Target: US District Judge Judith Royce Lamberth
Goal: Express support for Justice Lamberth’s urge to halt the invasive and intolerant practice of genital-pat downs at Guantanamo Bay.
Inmates at Guantanamo Bay, many of whom are still waiting to be formally charged, are being discouraged from meeting with their lawyers due to the installation of a new “genital pat down” procedure set forth in May. This procedure, according to Guantanamo lawyers, began when detainees were ordered to meet their legal counsel off-site. Many detainees cannot receive the genital pat-down due to the nature of their religious and cultural beliefs. Subsequently, many detainees are choosing not to meet their legal counsel. The genital pat-down procedure began after the arrival of a new Commander.
Judge Judith Royce Lamberth believes that this procedure and its effects on detainees’ access to legal counsel “stand in stark contrast to the president’s insistence on judicial review for every detainee.” She has issued a thirty-five page report explaining the illegality of the new procedure and ordering its cessation. Through this ruling, Judge Lamberth has stood up for the most voiceless of inmates under American jurisdiction. A spokesperson from Guantanamo has stated that the prison’s staff will “accommodate the ruling.” Judge Lamberth’s concern for both cultural respect and due process on behalf of Guantanamo Bay inmates is commendable. Inmates are human beings, and deserve to be treated as such. Detainees at Guantanamo Bay Penitentiary are no exception. Thank Judge Judith Royce Lamberth for standing up for human rights at Guantanamo Bay Penitentiary.
Dear Judge Judith Royce Lamberth,
Thank you for speaking out against the unjust genital pat down procedures occurring at Guantanamo Bay Penitentiary. Inmates who are culturally and spiritually averse to genital pat downs are given a catch-22; they can either go against the tenets and values of their faith, which in many cases is the only thing many inmates have to hold on to, or they can abdicate their right to legal counsel. Neither of these choices is just, and your ruling speaks to this.
As you are well aware, many detainees at Guantanamo Bay have yet to be charged with any formal crime. In addition, they have been subjected to torturous prison conditions, including sleep and sensory deprivation. It is important to send a message that prison inmates do not abdicate their human rights once incarcerated. Your ruling has shown the brass at Guantanamo Bay that their policies and procedures are still subject to judicial review, and that the Federal Court takes the cultural and legal rights of detainees seriously. By forcing the staff at Guantanamo Bay to change their policy regarding invasive genital pat downs, you have helped the U.S.A. take a small step toward changing its global reputation regarding human rights violations and cultural sensitivity. Thank you for your sincere and valiant effort.
[Your Name Here]