castro. His argument is not as clear as the first. He wants to get rid of the use of torture all together. But in extreme cases a warrant should be issued by a judge so that everything is done according to law. I thought this was not a strong argument because there is not a good clear thesis the author claims he wants to get rid of torture but in the next sentence says well torture is ok if a judge says it is ok.
He is not that persuasive either, he has a lot of good examples but he does not fully explain them. The author just lists a number or examples but it is one after another and doesn’t explain why each example is relevant to his argument. Both arguments state that in an extreme case torture is ok. This makes it seem that they are both for the same thing, this is false. One says that torture is ok if lives are in danger while the other says if lives are in danger we should get a warrant to use torture.
The one that had the most persuasion was the first argument merely because it had support, convincing examples, and it appealed to my emotions. No, I did not cry. Although both arguments had weak counter arguments their examples made up for it. The problem I had was I had a biased mindset before reading the essays. I have always felt torture is ok as long as there is just cause. The first argument appealed more to me then the second. Although both arguments got there points across the first argument was just a stronger argument it used facts nd surveys to make the argument that more convincing. The question was asked if torture was justifiable. There are many answers to this question. The two essays were well thought out and made me really think hard about this topic. The arguments made were both convincing but due to my nature I held my ground and was convinced more that torture is alright to use in extreme cases. The evidence used was also well put together. In the end, it is up to each individual to decide whether torture is “ok” to use or not, even in the most extreme cases.