Earlier this week I received a copy of Rep. Peter King’s March 2012 “Special Report from Washington”.
The front page features articles involving Rep. King’s hearings on Islamic radicalization in the US military and the Seaford congressman's call to investigate the leaking of sensitive or classified data to a Hollywood company producing a film on the killing of Osama bin Laden. All I could think of was Sen. Joe McCarthy and HUAC (not to mention the waste of money).
For those of you who are too young to remember or are not students of American history I would urge you to look into what became known as McCarthyism. Starting in 1950, when McCarthy claimed having a list of 205 “known Communists” working for the State Department until his ultimate denouement in the now [in]famous Army - McCarthy hearings in 1954, Sen. McCarthy, and for years prior thereto his counterparts on the House un-American Activities Committee (aka “HUAC”) trampled on the constitutional rights of hundreds of Americans and institutions based upon no more than mere allegations of disloyalty. Does anyone see a slippery slope here?
McCarthy was finally brought low by iconic TV journalist Edward R. Morrow who in a comment concluding one of his shows about McCarthy stated in part “We must remember always that accusation is not proof and that conviction depends upon evidence and due process of law”. Another scholar once said something to the effect that those who do not heed the lessons of history are condemned to repeat its mistakes. Perhaps Rep. King should read some history in lieu of writing semi autobiographical novels.