Signatories include philosophy professor Kwame Appiah, comparative literature professor Peter Brooks, astrophysical sciences professors Bruce Draine and Gillian Knapp, politics professor Philip Pettit, Wilson School professor Kim Scheppele and Wendy Seltzer at the Center for Information Technology Policy.
The petition asserts that Manning is being held “under degrading and inhumane conditions that are illegal and immoral,” such as being forced to sleep and present himself for inspection while naked and being placed on improper suicide watch.
“He is not allowed to doze off or relax during the day, but must answer the question ‘Are you OK?’ verbally and in the affirmative every five minutes,” the petition states. “At night, he is awakened to be asked again ‘Are you OK?’ every time he turns his back to the cell door or covers his head with a blanket so that the guards cannot see his face.”
The petition, which was printed in The New York Review of Books, calls for the U.S. government to properly try Manning according to law and cease its “degrading and inhumane pretrial punishment.”
“President Obama was once a professor of constitutional law and entered the national stage as an eloquent moral leader,” the petition states. “The question now, however, is whether his conduct as commander in chief meets fundamental standards of decency ... He should require the Pentagon publicly to document the grounds for its extraordinary actions — and immediately end those that cannot withstand the light of day.”
Original URL: http://www.dailyprincetonian.com/2011/04/13/28239/