The Big Three: Close Guantanamo?
May 3rd, 2013
01:16 PM ET

The Big Three: Close Guantanamo?

By Dean Obeidallah, Special to CNN

Editor's Note: Listen to the full story in our player above, and join the conversation in our comments section below. Dean Obeidallah, a former attorney, is a political comedian and frequent commentator on various TV networks including CNN. He is the editor of the politics blog The Dean's Report and co-host of a new CNN podcast "The Big Three" that looks at the top three stories of the week. Follow him on Twitter @deanofcomedy.

(CNN) – "Terrorists use Guantanamo Bay prison to recruit new members."

Aasif Mandvi, "The Daily Show's" senior correspondent, passionately made this argument as our first guest ever on the weekly CNN podcast "The Big Three."

Mandvi thinks it's time to close Guantanamo Bay now - and I couldn't agree with him more. Should the U.S. government close Gitmo and put the prisoners not cleared for release on trial? That's the first issue in this week's episode of "The Big Three," which features CNN contributors Margaret Hoover, John Avlon and me.

Here is a brief summary of the big three issues we took on:

1. Guantanamo Bay Prison - close it now? Our guest, Mandvi, emphatically argued yes. Hoover noted that more than 40 of the prisoners have been deemed too violent to ever be released. Avlon expressed concerns that national security secrets could be released if these prisoners were tried in open court.

2. Is Jason Collins, the NBA player who came out of the closet, the Jackie Robinson of gay athletes? While all three of us applauded Collins' courage in coming out, we disagreed over its significance when compared to Jackie Robinson. Avlon argued that Robinson was far more important because racism was a much more polarizing issue at the time and also, Robinson was a far superior athlete. We all agreed, though some of the criticism Collins received makes it clear the fight to end homophobia still has a long way to go.

3. Who will voters pick in the congressional special election in South Carolina next week? Mark Sanford, a Republican former governor who famously cheated on his wife by sneaking off to Argentina, or Elizabeth Colbert Busch, a liberal-ish Democrat who is the sister of Comedy Central's Stephen Colbert?


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