Debate and Discussion

Social Conservatives - Personal Privacy Butt-inskys, or Morality Police?
Ronson at 6:39PM, Oct. 12, 2008
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TOPIC: Social Conservatives - Personal Privacy Butt-inskys, or Morality Police?

My Position: social conservatives usually take 3 major stances that affect their voting (in the US):

1. No recognition of the homosexual lifestyle by the government.
2. No restrictions to firearms.
3. No abortions.


Feel free to throw in a few more if you'd like. But here's my point:

#1 and #3 are not something you need to worry about personally if you are not homosexual or if you do not choose to have an abortion. Therefore, they are morality judgements you seek to make others (even those who disagree with you) bound by law to follow.

Regardless of your stance on these issues, homosexuality will not go away and neither will abortions. (Like the war on drugs, another issue you could add to this list, these things will occur and cannot be legislated away). There is plenty of proof that these things have existed longer than recorded time, and equal proof that criminalizing it will just make it go underground and leave people in much more vulnerable positions.

Therefore, are people who call themselves socially conservatives butting into other people's lives for no reason, or do they have the right to police people's lifestyles?

COUNTERPOINT:
Since many liberals (but not a majority, unlike the social conservatives) want to ban guns, is their stance not equally subject to a “morality police” argument?

I think it is, but will also mention that social conservatives seem to be all right with people NOT owning automatic weapons, tanks, bazookas or nuclear weapons. Therefore, the debate is only about where to draw the lines and not whether or not the lines should exist. Both sides believe there have to be lines in this case. In the case of gays and abortions, it seems to be an all or nothing proposal.

_________

RESTRICTIONS OF THIS DEBATE(which will be broken in about five seconds, I think)

- If you disagree with the above, explain to me why your moral authority trumps others.

- If you agree with the above, explain to me if you seek to have your moral authority trump others.

- If you don't believe anyone's moral authority trumps anyone else's, tell me how anyone can have a society that dispenses truth, honor and justice.

- Debate about whether there is a new way to look at these issues, which have been tearing this country (the US) apart for so many years.
last edited on July 14, 2011 3:10PM
ozoneocean at 9:10PM, Oct. 12, 2008
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Well the gun restriction issue isn't about moral authority as far as I can see; for the people who support it, it's a safety issue. The idea is that lower gun ownership mean less gun crime, which mean less likelihood of themselves being shot. :)
-(whether that rationale is valid is irrelevant, what matters is that it isn't a moral issue for them)
-The same for homosexuals or people with homosexual friends who support laws regarding them, and abortion for young women and many of the people advocating their rights; not about “moral authority”, more about needing the practical benefits of legislation that directly affect them and their families in a real way.

—————-
I can't see how these socially conservative opinions have any validity, these are the sorts of potions I took as a child before I knew much about the world, and that's generally how most of these conservative positions seem: childishly reactionary, malformed, ignorant about the world and the feelings and ideas of others: Socially immature.

As for “Moral Authority”, I don't know. If we're to take the above examples then “Moral Authority” apparently means “malformed immature opinions on how others should live their lives”. If that's the case *then perhaps people should stay in school until they're 60 so hopefully they've got some time to grow out of that sort of thing. :)
*And that's my “moral authority” in action right there I'd say… :)
 
last edited on July 14, 2011 2:32PM
DAJB at 12:48AM, Oct. 13, 2008
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I think the difference here is what you think the law should be there to do. Most people would, I think, agree that laws should exist to protect people from each other. The greyer areas are where laws exist to protect people from themselves (the so-called “nanny state” laws).

The homosexuality issue is at one end of that spectrum. Being a homosexual doesn't in and of itself harm anyone and, therefore, those who object to equal rights for gay men and lesbians can only do so on supposedly moral grounds.

Gun control is at the other end of the spectrum. Here, morality has little or nothing to do with it. Those who object to unrestricted gun ownership tend to do so because they want to protect others, not because it's inherently wrong.

Banning abortion, it seems to me, falls somewhere in the middle. For some (those who believe an unborn child is a person and therefore has rights from the second it's conceived), it's up there with gun control - a measure to protect the lives of another. For others (those who believe there is a period when the fetus is nothing more than a bunch of multiplying cells), it ranks with homosexuality as a life choice that should be left to the individual.

The fascinating thing is that the same group can advocate banning abortions on the basis they want to protect life and support unrestricted ownership of firearms. It seems to me, these positions should be poles apart!
last edited on July 14, 2011 12:03PM
lothar at 3:49AM, Oct. 13, 2008
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i would like to throw in War ! it seems to be an almost overlooked issue. i'm not talking just about the war in Iraq . any war, the ideology of war. does that qualify as a social issue? it may not effect Americans so much ,unless you are in the military, but it sure effects people in those countries that America makes war on. to those people it's a social issue, especially when it's destroying their society.

it seems to me that social conservatives are almost always pro war. and while this may go hand in hand with #2, it seems to directly contradict #3 i always wonder how the same people that care so much about the unborn can care less about the already born. that leads me to believe that social conservatism is more about power than morality . primitive male domination .
#1 obviously they oppose even the idea of homosexuals because they feel it somehow threatens their own masculine pride.
#2 the gun is just an artificial and enhanced penis, their scared to death to lose their units
#3 all about controlling women , old as time .

as far as the morality question goes
#1 is a no brainer , it's already in the constitution , everybody should have the same rights , regardless,
#2 if more guns equals more murder , than it seems kinda immoral to have all these guns out there
#3 grey area , but who realy considers a first trimester fetus a person? anyway i think this is an issue that only women should be allowed to decide, maybe have a referendum where only women can vote.

#4? ]war] this is the ultimate moral issue , but sadly it gets very little attention, it is so ingrained in the nation that there is hardly any question about it anymore, its all about how we can wage the war , not about if we should or not. anyone who calls themselves a social conservative on moral grounds and refuses to question the legitimacy of War is a fraud .
last edited on July 14, 2011 1:45PM
Loud_G at 5:49AM, Oct. 13, 2008
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Wow, I like how this debate has ALREADY leapt to the stance of those weirdos who disagree with me are stupid and should go to school for (what was it?) 60 years.

Nice. Great way to set the tone for a debate on some of THE most divisive issues in politics today.

First off, I consider myself both an educated man AND socially conservative. I think about things before a vote. I analyze all the sides of an issue (because there are never only two sides to a given political issue and anyone who thinks there are…I could say well, maybe THEY need that 60 years of schooling (but that would be mean and spiteful)….)


I've also never understood why conservatives a pro guns. I understand why someone (in a general sense) might be, for constitutional reasons, and protection. However, I've never understood why (like has been mentioned above) that issue is considered a conservative one. I don't really like guns personally. Nor do I ever plan on owning one.


As for abortions, well that is a very tricky subject here and in the political arena. I for one do not think the whim or desire of one person should determine whether or not another person lives. Unless there is some sort of danger to health in some way, or some other equally valid reason, then there is no way a life should be snuffed out.

BUT I'm not just worried about human life, even though it ranks the highest on my scale. Life in general ought to be cherished and taken only when necessary and in the most humane way possible. This is why hunting/killing for sport is not high on my list of things I like. Hunting for food, fine.

So if I worry about the squirrel that got hit by a car, why should I worry less about the child who might get ripped out of its womb? Life to me, is life.

Lothar, I'm very disappointed in your initial ‘arguments’ they seem very cynical and not very generous. They may be jokes, I can't tell in an online forum, or them may be your firmly held beliefs. But either way, they do not help to create a friendly debate environment where people try to honestly understand the viewpoints of others.

Though, Lothar, I do agree with you about the importance of discussing war. I for one see war as a last resort. Not something to enter lightly. It should not be waged except when to not go to war would hurt the country more than the war itself.

However, all the wishing in the world is not going to take war away. Lets be realistic. As much as you or I don't want it to happen, there is going to be someone,somewhere else who thinks it should. And if you get leaders of foreign countries who think it should, it will. Whether we want it or not.
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last edited on July 14, 2011 1:46PM
dueeast at 6:38AM, Oct. 13, 2008
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Loud_G, I think we can count the number of conservatives (whether social or financial) on DD as only a handful. That in itself is not a bad thing but given the higher input of more liberal viewpoints, it can make discussions and debates that much harder.

I too do not like the way this “debate” has already been framed. It reminds me of why I got out of journalism, which I studied 2 years in middle school, 4 years in high school where I won state and national awards and was an “A” journalism student in college. My point is, I was totally committed to it as a profession. However, I dropped it like a hot potato when I saw the bias in the industry, totally contrary to the fundamentals of the trade. When the person (or newspaper or magazine or broadcaster) starts off with their opinion, and convey that their opinion is the ONLY sane or reasonable position, then there is no room for debate, at least in their minds.

The same applies to discussion and debate. One should be willing to hear and consider the other side of the discussion, whether or not they will ever agree, without pretense or contempt. So why bring it up under the false pretense of wanting discussion when your point seems to be to berate and ridicule those who disagree with you? That's not a discussion or a debate, it's a farce.
last edited on July 14, 2011 12:18PM
ozoneocean at 7:13AM, Oct. 13, 2008
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I love how you guys take what I say personally. ;)

I'm arguing concepts, not people. What I've done is re-frame the idea of “moral Authority” in my own way to be not about a stance in reference to one's “core values”; Instead I've portrayed “moral Authority” as a tool for justifying one's own prejudice :)

Which I thought I very humorously demonstrated with my end paragraph about going to school for 60 years. I even pointed to that openly at the end there. lol!
 
last edited on July 14, 2011 2:32PM
dueeast at 7:27AM, Oct. 13, 2008
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Actually, your posts almost never bother me, OO. lol!

ozoneocean
I love how you guys take what I say personally. ;)

I'm arguing concepts, not people. What I've done is re-frame the idea of “moral Authority” in my own way to be not about a stance in reference to one's “core values”; Instead I've portrayed “moral Authority” as a tool for justifying one's own prejudice :)

Which I thought I very humorously demonstrated with my end paragraph about going to school for 60 years. I even pointed to that openly at the end there. lol!
last edited on July 14, 2011 12:18PM
ozoneocean at 7:52AM, Oct. 13, 2008
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I have no idea how to take that ^_^

But come on, let's discuss the idea of "Moral Authority". ;)

————————————–
I'll start all over again from here:

Personally, I don't think there really is such a thing. If people don't have a personal stake in the concepts (abortion, homosexuality etc), then they have a secondary stake, which would be they're a family member or friend of someone who has a more personal role. If they don't have a secondary stake, then they're at a bit more of a distance from the situation. in that case there are a whole range of things that are going to have a stronger influence on their decision making: compassion and empathy for fellow human beings, past experiences, the opinions of people they read in newspapers and see on TV, what those around them think (church, workmates, community group etc.), what they've learned and read in the past (religion, schooling, or just general reading), and so on.

All those factors come together and help people make up their minds about these things. So I suppose if someone were to defer to some idea of “Moral Authority” then you should find them a little suspect, because they probably don't know their minds well enough to know why they think that way.
 
last edited on July 14, 2011 2:32PM
dueeast at 8:51AM, Oct. 13, 2008
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It was a compliment. B)

I'm gonna drop some jaws here, but I actually agree with you, OO. I don't believe in “Moral Authority” or “Moral Superiority,” etc., etc. People have convictions and beliefs and stakes in things on a personal level. I don't think there's much question about that. And I don't think it's just conservatives, that's everyone.

Sure, we can discuss the reasons why conservatives tend to believe what they believe on these relevant issues. Loud_G did a pretty good job starting that.

For Ronson: “Social Conservatives - Personal Privacy Butt-inskys, or Morality Police?” is not exactly the best title for a “fair” discussion and debate. It doesn't exactly leave room for anything positive concerning social conservatives. It makes us sound like pervs or nazis. I appreciate OO's redirection.

ozoneocean
I have no idea how to take that ^_^

But come on, let's discuss the idea of "Moral Authority". ;)

————————————–
I'll start all over again from here:

Personally, I don't think there really is such a thing. If people don't have a personal stake in the concepts (abortion, homosexuality etc), then they have a secondary stake, which would be they're a family member or friend of someone who has a more personal role. If they don't have a secondary stake, then they're at a bit more of a distance from the situation. in that case there are a whole range of things that are going to have a stronger influence on their decision making: compassion and empathy for fellow human beings, past experiences, the opinions of people they read in newspapers and see on TV, what those around them think (church, workmates, community group etc.), what they've learned and read in the past (religion, schooling, or just general reading), and so on.

All those factors come together and help people make up their minds about these things. So I suppose if someone were to defer to some idea of “Moral Authority” then you should find them a little suspect, because they probably don't know their minds well enough to know why they think that way.
last edited on July 14, 2011 12:18PM
isukun at 10:50AM, Oct. 13, 2008
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it seems to me that social conservatives are almost always pro war. and while this may go hand in hand with #2, it seems to directly contradict #3 i always wonder how the same people that care so much about the unborn can care less about the already born.

A lot of that is because people think of protecting themselves and their countrymen over protecting people they will never meet in a country far away. That's why war is always about protecting our interests or our people from something or other, no matter how unbelievable. War is about dehumanizing one's enemy to justify the horrible things you do for reasons that usually aren't justifiable.

The issue I tend to get hung up on with the social conservatives, however, is their support of the death penalty. It's not so much the support of the laws that bother me as much as the reasons you hear every time a juror or family member is interviewed for supporting such a decision. Lets just say I've heard the words “God's justice” thrown around a lot as well as the “eye for an eye” quote. You want an issue that a lot of people support for moral reasons, that's it.
last edited on July 14, 2011 1:04PM
Ronson at 5:09AM, Oct. 14, 2008
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dueeast
For Ronson: “Social Conservatives - Personal Privacy Butt-inskys, or Morality Police?” is not exactly the best title for a “fair” discussion and debate. It doesn't exactly leave room for anything positive concerning social conservatives. It makes us sound like pervs or nazis. I appreciate OO's redirection.

Okay, so what should it be? I've read a bunch of threads in the debate section where people claim to be social conservatives - which usually revolves around the three issues I listed above.

I was hoping we wouldn't be arguing about the reasons why people hold these socially conservative beliefs, but rather on why they want to make it a part of our legal system. I also included the issue of guns, because that's where liberals seek to control the legal system in a similar fashion.

I was going through various other debate threads, and all too often I'd see “I'm a social conservative, and this is why I would do X” … which almost always involved government intrusion.

I want to know why one can't hold socially conservative values without the desire to force others to live as they do. And if that's phrased too offensively, please tell me how to reword it so that it isn't offensive because I don't know how.

——–

LOTHAR: I didn't include “War” as an issue because both conservatives and liberals still believe that war is sometimes the only option. And in this political climate, it's easy to think the conservatives fall prey to it more. But when Clinton was president, it was the conservatives that begged for diplomacy and worried for the lives of our soldiers when he sent them into harm's way.

You and I might realize that war is just a delaying tactic from facing the causes of conflict - as well as a military industrial complex's wet dream - but in the United States at least, war is almost always justifiable by any ideology.

My wife was mentioning that to me the other day. She said that no matter who wins the upcoming presidential election, that person will order people to be killed and will funnel money (in some form or another) into the corporate machine. A sobering thought, and a shame. But think about how long a candidate professing to be a pacifist who would never go to war would last. (Think: Dennis Kucinich)
last edited on July 14, 2011 3:10PM
dueeast at 6:53AM, Oct. 14, 2008
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You know what, Ronson? You and I are of similar view on this one. The people you're describing, the one who have made the comments you paraphrased, are what I would call self-righteous social conservatives. And frankly, I can't stand any perspective that holds a holier-than-thou viewpoint, whether it's so-called religious people or political activists. It's less than genuine and a bully-like control tactic that is designed to ultimately control people's lives. It was also the excuse used to justify abuses by the Republican party, which is one of the things that disenchanted me with them (not enough to go Democrat, but at least Independent).

A lot of the debate tends to boil down to what is constitutional, and the belief that the Constitution is the legal ideal, despite the not-so-lovely lives of some, if not all, of the Founding Fathers. The ideals and aspirations framed in the Constitution did help establish the United States as different from the rest of the world. Some would argue for softening it or adapting it to modern times, which already has happened to some degree by present legal interpretations, bills and rulings (the McCain-Feingold Act comes to mind, limiting political free speech; I haven't forgotten that).

So why don't we explore that, at least for a bit? Where do we line up when it comes to the Constitution and how it has impacted on current (and pending) legal rulings on the issues you brought up and are curious about?

I support the Constitution concerning the right to bear arms. I personally do not own a firearm, nor do I wish to. I have no need for it. But I think people should have the choice, and with it comes the responsibility. If people abuse that responsibility, then the full weight of the law should fall on them.

On the homosexuality issue, particularly in the military, there is no way the Constitution as it is could possibly take any stand on this, in my opinion. Therefore, it is up to the lower courts and perhaps ultimately, the Supreme Court. That is what it's there for.

On abortion, even though I may not like the current law, it's the law. And until the law does something unconstitutional, like tell me what I can do concerning my faith, then I will do my best to obey the law.

I know that's simplistic at best, but it's a start for discussion. I'm curious what others have to say. B)


Ronson
dueeast
For Ronson: “Social Conservatives - Personal Privacy Butt-inskys, or Morality Police?” is not exactly the best title for a “fair” discussion and debate. It doesn't exactly leave room for anything positive concerning social conservatives. It makes us sound like pervs or nazis. I appreciate OO's redirection.

Okay, so what should it be? I've read a bunch of threads in the debate section where people claim to be social conservatives - which usually revolves around the three issues I listed above.

I was hoping we wouldn't be arguing about the reasons why people hold these socially conservative beliefs, but rather on why they want to make it a part of our legal system. I also included the issue of guns, because that's where liberals seek to control the legal system in a similar fashion.

I was going through various other debate threads, and all too often I'd see “I'm a social conservative, and this is why I would do X” … which almost always involved government intrusion.

I want to know why one can't hold socially conservative values without the desire to force others to live as they do. And if that's phrased too offensively, please tell me how to reword it so that it isn't offensive because I don't know how.

——–

LOTHAR: I didn't include “War” as an issue because both conservatives and liberals still believe that war is sometimes the only option. And in this political climate, it's easy to think the conservatives fall prey to it more. But when Clinton was president, it was the conservatives that begged for diplomacy and worried for the lives of our soldiers when he sent them into harm's way.

You and I might realize that war is just a delaying tactic from facing the causes of conflict - as well as a military industrial complex's wet dream - but in the United States at least, war is almost always justifiable by any ideology.

My wife was mentioning that to me the other day. She said that no matter who wins the upcoming presidential election, that person will order people to be killed and will funnel money (in some form or another) into the corporate machine. A sobering thought, and a shame. But think about how long a candidate professing to be a pacifist who would never go to war would last. (Think: Dennis Kucinich)
last edited on July 14, 2011 12:18PM
radarig at 12:03PM, Oct. 14, 2008
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Ronson
I was hoping we wouldn't be arguing about the reasons why people hold these socially conservative beliefs, but rather on why they want to make it a part of our legal system. I also included the issue of guns, because that's where liberals seek to control the legal system in a similar fashion.

I agree with your views on homosexual rights; as far as I can tell, there is no real rationale to restrict the nature of marriage as it holds no effect on what I guess you would call “traditional marriages.” In this case I've always felt it's less forcing others to live as you do and more denying them the right to live as you do. It's a plain civil rights violation and has no business being codified into law.

As to abortion, the problem here is that you've lumped it in with “social-conservative intrusion.” This may be correct if you're viewing it from the standpoint that abortion is a personal issue, but social-conservatives would not. To them it is a defense of the unborn child's rights, as opposed to the mother's rights.

In general I'm unclear as to if you want this debate to focus on “where to draw the lines,” as your said in the first post, and “why they want to make it a part of our legal system” as mentioned in the post I quoted. I still feel that using abortion as an intrusion issue is logically incorrect, but those two prompts are asking different questions.
last edited on July 14, 2011 2:58PM
bravo1102 at 4:06PM, Oct. 14, 2008
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Declaration of Independence
“We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all Men are created equal, that they are endowed by their creator with certain inalienable rights, that among these are Life, Liberty, and the Pursuit of Happiness – That to secure theses Rights, Governments are instituted among Men, deriving their just Powers from the Consent of the Governed,”

I think that answers all the questions. Governments are social contracts to guarantee that people can live together and to set up rules (laws) so we live together respectfully (respecting and protecting another's property, person and freedom)

Morality boils down to the Golden Rule which seems to be a human universal; treating others as you would like to be treated. So laws and governments exist to make sure that happens. Some think that morality extends to every single little thing in a person's life. They invoke a diety that concerns himself more with someone's sexuality than in doing the right thing by his fellow. Every single little thing in a human's life is not the concern of government. That is the Pursuit of happiness right. As long as you don't impinge on another's life, liberty and pursuit it should be acceptable.

Should government legislate these three examples? Yes, because it has come to the point that it effects our society. So government has to make a decision one way or the other. If we respect the words of the Declaration the laws would be specific and respect the liberty of each person; as well as their pursuit of happiness. :)

For marriage: civil union. All joinings of two people are civil unions. If you want marriage that is outside the purview of the state. Takes the moral part out of it so you don't end up with the Church and State mess. Most of the marriage argument ends up with a religious definition of marriage; not a merely legal one. (Read the contract law some time. Replace party first and second part with man and wife and you got marriage. I know too many lawyers. :) )

Government has to do with laws so we get along with each other and respect each other. So for abortion: define personhood. When is the growing mass in the womb a human being? When it is human? Than it is murder. Again the government has to avoid the religious definition which involves ensoulment that is its a human being at the moment of fertilization even though it's only two cells. An accurate definition that respects the rights of all involved.

That's another thing: definitions. This also defines what the rights mean. What is a firearm that someone can own? It is not a fully armed and equipped M1A1HA Main battle tank (though you can own the tank, just not one with active weapons) or a bazooka with active rockets,(though you can own the bazooka.) How about a semiautomatic rifle with a bayonet lug, a thirty round magazine and telescopic sights? A strict interpretation of the Second Amendment should allow for such ownership.

What is a definition that can be agreed upon that works within the existing rights and their limitations that best reflects and respects each person the law applies to.

Simple. (yeah right) Now go forth children and read the Declaration of Independence, and the great works of the enlightenment that influenced it, the US Constituion, the Federalist Papers and Anti-Federalist papers.

Reading the Humanist Manifesto wouldn't hurt either. ;)

Then do the Moral thing, throw the works of the Enlightenment (especailly Voltaire, that dirty old man!) and the humanist manifesto on a flaming pyre along with everything (and anyone) else you (and the belief system of your choice) don't agree with. Why not, it's the way we've been doing things so far. :)
last edited on July 14, 2011 11:33AM
dueeast at 4:31PM, Oct. 14, 2008
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Ya know what, Bravo…that was a beautiful post.

The last part was kinda humorously weird but otherwise a flawless logical argument. I salute you. B)

bravo1102
Declaration of Independence
“We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all Men are created equal, that they are endowed by their creator with certain inalienable rights, that among these are Life, Liberty, and the Pursuit of Happiness – That to secure theses Rights, Governments are instituted among Men, deriving their just Powers from the Consent of the Governed,”

I think that answers all the questions. Governments are social contracts to guarantee that people can live together and to set up rules (laws) so we live together respectfully (respecting and protecting another's property, person and freedom)

Morality boils down to the Golden Rule which seems to be a human universal; treating others as you would like to be treated. So laws and governments exist to make sure that happens. Some think that morality extends to every single little thing in a person's life. They invoke a diety that concerns himself more with someone's sexuality than in doing the right thing by his fellow. Every single little thing in a human's life is not the concern of government. That is the Pursuit of happiness right. As long as you don't impinge on another's life, liberty and pursuit it should be acceptable.

Should government legislate these three examples? Yes, because it has come to the point that it effects our society. So government has to make a decision one way or the other. If we respect the words of the Declaration the laws would be specific and respect the liberty of each person; as well as their pursuit of happiness. :)

For marriage: civil union. All joinings of two people are civil unions. If you want marriage that is outside the purview of the state. Takes the moral part out of it so you don't end up with the Church and State mess. Most of the marriage argument ends up with a religious definition of marriage; not a merely legal one. (Read the contract law some time. Replace party first and second part with man and wife and you got marriage. I know too many lawyers. :) )

Government has to do with laws so we get along with each other and respect each other. So for abortion: define personhood. When is the growing mass in the womb a human being? When it is human? Than it is murder. Again the government has to avoid the religious definition which involves ensoulment that is its a human being at the moment of fertilization even though it's only two cells. An accurate definition that respects the rights of all involved.

That's another thing: definitions. This also defines what the rights mean. What is a firearm that someone can own? It is not a fully armed and equipped M1A1HA Main battle tank (though you can own the tank, just not one with active weapons) or a bazooka with active rockets,(though you can own the bazooka.) How about a semiautomatic rifle with a bayonet lug, a thirty round magazine and telescopic sights? A strict interpretation of the Second Amendment should allow for such ownership.

What is a definition that can be agreed upon that works within the existing rights and their limitations that best reflects and respects each person the law applies to.

Simple. (yeah right) Now go forth children and read the Declaration of Independence, and the great works of the enlightenment that influenced it, the US Constituion, the Federalist Papers and Anti-Federalist papers.

Reading the Humanist Manifesto wouldn't hurt either. ;)

Then do the Moral thing, throw the works of the Enlightenment (especailly Voltaire, that dirty old man!) and the humanist manifesto on a flaming pyre along with everything (and anyone) else you (and the belief system of your choice) don't agree with. Why not, it's the way we've been doing things so far. :)
last edited on July 14, 2011 12:18PM
ozoneocean at 3:50AM, Oct. 15, 2008
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bravo1102
How about a semiautomatic rifle with a bayonet lug, a thirty round magazine and telescopic sights? A strict interpretation of the Second Amendment should allow for such ownership.
I'm sidetracking here rather badly, but if you're really going by “strict interpretations”, then that'd only allow for such ownership in the context of a well maintained militia… So I suppose if you wanted to join a paramilitary group it'd be fine :)
 
last edited on July 14, 2011 2:32PM
Ronson at 4:50AM, Oct. 15, 2008
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A strict interpretation of the constitution would allow private ownership of nuclear weapons, wouldn't it?

Also, a strict interpretation of the Constitution would not allow for the government recognized “personhood” for corporations - which gives ultra-legal powers to a collective of individuals and focuses very little criminal liability on them.

___

Also…McCain-Feingold didn't control speech, it tried to address the undue corrupting influence of campaign contributions. To equate money to speech is to say that the rich deserve a bigger voice than the poor.

Abortion isn't killing anything, as something has to be born to be killed … at least, that's the position the Bible held. The opinion that abortion is murder is fairly new and very debatable.

But that's not the problem with legislating it.

If you try to legislate it, you will grow government and ultimately fail in stopping abortions anyway. Trying to control behavior through government control requires that the action is successful. To do this, we'd need to investigate every miscarriage as a potential homicide (more cops). You would also need some way to tell when a woman gets pregnant (forced monthly testing) so that they can't “abort on the sly”. You would need to criminally punish the women who have the abortions (teens in jail), as well as the doctors you can prove performed them.

In a society that is fair and just, a woman who does not wish to have the child but is now forced to by the government should at the very least have all of her medical bills - during the pregnancy and in regards to any pregnancy-related injury after - paid for by the government. That means we need more money, which means higher taxes.

That is the ultimate result of criminalizing abortion.

If it is not, it is just a law on the books that will be arbitrarily and unfairly enforced, if it is enforced at all. The vision of eliminating abortions will not be any more successful than the war on drugs has been.
last edited on July 14, 2011 3:10PM
dueeast at 7:40AM, Oct. 15, 2008
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This won't surprise you, Ronson, but I disagree with you. B)

McCain-Feingold had 2 effects: to limit campaign contributions, which I have no problem with – and to limit or eliminate political commercials from outside organizations during a certain period of time before an election. That goes for any group of any political persuasion, and that is limitation of free speech. I see it as a direct reaction to groups like the Swiftboats and MoveOn.org and it may mean well but limiting free speech is always bad. I'll have to look up the bill's exact wording to be more specific. It's been a few years since I first studied up on it.

The interpretation you have on life is very different from mine. It's no secret that I believe life begins at conception. While it is true that the mass of cells has not fully developed into a recognizable human within the first hours, days and weeks, but it does not take long at all for it to develop a beating heart, a circulation system with blood and nerves, etc. And from there, over the coming months towards delivery, it developes all that it needs to exist as a baby outside the mother's womb. The entire process would not be possible if it was dead; the fact that it continues to develop shows that it is living, even if it has not been delivered yet. In addition, fetuses as young as 5 to 6 months into pregnancy have successfully been delivered and though they require some medical intervention, eventually most can be nurtured to full health. The whole process of pregnancy is a creation of a new human being, a new life.

The current laws are based on a strict scientific interpretation of the medical facts but many people argue that they do not take into account the whole process –and purpose – of pregnancy, which has existed since humankind's beginnings. As I said previously, I may not agree with the current law but I will obey it and I will not work to overturn it.

As far as the existence of new life creating new taxes, that is, quite frankly a LAME reason to support abortion. I almost laughed when I read that… New life means new responsibility for the parent and the society. Most people know they're going to have to pay taxes once they reach adulthood (or go to the store and buy things). Tough, we all deal with it. That's life.

You seem to be arguing about what if abortion were criminalized if the pro life supporters succeeded in overturning Roe v. Wade – and yet, people can only speculate on this because that is not the reality of the situation. It would be difficult to pursue legally since both sides would need to line up expert witnesses, scores of documents and considerable financial resources. I'm sure such people and resources exist but until that trial occurs, it remains speculation. The reality may be different than either you or I imagine.


Ronson
A strict interpretation of the constitution would allow private ownership of nuclear weapons, wouldn't it?

Also, a strict interpretation of the Constitution would not allow for the government recognized “personhood” for corporations - which gives ultra-legal powers to a collective of individuals and focuses very little criminal liability on them.

___

Also…McCain-Feingold didn't control speech, it tried to address the undue corrupting influence of campaign contributions. To equate money to speech is to say that the rich deserve a bigger voice than the poor.

Abortion isn't killing anything, as something has to be born to be killed … at least, that's the position the Bible held. The opinion that abortion is murder is fairly new and very debatable.

But that's not the problem with legislating it.

If you try to legislate it, you will grow government and ultimately fail in stopping abortions anyway. Trying to control behavior through government control requires that the action is successful. To do this, we'd need to investigate every miscarriage as a potential homicide (more cops). You would also need some way to tell when a woman gets pregnant (forced monthly testing) so that they can't “abort on the sly”. You would need to criminally punish the women who have the abortions (teens in jail), as well as the doctors you can prove performed them.

In a society that is fair and just, a woman who does not wish to have the child but is now forced to by the government should at the very least have all of her medical bills - during the pregnancy and in regards to any pregnancy-related injury after - paid for by the government. That means we need more money, which means higher taxes.

That is the ultimate result of criminalizing abortion.

If it is not, it is just a law on the books that will be arbitrarily and unfairly enforced, if it is enforced at all. The vision of eliminating abortions will not be any more successful than the war on drugs has been.
last edited on July 14, 2011 12:18PM
radarig at 8:18AM, Oct. 15, 2008
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Ronson
Abortion isn't killing anything, as something has to be born to be killed … at least, that's the position the Bible held. The opinion that abortion is murder is fairly new and very debatable.

I think you're illustrating why this is such a divisive issue; all of your arguments hold that its a violation of the mother's rights, whereas those who are pro-life hold that it is a violation of the child's rights. You can't really reconcile one with the other, and most of the time this sort of thing devolves into singing to the choir.

But I do take issue with the idea that you have to be born to be killed; the logical extension of that argument is that you could terminate an unborn child that was ten minutes from a normal delivery, and ten minutes later such an act would be murder. This doesn't make any sense to me, as there is no physiological difference between the child in those two circumstances.

And as to the Bible, I'm not sure what you're referring to. If there is a passage that explicitly says that, all I can say is that there's many that allude to the unborn as beings with souls. But the Bible contradicts itself in many areas, as I'm sure you know. :P
last edited on July 14, 2011 2:58PM
Ronson at 9:00PM, Oct. 15, 2008
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My only point is that even the issue of what constitutes an individual life is easily debateable. While some seek to show how a fetus almost to term is capable of living outside of the woman without actually being born, others seek to show that the union of sperm and egg, coupled with implantation is still only a small mass of cells that lacks any real independent life to speak of.

And the life and health of the mother is often disregarded in favor of the unborn mass of cells by anti-choice people.

But my main point is that it's an unenforceable law without fairly stringent invasions of our personal lives…or at least, the lives and bodies of women.

And we do have data on what criminalized abortions would look like, thanks to:El Salvador. Sure, it'll work a bit differently here in the USA, but it's likely that that difference would be a complete lack of real enforcement of the policy.
last edited on July 14, 2011 3:10PM
Loud_G at 9:55AM, Oct. 16, 2008
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Ronson
And the life and health of the mother is often disregarded in favor of the unborn mass of cells by anti-choice people.


This is brought up a LOT in the debates by ‘pro-choice’ people. From what I've seen VERY very VERY few pro-life adherents would truly require that the babies life supercede the value of the mother's life. I've seen a couple, true. But they were mostly quite irate, and probably nuts. Yet, this statement gets bandied about by the pro-choice movement as if it is a main tenant of the other side. It is not. Most thinking people realise that in such instances the parents with their doctors have to decide which is best.

But in most cases I've seen the pro-choice group don't care one bit for the child's life as long as the woman's ‘rights’ are in tact.

The line that needs to be drawn is not which life is more important. The line that needs to be draw is whether what amounts to inconvenience is more important than the life of a child. All too many abortions are used as contraceptive. That is the purpose of contraceptive. You prevent life from starting, but with abortion you are ending a life that has already begun.


That's what I don't get, when the ‘right to life’ of one thing supercedes the ‘right to life’ of another thing, then the reason had better be REALLY good.

I agree, legistlating this is a dificult thing. That is why education is so important. Not just relying on a law, but helping people to understand the realities of the situation.
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last edited on July 14, 2011 1:46PM
radarig at 5:13PM, Oct. 16, 2008
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Loud_G
The line that needs to be drawn is not which life is more important. The line that needs to be draw is whether what amounts to inconvenience is more important than the life of a child. All too many abortions are used as contraceptive. That is the purpose of contraceptive. You prevent life from starting, but with abortion you are ending a life that has already begun.

As was said, straying into discussion of the right/wrong of abortion rather than the authority to legislate on it, though Ronson was doing it as well. I think we can all agree that we're not going to come to a moral agreement between the two sides on the principles here.

Ronson:

To the actual point (whether or not legislating on abortion is an invasion of privacy), I still say that the government has the right to legislate how we live. We aren't allowed to kill another person, and if the government determines that a fetus beyond the age of X months is a person, then it has the right to criminalize those abortions. You may not like it, and you obviously don't, but it is in no way an invasion of your privacy.

The exception, in my opinion and as you suggested, was the health of the mother. It raises the issue of how we judge whose life is more important if, as in the scenario, we legislate/judicate the unborn at a certain age to have equal rights under the law.
last edited on July 14, 2011 2:58PM
Ronson at 8:51PM, Oct. 16, 2008
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Loud_G
The line that needs to be drawn is not which life is more important. The line that needs to be draw is whether what amounts to inconvenience is more important than the life of a child. All too many abortions are used as contraceptive. That is the purpose of contraceptive. You prevent life from starting, but with abortion you are ending a life that has already begun.

Really? We're really going to argue that “All too many” abortions are used as contraceptives. Back that up with proof, or drop that opinion. Besides which, why do we need to legislate your personal determination of where life begins?

Someone
As was said, straying into discussion of the right/wrong of abortion rather than the authority to legislate on it, though Ronson was doing it as well. I think we can all agree that we're not going to come to a moral agreement between the two sides on the principles here.

I will not let irrational postulates stand without challenge. After I deal with them, I'll try to track back to the point that these “social conservative,” refuse to face.

Someone
To the actual point (whether or not legislating on abortion is an invasion of privacy), I still say that the government has the right to legislate how we live. We aren't allowed to kill another person, and if the government determines that a fetus beyond the age of X months is a person, then it has the right to criminalize those abortions.

fine, but finish the thought, please. to what extent should this criminalization process go? More on this later.

Someone
You may not like it, and you obviously don't, but it is in no way an invasion of your privacy.

Because you say so, I must accept that it isn't an invasion of privacy to use the full force of government (guns & prison) to force women to carry and deliver a fetus for nine months? Sorry if I am a bit reluctant.

Someone
The exception, in my opinion and as you suggested, was the health of the mother. It raises the issue of how we judge whose life is more important if, as in the scenario, we legislate/judicate the unborn at a certain age to have equal rights under the law.

okay, let's deal with this. If you want to start describing the definitions of “health of The mother” and “equal rights under The law” for The fetus.

First, “health” of The mother:

She's healthy, why not keep her traumatized longer?

Second,“equal rights under The law” for The fetus:

What this means is that the pregnant woman must be tried for murder (along with the doctor). It also means police investigations must be started for every reported miscarriage.

Do all of you “social conservatives” feel that sending a teenaged girl to jail for life is a fair punishment? If not, should the penalties for all murders be reduced? Or could it be that the punishment isn't “equal” even in your own mind?

And now that you've put laws in place that will require All reported miscarriages to be investigated, there will now be a lot of unreported ones. How shall the police prevent abortions on the sly? Mandatory testing of all fertile women once per month?

I suspect that you “social conservatives” are often of the opinion that bigger government is not necessarily better or efficient? Have you put forward your method of criminalizing abortion? What is it?


If you insist on arguing for this legislation, explain to me how it will work. Answer the last 3 paragraphs specifically, please.
last edited on July 14, 2011 3:10PM
Loud_G at 6:41AM, Oct. 17, 2008
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Ronson
Really? We're really going to argue that “All too many” abortions are used as contraceptives. Back that up with proof, or drop that opinion. Besides which, why do we need to legislate your personal determination of where life begins?

I'm sorry, so I need permission for my opinion? Rats, I guess I just go ahead and believe everything you believe.


Seriously, wow.

I may not have data in the form of numbers, but I have experience in the form or real life people and in debates as well where that very reason is brought up by the women.

Stretchmarks weighed more in their decision than the life of a child.


You are right on one part, though. Legislating this would be very difficult. But whether it should be legislated and whether it should be done are different. I'm not positive legislation would stop it. I think Education might be the best long term answer. The problem is not that there are abortions for life endangering situations. The problem is the cavalier attitude and the fact that no one wants to take responsibility for their actions. This goes for more issues than just abortion, but anyway.

I have known people who thought that pregnancy was “too huge of a consequence for having a little fun.” (That statement alone is what is wrong with this country as a whole….) We need to teach people Responsibility, and let them govern themselves. But if they refuse to govern themselves responsibly invariably there will be people that want to restrict their ‘freedom’, in order to protect an innocent party.

That's what laws are mostly for, to protect the innocent. Not to keep people from having fun. I would prefer people learned responsibility rather than enact a law. Because as you've said, a law will be messy and hard to enforce. (Though your ideas of enforcement are so extreme as to be ridiculous) Underground abortion facilities, however, would probably crop up. This should be avoided. But I also think something should be done to lower the numbers.


Edit:

So, really, it isn't so much that social concervatives want to butt into people's lives. They are just trying to protect what they perceive as an innocent victim. I think that is a very noble thing.

As for teenagers in prison, that has never been on my list of how legislation would work. I'm not exactly sure what legislation WOULD work, but THAT is defintely not it. For me it wouldn't be about criminalization, but about regulation. Not make it illegal, just put checks into the system.
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last edited on July 14, 2011 1:46PM
lothar at 7:49AM, Oct. 17, 2008
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Loud_G
For me it wouldn't be about criminalization, but about regulation. Not make it illegal, just put checks into the system.

aren't there already checks ? it's not like you can just walk into walmart and get a third trimester abortion in under an hour .

if you don't want to criminalize it, than your position seems to be pretty far left of the majority of the moral conservatives out there. i'm pretty sure they want Roe v wade overturned and abortion outlawed .

last edited on July 14, 2011 1:45PM
radarig at 11:39AM, Oct. 17, 2008
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Ronson
fine, but finish the thought, please. to what extent should this criminalization process go? More on this later.

Not to be pedantic or anything, but it goes as far as the government decides it will go. I'm just saying that it is within the rights of government to define the point at which a person is a person. I make no judgment on where this line should be drawn.

I feel as though you framed this debate in the context of morality forcing an invasion of privacy, but aren't you using your morality as an impetus as well?

Ronson
Because you say so, I must accept that it isn't an invasion of privacy to use the full force of government (guns & prison) to force women to carry and deliver a fetus for nine months? Sorry if I am a bit reluctant.

Straw man for the win! Look, you clearly disagree with calling the unborn alive and from that perspective I understand why you feel the government would be intruding. All I am saying is that, should the government say “past six months it is a human being” in a law that would not conflict with R v. W, at that point it would legally be the government's responsibility to protect the child.

In that scenario it is not unprecedented intrusion; if the government feels you are raising your child in a detrimental way it can seize them, it can force you to educate them in a certain way, it can legislate requirements for their medical care. By simply redefining what constitutes a child, though you or I may disagree, it is not radically changing the way in which it has always mandated aspects of our lives.

You and I are free to disagree with these changes, but we don't govern the laws, the laws govern us.

Ronson
What this means is that the pregnant woman must be tried for murder (along with the doctor). It also means police investigations must be started for every reported miscarriage.

If the miscarriage appears to be suspicious, then yes! If you take an injured woman to the hospital and the doctor determines through examination that you beat her, you would be investigated because there is probable cause that you broke the law. Would that be an invasion of privacy?

Now, if the government specifically passes a law saying “all miscarriages must be investigated in this manner…” that would clearly be an invasion of privacy.

Ronson
And now that you've put laws in place that will require All reported miscarriages to be investigated, there will now be a lot of unreported ones. How shall the police prevent abortions on the sly? Mandatory testing of all fertile women once per month?

No, that would be an invasion of privacy. That would be the equivalent of getting a search warrant for every house in a city because statistically some of those houses will contain drugs. As in your previous scenario, legislating that would be overturned instantly (presuming Johnny Mac doesn't make it thorough somehow and appoint nothing but Alitos to every open court slot).

Look, for the record I'm a social and economic liberal. Maybe not as liberal as the most on every issue, but I believe it is very important to be able to understand the other side of the argument and find what we can at least agree on. Just reading what you're writing suggests to me that you have no ability to understand why pro-lifers think the way that they do, beyond calling them, what, “privacy butt-inskys or the morality police.”

Gosh, I'm just so amazed that none of them agree with you!
last edited on July 14, 2011 2:58PM
Ronson at 5:55PM, Oct. 17, 2008
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Loud_G
I'm sorry, so I need permission for my opinion? Rats, I guess I just go ahead and believe everything you believe.

I apologize. I thought your statement was about legislating it. Your opinion is fine, though the fact that you can't back it up takes a bit of credibility out of it.


I may not have data in the form of numbers, but I have experience in the form or real life people and in debates as well where that very reason is brought up by the women.

Stretchmarks weighed more in their decision than the life of a child.

And these people would make good parents … why? Seriously, if you're going to tell me that some people get abortions for stupid reasons, I say we're better off as a society that they didn't have the children.


You are right on one part, though. Legislating this would be very difficult. But whether it should be legislated and whether it should be done are different…

This is the crux of the matter, the rest is just your opinions for not wanting people to be able to choose abortions.

The problem is that “social conservatives” DO want to legislate it as a criminal offense, but then do not explain the way such legislation would work. I don't care if a religion or an individual wants to tell people why they don't think abortions are a good thing, but when we start talking about legislation, I want some rational thinking.

So, really, it isn't so much that social concervatives want to butt into people's lives. They are just trying to protect what they perceive as an innocent victim. I think that is a very noble thing.

You're wrong. If “social conservatives” really wanted to reduce the amount of abortions, they would strengthen the social safety net for those at the bottom, they'd fight for better public education and they'd push for safe sex education and encourage teenagers who are going to have sex to use condoms.

Instead, all these “social conservatives” want to do is make abortions illegal and force women to carry their fetuses to term.

If we're going to have to grow the government bigger with the goal of reducing abortions, why don't these “social conservatives” push for the things that actually have a proven track record, instead of concentrating on punishing those after the fact?

Far from noble, they are petty.

As for teenagers in prison, that has never been on my list of how legislation would work. I'm not exactly sure what legislation WOULD work, but THAT is defintely not it. For me it wouldn't be about criminalization, but about regulation. Not make it illegal, just put checks into the system.

There are checks in the system. No third trimester abortions. Check.

It seems to me that you seek to make abortion a right only if it suits your personal sense of morality. Imagine applying that thinking to everything via government legislation. People who eat more than you think they should would be forbidden to buy food. Rich people would be forbidden to buy lottery tickets because they have enough money.

When you apply laws, it has to be applied fairly to everyone.
last edited on July 14, 2011 3:10PM
Ronson at 6:12PM, Oct. 17, 2008
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radarig
Just reading what you're writing suggests to me that you have no ability to understand why pro-lifers think the way that they do, beyond calling them, what, “privacy butt-inskys or the morality police.”

Gosh, I'm just so amazed that none of them agree with you!


Actually, it seems to me that those claiming the domain of “socially conservative” are clearly falling on the side of “Morality Police”.

Those that want abortion criminalized are perfectly fine with risking the health of the woman (all pregnancies risk permanent health risks) at gunpoint. All have their own “personal views” on why it's wrong, and none have given any thought to the repercussions of involving the government in this. They don't see it as a privacy issue, because they don't feel a woman's body is hers to do with as she wishes.

I do understand the idea that some people consider a mass of cells - and later, a fetus - to be a life that is more important than the woman who has to carry it for 9 months. I really do. They think it's murder … sort of.

I say “sort of” because they don't want the punishment to be the same as murder. Like children, they just want it to be not allowed and refuse to understand how a legal system MUST work if this were to happen.

They just want clinics that offer abortions to stop offering them. They just want women who seek abortions to do it illegally so these social conservatives don't have to notice that it ever happens, or to ever be empathetic with the reasons it happens.

In short, when a “social conservative” talks against abortion, they want it back in the closet, just like the “social conservatives” who protest homosexual rights.

None of the alleged “social conservatives” have suggested a legal system for punishing the woman who aborts her fetus. None have owned up to the fact that it will grow our government and require more taxes to pay for it. None of them really think about the issue to it's logical conclusion (so far as this thread goes, prove me wrong if you can)

Prove me wrong, social conservatives. Support arresting the teenager and sending them to jail for the same length as premeditated murder of a born human. Support a new branch of our legal system for investigating all reported miscarriages. Otherwise, express your views and discourage abortions through advertising, through your churches and organizations and in the way you bring up your children … but stop pretending you want legislation and not a figleaf over the realities of life you don't want to know about.

…I'm done. Feel free to lock this thread unless there are any real discussions following about the legislative end of their desires.
last edited on July 14, 2011 3:10PM
radarig at 6:55PM, Oct. 17, 2008
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Ronson
Blah Blah Blah

Okay. It's clear to me that you don't want to have a logical discussion about this, you merely want to go on and on with your perspective. For the sake of pointing out why you can't win any minds with this argument, let's point out the logical fallacies in this argument.

Point 1:
Ronson
None of the alleged “social conservatives” have suggested a legal system for punishing the woman who aborts her fetus.
You have not established that such a system would be necessary beyond what is already in place. As I said in my previous post, the theoretical banning of certain abortions would largely be covered by our current criminal law if the fetus is granted certain human rights.

Point 2:
Ronson
None have owned up to the fact that it will grow our government and require more taxes to pay for it.
You have not established that our government will inevitably grow larger to deal with this issue. If it falls into current criminal law there's no reason to think such a thing would happen; cases would likely be handled by the court. Are you suggesting the government would by necessity of banning abortion require a new branch of law enforcement? If so, what is your rationale?

I will accept that tax money will be lost by a spike in court costs by the state. This is inevitable in making anything illegal on any scale.

Point 3:
Ronson
Support arresting the teenager and sending them to jail for the same length as premeditated murder of a born human.
You're assuming a lot here. It's a bit of a slippery slope to suggest, as you have, that any restriction of abortion will lead to this scenario, and regardless of that you have not established that it would inevitably be punished the same way we do with premeditated murder. Can you please establish your rationale for feeling this would be the case?

Point 4:
Ronson
Support a new branch of our legal system for investigating all reported miscarriages.
Please see previous objection, or read the previous post that basically said the same thing. I'm not even sure why I'm even bothering, but whatever.

Ronson
…I'm done. Feel free to lock this thread unless there are any real discussions following about the legislative end of their desires.
Again, I find it hilarious/disturbing that you just went off on a rant about why you are pro-choice, yet if anyone wants to retort in kind it's totally not what you're looking for in your “debate thread.” If you want to have a debate, that's great. If you want to sit around with people just like you and defame and mock people who disagree with your views, that's something else entirely.
last edited on July 14, 2011 2:58PM

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