Yes, the binary mind recognizes difference. But, it is a difference that is oppositional, like the two ends of a seesaw, one up and one down and vice versa. Or male and female, hard and soft, night and day -- two antagonistic versions of the same thing. Indeed, the antagonism seems central. It's why the Cons have to be antagonistic towards a President that's not one of them.
Is that to say that the Cons have binary minds? Not necessarily. Some people are binary thinkers without being antagonistic to those who are not like themselves. Whether they can wish them well, I'm not sure.
In any event, my purpose in bringing it up is to discuss how it happens that the binary mind cannot come to grips with a body of law that's designed to be variably effective, depending on the social standing of the person it affects.
In a sense, the law, as addressed and outlined in the Constitution of the United States is discriminatory, even now that the blatant subordination of some persons, by categorizing them as less-than-human property to be owned, has been taken out. That is, in addition to discriminating between natural born citizens and everyone else when it comes to the designation of the President, the "law of the land" discriminates between the people, who govern, and the people who serve as their agents.
"Agents of government," a phrase I owe to Justice Anthony Kenndy's disquisition on the rule of law, are subject to a different regimen than the ordinary persons within the jurisdiction of the Constitution, whose interest in justice and equitable behavior is to be served. That's because the agents of government, even those who draft rules and procedures for how that service is to be carried out, are hired to serve. It's what they get paid for even though, on many a minor board or commission, the pay consists of little more than a seat at a table and a note-taker with a pad. Public officials, whether elected by a large body or appointed by a few, are public servants, stewards who pledge to follow the law.
The law is different. As it applies to public servants, it tells them what to do -- nothing more and nothing less. As it applies to ordinary persons, citizen and non-citizen alike, the law directs what they may not do, without risking some negative consequence--i.e. punitive measures to "correct" behavior. This is a difference with a major distinction. Where ordinary persons are to be restricted or restrained AFTER they have committed an infraction, agents of government are effectively coerced to perform certain (enumerated) duties or risk being dismissed.
Some of our agents of government don't seem to understand that and perhaps many citizens don't understand that either. That would account, on the one hand, for the failure to remove especially those agents of government that don't serve (some even announce it proudly) and, on the other, for citizens putting up with being coerced by the very people we've hired to serve.
Certainly, the evidence of this basic misunderstanding is difficult to miss. How else can it be explained that the representatives assembled in Congress would presume to attempt to regulate what ordinary adult persons ingest, inhale and inject? Nor, for that matter, would they consider it appropriate to inspect how, when and with whom ordinary persons communicate with each other, whether electronically or on paper. Apparently, our agents of government have become confused and do not understand that the requirements of their positions -- to be subservient, open, compliant and responsive -- simply don't apply to ordinary people.
They are doing unto others as is done to (or expected of) them and that's just plain wrong. It's not a binary system. Even if it were tit for tat, the tat is comprised of many more variables, including, perhaps most importantly when the issue is liberty, the option not to participate at all. Individuals are entitled to "just say no" and even refuse to respond to questions. Agents of government aren't. They can claim a right to secrecy, but only if we let them get away with it and fail to dismiss them for their insubordination.
(Obviously, penalizing Manning for publicizing malfeasance is overreaching. On the other hand, our system of justice depends on real cases being tried. If overreaching and claims to secrecy are to be addressed, there has to be a case).
The individual's right to privacy cannot be justifiably expanded into a right to secrecy for agents of government. "Limited government" means that agents of government not only have fewer rights than ordinary persons, but more obligations. And there's the rub. It seems a whole slew of people have been attracted to hiring themselves out as stewards under the mistaken impression that they'll have no obligation to actually work for their pay. Somehow, that the Constitution is a compendium of mays and musts has escaped them.
That's probably our fault. We, the people, have failed at the task of law enforcement. Or we have been bullied out of that role by scofflaws, who would just as soon substitute the law of the jungle (catch as catch can) for the rule of law (take what you've made and leave other people's stuff alone). I see there is, again, some grousing about the "endless campaign." Well, that's what there's got to be. If we're going to be civil, then our attention to governing has to be constant. Governance is not automatic like a mosquito sucking blood.
The law is different.