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In criminal cases in the US, the defendant is presumed innocent until proven guilty. This is a human right and one America ought to be proud to espouse. Thousands, if not millions, fought to secure such rights over centuries before there even was an America. Demanding our allies and our enemies alike respect such human rights based on American principles is a noble role for America to play in the world.

Jamal Khashoggi

Common sense, however, still makes sense of some things, having its own “presumptions.” One such common sense fact is you can judge people by the sort they hang with. Those one hangs with are usually those one respects or admires or feels comfortable with, because one is like them. Even in a US criminal cases one does not abandon one’s common sense when sitting on a jury in judgment even while honoring the presumption of innocence.

The recent disappearance and probable killing of Saudi national but US resident journalist Jamal Khashoggi has some common-sense problems. Something about it seems rotten.

The recent disappearance and probable killing of Saudi national but US resident journalist Jamal Khashoggi has some common-sense problems. Something about it seems rotten. He enters the Saudi Consulate in Turkey but doesn’t appear to come out. Known associates of the Saudi Crown Prince, including some “security” types, enter Turkey on diplomatic and other lawful passports a few days before the disappearance. The prior history of the Journalist and the Crown Prince includes some apparent bad blood as the Journalist morphed from an apologist for the Saudi State to a critic and even a patriot for the Saudi peoples’ human rights against their own government. Common sense informs one this is not the kind of thing Kings and Princes, especially in Saudi Arabia, take very kindly.

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Common sense senses something is wrong. Of course, many other indicators support this common sensing, the Yemen atrocity, the suppression of human rights within Saudi Arabia by the government, its support of Wahhabism worldwide with its teachings of violence and hate, to identify but a few. Common sense warns we ought to be very suspicious and demand a full investigation, and if the facts support it, condemnation must follow and judgment be imposed.

This not being a criminal case in the US, the presumption of innocence need not apply at this time. Inferences can be drawn based on common sense. Not only regarding the perpetrators and their superiors, such as Kings and Princes, but as to their allies, apologists and supporters as well.

Common sense has long warned that “those who lie down with camels may rise with fleas.” America ought to have little truck with Kings and Princes as a matter of principle – after all our Revolution was fought to repudiate their legitimacy as a matter of natural right. This natural right was supported by a long history of Kings and Princes utilizing murder as a weapon of choice against opponents. It was their hallmark. It is against such foulness that people striving for decency ought to rebel, as did Americans, rejecting such power and abuse by government.

Was this murder most foul? If it proves to be, what may one conclude about the character of those who defend its probable perpetrators? Is it wise to trust such persons with the instrumentalities and power of government? Common sense provides the answers to these questions.