The law is there for those times people don't want to abide by it.
The rights of American citizens aren't documented for those times when we think we should give them those rights.
The rights of American citizens are documented for those times when people don't want to grant those rights.
The Boston bombing suspect, Dzhokhar Tsarnaev, is an American citizen.1 Thus, he has rights. Yes, (if guilty, and he very probably is) he may be guilty of murder. He may even be guilty of an act of terrorism. But American citizens have rights. He cannot be treated as an enemy combatant. He cannot be questioned without a lawyer. And he certainly can't disappear into Guantanamo with brief little news clips released every six months or so, and America having no idea if he is being tortured, treated fairly, etc.
These rights are not optional.
We can't set them aside because of "special circumstances."
The rights of American citizens are documented precisely FOR circumstances like this. When people want to take away a citizen's rights because of "circumstances" is when we must ensure that those rights are protected.
I realize that this post won't be popular. I'm defending the rights of the Boston bombing suspect. But rights aren't optional. They apply to all citizens.
1. Savage, C. (April 21, 2013). G.O.P. lawmakers push to have Boston suspect questioned as enemy combatant. The New York Times. Retrieved from: http://www.nytimes.com/2013/04/22/us/gop-lawmakers-push-to-hold-boston-suspect-as-enemy-combatant.html?pagewanted=all