Could 19th Century plan stop piracy?

In answer to an article by Paul Reynolds on the BBC News website:

Could 19th Century plan stop piracy?

International efforts to thwart Somali piracy would appear to be floundering. Perhaps words from the 19th Century could offer a solution, writes the BBC News website’s world affairs correspondent Paul Reynolds.

I sent the following reply:

Per your request in your article referenced below:
http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/africa/7991512.stm

Our US Constitution already has a means to fight not only pirates but terrorists also. Article One grants the Congress power to issue Letters of Marque and Reprisal. I know that such an idea may sound quite antique but so does the idea of Piracy. Would that the savants of the House of Representatives had enough sense to support Congressman Ron Paul’s act, “Marque and Reprisal Act of 2001.” As usual, there is often a law already on the books to take care of most situations. However, lest they seem too irrelevant, our law makers assiduously go about looking to make new laws when the old laws would work just fine if they were only enforced.

Yours truly,

Dr. Neill H. Payne,
Black Mountain, NC

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