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Genuine politics cannot risk a step without first having demonstrated its fidelity to morality, and even though politics may justly be called a difficult art, its combination with morality is no art at all; for morality slices in two the knot which others flounder in the face of once they fall into squabbling. Human rights must be kept whole, no matter what that may cost the powers that be. In this case there must be no compromise, no median worked out between pragmatically oriented rights (between rights and utilitarianism)–all politics must bend its knee before human rights, and only in this fashion may politics ever aspire to reach the stage where it will illuminate humanity.
–Immanuel Kant, Zum ewigen Frieden – Anhang II (1795) in: Sämtliche Werke vol. 5, p. 703 (Grand Duke Wilhelm Ernst ed. 1927)(S.H. transl.)
More from Scott Horton:
Mark Denbeaux on the NCIS cover-up of three “suicides” at Guantánamo Bay Detention Camp
From the June 2014 issue
No Comment — March 28, 2014, 12:32 pm
On CIA secrecy, torture, and war-making powers
Chances that an organ transplanted in New York City last year came from a murder victim:
Two thirds of U.S. teenagers experience uncontrollable rage.
In Gainesville, Florida, a drunk man who jumped out of his pickup truck to yell at the driver in front of him was run over by his own vehicle.
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“I hope that after reading the following pages the leaders of the Y. M. C. A. will start a campaign to induce good young men to do nothing. If so, I shall not have lived in vain.”