A remarkable thing happened yesterday. Dianne Feinstein, Carl Levin, and John McCain sent a letter to Michael Lynton, the CEO of Sony Pictures Entertainment. It was regarding the portrayal of torture in the new film, Zero Dark Thirty. Feinstein does it as the chairman of the Senate Select Committee on Intelligence.
It is a most reasonable, if direct, letter. They point out that they understand that writers make things up to tell a more dramatic story. Their concern is with the opening of the film which displays on the screen, “Based on first-hand accounts of actual events.” They call for the producers to make clear that torture was not helpful in the hunt for Osama bin Laden.
They spend more than a page discussing not only the ineffectiveness of torture in this particular case but in general. And they are very concerned about what the Bush (never mentioned by name) torture program has done to the soul of America. They end the letter:
It is rare that I feel pride about an elected representative. This is a very good letter and it is nice to see some people in power stand up for at least a small part of what I always believed were this country’s values.