ISF Logo   IS Forum
Forum Index Register Members List Events Mark Forums Read Help

Go Back   International Skeptics Forum » General Topics » Social Issues & Current Events
 


Welcome to the International Skeptics Forum, where we discuss skepticism, critical thinking, the paranormal and science in a friendly but lively way. You are currently viewing the forum as a guest, which means you are missing out on discussing matters that are of interest to you. Please consider registering so you can gain full use of the forum features and interact with other Members. Registration is simple, fast and free! Click here to register today.
Reply
Old 9th November 2017, 12:45 PM   #161
Rolfe
Anti-homeopathy illuminati member
 
Rolfe's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2003
Location: NT 150 511
Posts: 40,891
Originally Posted by theprestige View Post
Rolfe seems to think we worship the second amendment because it is old, or something. But the truth is that we don't worship it. We just agree with it. When we reject some gun control proposal on Second Amendment grounds, we're not rejecting it because we think the proposal is blasphemous. We're rejecting it because it would violate the law.

There's something bigoted in Rolfe's framing of the issue. I would like Rolfe to reconsider their framing, and either acknowledge the bigotry, or renounce the bigotry in favor of a more reasonable discussion of policy.

No. I think you worship the second amendment (see, constitutions can be amended) because it gives you an excuse to continue the love-affair with guns.

If a law is a bad law, leading to bad consequences, it can be changed. There should be no law so sacrosanct that this cannot happen. So, same-sex relationships are no longer illegal. Smoking in an indoor public place is now illegal, and so on.

But somehow all suggestions about altering gun control laws are resisted by appeal to the magic words of the second amendment. Can't do it, got to allow any dangerous freak to have a gun and shoot a bunch of kids because second amendment.

Now, no we have to do it this way because the second amendment is the law and we can't change the law. The argument becomes entirely circular. Of course it can be changed. If the will was there, it would be changed. A provision laid down by some dudes hundreds of years ago should not stop people who are alive today from organising their affairs in the way that seems best to them.

The will isn't there, and the second amendment is the convenient excuse.
__________________
"The way we vote will depend, ultimately, on whether we are persuaded to hope or to fear." - Aonghas MacNeacail, June 2012.

Last edited by Rolfe; 9th November 2017 at 01:11 PM. Reason: Fixed typo. "Not" should have been "now".
Rolfe is offline   Quote this post in a PM   Nominate this post for this month's language award Copy a direct link to this post Reply With Quote Back to Top
Old 9th November 2017, 12:49 PM   #162
3point14
Pi
 
3point14's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2005
Posts: 13,233
Originally Posted by Rolfe View Post
No. I think you worship the second amendment (see, constitutions can be amended) because it gives you an excuse to continue the love-affair with guns.

If a law is a bad law, leading to bad consequences, it can be changed. There should be no law so sacrosanct that this cannot happen. So, same-sex relationships are no longer illegal. Smoking in an indoor public place is not illegal, and so on.

But somehow all suggestions about altering gun control laws are resisted by appeal to the magic words of the second amendment. Can't do it, got to allow any dangerous freak to have a gun and shoot a bunch of kids because second amendment.

Now, no we have to do it this way because the second amendment is the law and we can't change the law. The argument becomes entirely circular. Of course it can be changed. If the will was there, it would be changed. A provision laid down by some dudes hundreds of years ago should not stop people who are alive today from organising their affairs in the way that seems best to them.

The will isn't there, and the second amendment is the convenient excuse.

I have noticed that Americans have a very, very different relationship with their constitution than any other nation I'm aware of.
__________________
Some seem to think the UK leaving the EU is like Robbie leaving Take That.
In reality it's more like Pete leaving The Beatles.

We are lions, not tigers.
Turns out I don't know a lot about tigers.

Last edited by 3point14; 9th November 2017 at 12:56 PM.
3point14 is offline   Quote this post in a PM   Nominate this post for this month's language award Copy a direct link to this post Reply With Quote Back to Top
Old 9th November 2017, 12:55 PM   #163
MikeG
Now. Do it now.
 
MikeG's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2012
Location: UK
Posts: 20,341
Originally Posted by Giz View Post
Successive waves of legislation in the 20th century. Mostly after WW1 and then again after 1997..........
So yeah, gun owners have required a license in the UK for a hundred years. Licenses include random checks on the safe keeping of the weapons, and registration with the local police, mental health assessments, and so on. Who do you think might have owned weapons prior to WW1? Landed gentry and their game keepers. Gun control by cost and availability. Guns have never been a free for all here, as you would admit if you're being honest, and so your "4 times the homicide rate" thing was an irrelevant aside to the discussion (other than, of course, being at least partly as a result of the comparative access to weaponry in the two countries.)
__________________
The Conservatives want to keep wogs out and march boldly back to the 1950s when Britain still had an Empire and blacks, women, poofs and Irish knew their place. The Don That's what we've sunk to here.

Last edited by MikeG; 9th November 2017 at 01:07 PM.
MikeG is offline   Quote this post in a PM   Nominate this post for this month's language award Copy a direct link to this post Reply With Quote Back to Top
Old 9th November 2017, 12:55 PM   #164
ponderingturtle
Orthogonal Vector
 
ponderingturtle's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2006
Posts: 39,938
Originally Posted by Rolfe View Post
What Nessie said. But also, what you said yourself. Laws are regularly revisited and reinterpreted in the USA as in all other countries. Any constitution can be amended. Blind veneration of a text hundreds of years old which can't accommodate modern circumstances is religion, not sense.

And it's not the outcome I desire. I don't have a dog in this fight. But I am concerned, as a human being, when I see children gunned down as a result of a dysfunctional society, so I express an opinion.

The blind veneration of "the constitution" seems to be too ingrained though. Children will go on dying and all that will happen is more "thoughts and prayers", until the next one.
Sure but it is pretty damn hard and you could never get a replacement text written. So interpretation of what are reasonable weapons to ban vs permit falls to the court and out of the realm of the constitution because the text is a really poorly written run on sentence.
__________________
Sufficiently advanced Woo is indistinguishable from Parody
"There shall be no *poofing* in science" Paul C. Anagnostopoulos
Force ***** on reasons back" Ben Franklin
ponderingturtle is offline   Quote this post in a PM   Nominate this post for this month's language award Copy a direct link to this post Reply With Quote Back to Top
Old 9th November 2017, 01:14 PM   #165
Rolfe
Anti-homeopathy illuminati member
 
Rolfe's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2003
Location: NT 150 511
Posts: 40,891
Originally Posted by ponderingturtle View Post
Sure but it is pretty damn hard and you could never get a replacement text written. So interpretation of what are reasonable weapons to ban vs permit falls to the court and out of the realm of the constitution because the text is a really poorly written run on sentence.

I agree. It could be reinterpreted if the will was there. The will isn't there, though.

Suppose the constitution had said something that is now universally regarded as unconscionable. Say it had said that women should not be allowed to vote for example. Would we see America meekly denying its women a vote just because it was in the constitution? I'll bet we wouldn't. They'd find a way round it, because they would want to do that. It's all about the will.
__________________
"The way we vote will depend, ultimately, on whether we are persuaded to hope or to fear." - Aonghas MacNeacail, June 2012.

Last edited by Rolfe; 9th November 2017 at 01:36 PM. Reason: Spelling again.
Rolfe is offline   Quote this post in a PM   Nominate this post for this month's language award Copy a direct link to this post Reply With Quote Back to Top
Old 9th November 2017, 01:15 PM   #166
Nessie
Philosopher
 
Nessie's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2012
Posts: 9,721
Originally Posted by Giz View Post
Successive waves of legislation in the 20th century. Mostly after WW1 and then again after 1997.


To save you from future futile "gotcha" effort; I was born and lived in the UK for 30 years, I have some knowledge whereof I speak.
The Firearms Act 1968 is the prime piece of legislation, with two main amendments regarding the type of firearm allowed in 1988 and 1997. Other amendments have been minor ones regarding imitation weapons and certificates. The 1968 Act was an update of the 1937 Act.

It is an exaggeration to say there have been successive waves of legislation.
__________________
Audiophile/biker/sceptic
Nessie is offline   Quote this post in a PM   Nominate this post for this month's language award Copy a direct link to this post Reply With Quote Back to Top
Old 9th November 2017, 01:17 PM   #167
Nessie
Philosopher
 
Nessie's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2012
Posts: 9,721
Originally Posted by Giz View Post
Either bigotry, or an unhealthy inferiority complex regarding US freedoms.
Are you being serious?
__________________
Audiophile/biker/sceptic
Nessie is offline   Quote this post in a PM   Nominate this post for this month's language award Copy a direct link to this post Reply With Quote Back to Top
Old 9th November 2017, 01:24 PM   #168
Nessie
Philosopher
 
Nessie's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2012
Posts: 9,721
Originally Posted by MikeG View Post
So yeah, gun owners have required a license in the UK for a hundred years.
The Gun Licence Act of 1870 was about getting revenue, not gun control, like licensing a dog, anyone could get a licence with no checks. Gun control licensing came in 1937.

Quote:
Licenses include random checks on the safe keeping of the weapons,
Not in Scotland and I know of know legal provision for random checks elsewhere.

Quote:
and registration with the local police, mental health assessments, and so on.
There is no mental health assessment. Mental health issues have to be self declared.

Quote:
Who do you think might have owned weapons prior to WW1? Landed gentry and their game keepers. Gun control by cost and availability. Guns have never been a free for all here, as you would admit if you're being honest, and so your "4 times the homicide rate" thing was an irrelevant aside to the discussion (other than, of course, being at least partly as a result of the comparative access to weaponry in the two countries.)
Guns are more expensive here, which is demand and supply economics rather than controls.
__________________
Audiophile/biker/sceptic
Nessie is offline   Quote this post in a PM   Nominate this post for this month's language award Copy a direct link to this post Reply With Quote Back to Top
Old 9th November 2017, 01:27 PM   #169
Giz
Philosopher
 
Join Date: Jul 2002
Posts: 7,705
Originally Posted by Nessie View Post
Are you being serious?
Yes.

I notice you didn't deny it...
Giz is offline   Quote this post in a PM   Nominate this post for this month's language award Copy a direct link to this post Reply With Quote Back to Top
Old 9th November 2017, 01:29 PM   #170
BobTheCoward
Philosopher
 
Join Date: Nov 2010
Posts: 9,678
Originally Posted by Rolfe View Post
I agree. It could be reinterpreted if the will was there. The will isn't there, though.

Suppose the constitution had said something that is now universally regarded as unconscionable. Say it had said that women should not be allowed to vote for example. Would we see America meekly denying its women a vote just because it was in the constitution? I'll bet we wouldn't. They'd fins a way round it, because they would want to do that. It's all about the will.
I don't think people would. I think it would actually get amended.

That doesn't include unconscious bias. It seems everyone unconsciously shapes their constitutional interpretation around their policy preferences.... except for me.

Last edited by BobTheCoward; 9th November 2017 at 01:30 PM.
BobTheCoward is offline   Quote this post in a PM   Nominate this post for this month's language award Copy a direct link to this post Reply With Quote Back to Top
Old 9th November 2017, 01:33 PM   #171
MikeG
Now. Do it now.
 
MikeG's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2012
Location: UK
Posts: 20,341
Originally Posted by Nessie View Post
The Gun Licence Act of 1870 was about getting revenue, not gun control, like licensing a dog, anyone could get a licence with no checks. Gun control licensing came in 1937.
Permits have been required since 1903.

Quote:
Not in Scotland and I know of know legal provision for random checks elsewhere.
Well, that's what happens. Police come and check that the gun cabinet is properly secured, and that the guns and ammunition are in it. The farmers either side of me have each been checked in the last 3 years.

Quote:
There is no mental health assessment. Mental health issues have to be self declared.
That's twisting it a little. A history of mental health problems will be taken into account in deciding on whether to issue the permit. Lying on the application form to hide such issues is unlikely to end well.

Quote:
Guns are more expensive here, which is demand and supply economics rather than controls.
Which is the very point I made, but I was making it about the time before permits were bought in at the start of the 20th century, and at such a time, there were greater disparities of wealth and guns were a scarce and expensive hand-made item.
__________________
The Conservatives want to keep wogs out and march boldly back to the 1950s when Britain still had an Empire and blacks, women, poofs and Irish knew their place. The Don That's what we've sunk to here.

Last edited by MikeG; 9th November 2017 at 02:05 PM.
MikeG is offline   Quote this post in a PM   Nominate this post for this month's language award Copy a direct link to this post Reply With Quote Back to Top
Old 9th November 2017, 01:35 PM   #172
MikeG
Now. Do it now.
 
MikeG's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2012
Location: UK
Posts: 20,341
Originally Posted by Nessie View Post
Are you being serious?
Ask for a list of all the freedoms that Giz gained when moving to the US from Britain. It'll be "guns".
__________________
The Conservatives want to keep wogs out and march boldly back to the 1950s when Britain still had an Empire and blacks, women, poofs and Irish knew their place. The Don That's what we've sunk to here.
MikeG is offline   Quote this post in a PM   Nominate this post for this month's language award Copy a direct link to this post Reply With Quote Back to Top
Old 9th November 2017, 01:39 PM   #173
Rolfe
Anti-homeopathy illuminati member
 
Rolfe's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2003
Location: NT 150 511
Posts: 40,891
Originally Posted by Giz View Post
Yes.

I notice you didn't deny it...

Deny it? I am so, so happy not to be American, you probably wouldn't believe it. This is not mainly about the guns situation, though that's a part of it. It's mainly about the healthcare issue, and the racism, and the inequality.

Any country where people boast that they want to hang on to obscene amounts of money for themselves rather than help their fellow-men who are in genuine need is not a society I would want to be part of.

ETA: And to echo what Mike just said, one of the freedoms I really like having is the freedom to go about my daily business, and go absolutely anywhere I want in the countryside (so long as I don't go into someone's actual garden or cause damage) without having to worry for a single moment that I might be shot. Actually, even if I did go into someone's garden or cause damage in the countryside, I could still do that in absolute certainty that whatever happened I would not be shot. It's a good feeling.
__________________
"The way we vote will depend, ultimately, on whether we are persuaded to hope or to fear." - Aonghas MacNeacail, June 2012.

Last edited by Rolfe; 9th November 2017 at 01:43 PM.
Rolfe is offline   Quote this post in a PM   Nominate this post for this month's language award Copy a direct link to this post Reply With Quote Back to Top
Old 9th November 2017, 01:42 PM   #174
Nessie
Philosopher
 
Nessie's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2012
Posts: 9,721
Originally Posted by Giz View Post
Yes.

I notice you didn't deny it...
Please explain why being critical of the number of gun deaths and massacres is due to bigotry and an inferiority complex. Then prove your claim.
__________________
Audiophile/biker/sceptic
Nessie is offline   Quote this post in a PM   Nominate this post for this month's language award Copy a direct link to this post Reply With Quote Back to Top
Old 9th November 2017, 01:46 PM   #175
cullennz
Embarrasingly illiterate
 
cullennz's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2006
Posts: 12,439
Originally Posted by Rolfe View Post
Deny it? I am so, so happy not to be American, you probably wouldn't believe it. This is not mainly about the guns situation, though that's a part of it. It's mainly about the healthcare issue, and the racism, and the inequality.

Any country where people boast that they want to hang on to obscene amounts of money for themselves rather than help their fellow-men who are in genuine need is not a society I would want to be part of.
While at the same time going to church every sunday celebrating some dude they say spent his life doing the exact opposite
__________________
I generally oppose gun control, but I support the ban on assault weapons and I support a slightly longer waiting period to purchase a gun. With today’s Internet technology we should be able to tell within 72-hours if a potential gun owner has a record.

Source: The America We Deserve, by Donald Trump, p.102 , Jul 2, 2000
cullennz is offline   Quote this post in a PM   Nominate this post for this month's language award Copy a direct link to this post Reply With Quote Back to Top
Old 9th November 2017, 01:48 PM   #176
Nessie
Philosopher
 
Nessie's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2012
Posts: 9,721
Originally Posted by MikeG View Post
Permits have been required since 1903.
But with no accompanying checks which is what gun control is about. You just went to the Post Office and got a permit.


Quote:
Well, that's what happens. Police come and check that the gun cabinet is properly secured, and that the guns and ammunition are in it. The farmers either side of me have each been checked in the last 3 years.
It is not random, it is by arrangement when a certificate is applied for or due for renewal.

Quote:
That's twisting it a little. A history of mental health problems will be taken into account in deciding on whether to issue the permit. Lying on the application form to hide such issues is unlikely to end well.
True, I did not want people to get the impression all applicants are specifically assessed for mental health issues.

Quote:
Quote:
Guns are more expensive here, which is demand and supply economics rather than controls.
Which is the very point I made, but I was making it about the time before permits were bought in at the start of the 20th century, and at such a time, there were greater disparities of wealth and guns were a scarce and expensive hand-made item.
Yes and as guns became more common after WWI, legislation arrived to stop the numbers getting out of control.
__________________
Audiophile/biker/sceptic
Nessie is offline   Quote this post in a PM   Nominate this post for this month's language award Copy a direct link to this post Reply With Quote Back to Top
Old 9th November 2017, 01:48 PM   #177
Giz
Philosopher
 
Join Date: Jul 2002
Posts: 7,705
Originally Posted by MikeG View Post
Ask for a list of all the freedoms that Giz gained when moving to the US from Britain. It'll be "guns".
You appear to be blanking out a lot of the threads we've had about free speech and the like, in favour of stereotyped bigoted dismissal.
Giz is offline   Quote this post in a PM   Nominate this post for this month's language award Copy a direct link to this post Reply With Quote Back to Top
Old 9th November 2017, 01:52 PM   #178
Nessie
Philosopher
 
Nessie's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2012
Posts: 9,721
Originally Posted by Rolfe View Post
....
ETA: And to echo what Mike just said, one of the freedoms I really like having is the freedom to go about my daily business, and go absolutely anywhere I want in the countryside (so long as I don't go into someone's actual garden or cause damage) without having to worry for a single moment that I might be shot. Actually, even if I did go into someone's garden or cause damage in the countryside, I could still do that in absolute certainty that whatever happened I would not be shot. It's a good feeling.
I want to echo that as well, our right to life and safety is paramount and is enhanced by successful gun control.

I also suspect you could go into someone's garden and damage it without fear of being shot .
__________________
Audiophile/biker/sceptic
Nessie is offline   Quote this post in a PM   Nominate this post for this month's language award Copy a direct link to this post Reply With Quote Back to Top
Old 9th November 2017, 01:57 PM   #179
MikeG
Now. Do it now.
 
MikeG's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2012
Location: UK
Posts: 20,341
Originally Posted by Nessie View Post
But with no accompanying checks which is what gun control is about. You just went to the Post Office and got a permit.
How acceptable do you think even that would be for the US gun lobby? Now, do you take my point?

Quote:
It is not random, it is by arrangement when a certificate is applied for or due for renewal.
It is by arrangement, generally, but it isn't just at renewal, and it is allowed to be entirely random with an "intelligence led" caveat.

ETA the highlighted.
__________________
The Conservatives want to keep wogs out and march boldly back to the 1950s when Britain still had an Empire and blacks, women, poofs and Irish knew their place. The Don That's what we've sunk to here.

Last edited by MikeG; 9th November 2017 at 02:04 PM.
MikeG is offline   Quote this post in a PM   Nominate this post for this month's language award Copy a direct link to this post Reply With Quote Back to Top
Old 9th November 2017, 02:02 PM   #180
MikeG
Now. Do it now.
 
MikeG's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2012
Location: UK
Posts: 20,341
Originally Posted by Giz View Post
You appear to be blanking out a lot of the threads we've had about free speech and the like, in favour of stereotyped bigoted dismissal.
Ah......I see, freedom of speech. Of course, it's ridiculous to suggest that Europeans have freedom of expression.

I note that "bigot" is the word of the day. Perhaps you don't understand its meaning.
__________________
The Conservatives want to keep wogs out and march boldly back to the 1950s when Britain still had an Empire and blacks, women, poofs and Irish knew their place. The Don That's what we've sunk to here.
MikeG is offline   Quote this post in a PM   Nominate this post for this month's language award Copy a direct link to this post Reply With Quote Back to Top
Old 9th November 2017, 02:06 PM   #181
Nessie
Philosopher
 
Nessie's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2012
Posts: 9,721
Originally Posted by MikeG View Post
How acceptable do you think even that would be for the US gun lobby? Now, do you take my point?
The US gun lobby have accepted checks for CCW permits, purchases from dealers and places such as NY State have similar licensing systems to the UK. The issue is many purchases and states do not ask for checks. It is piecemeal and to work it needs to be universal.

Quote:

It is by arrangement, generally, but it isn't just at renewal, and it is allowed to be entirely random.
A news article from 2014 (I checked and there are other similar articles from the same month) does not mean there is universal, regular random checks. I cannot find any specific examples of random checks actually taking place.
__________________
Audiophile/biker/sceptic
Nessie is offline   Quote this post in a PM   Nominate this post for this month's language award Copy a direct link to this post Reply With Quote Back to Top
Old 9th November 2017, 02:16 PM   #182
Nessie
Philosopher
 
Nessie's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2012
Posts: 9,721
Originally Posted by MikeG View Post
....

It is by arrangement, generally, but it isn't just at renewal, and it is allowed to be entirely random with an "intelligence led" caveat.

ETA the highlighted.
Re the edit, it has always been the case that if information was received that a licence holder was suspect no longer suitable (a referee contacts the police to say a holder is now an alcoholic) they would get a visit.
__________________
Audiophile/biker/sceptic
Nessie is offline   Quote this post in a PM   Nominate this post for this month's language award Copy a direct link to this post Reply With Quote Back to Top
Old 9th November 2017, 02:18 PM   #183
Rolfe
Anti-homeopathy illuminati member
 
Rolfe's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2003
Location: NT 150 511
Posts: 40,891
You know, most people have a fairly strong attachment to the country they were born or brought up in. It's quite common for them to feel extremely happy that they were born or brought up there, and that they wouldn't have wanted to be born or brought up anywhere else. For them, their own country is indeed "the best country in the world".

Perceptive people realise, of course, that this is subjective. They know that a Frenchman is likely to feel that France is the best country in the world, and an Australian is likely to feel that Austraila is the best country in the world, and so on. But then there are some who don't really understand that. They see only their own perspective, that they live in the best country in the world, so of course other people must see it the same way and be envious and feel inferior because they don't belong to that country.

There's something in the American mindset that seems to foster this point of view. Maybe it's the school indoctrination of quasi-religious reverence for the flag and the constitution, and constantly being told about all these "freedoms" they have because they're American. Maybe it's simply insularity, being in such a big country that they don't get out much and don't meet many people who are happy contented citizens of other countries.

Whatever the reason, there do seem to be many American people who can't understand that when someone from another country criticises the American way of doing things, this is simply criticism. It's not jealousy, it's not racism, it's not bigotry, and it's not a frustrated desire to be American and so bad-mouthing what you can't have in a sour-grapes sort of way. It's just looking in from outside and thinking, hey, you guys are really making a hash of this.

Get over it.
__________________
"The way we vote will depend, ultimately, on whether we are persuaded to hope or to fear." - Aonghas MacNeacail, June 2012.
Rolfe is offline   Quote this post in a PM   Nominate this post for this month's language award Copy a direct link to this post Reply With Quote Back to Top
Old 9th November 2017, 02:28 PM   #184
Nessie
Philosopher
 
Nessie's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2012
Posts: 9,721
Originally Posted by Rolfe View Post
....

There's something in the American mindset that seems to foster this point of view. .....
Its called American Exceptionalism.
__________________
Audiophile/biker/sceptic
Nessie is offline   Quote this post in a PM   Nominate this post for this month's language award Copy a direct link to this post Reply With Quote Back to Top
Old 9th November 2017, 02:46 PM   #185
This is The End
 
This is The End's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2007
Posts: 9,503
Originally Posted by Nessie View Post
Its called American Exceptionalism.

Well it is objectively and by almost any metric the greatest country in the history of the world.

The jealousy absolutely drips from your posts no matter how hard you try to cover it up. And it has for years now.
__________________
________________________
This is The End is offline   Quote this post in a PM   Nominate this post for this month's language award Copy a direct link to this post Reply With Quote Back to Top
Old 9th November 2017, 02:55 PM   #186
Rolfe
Anti-homeopathy illuminati member
 
Rolfe's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2003
Location: NT 150 511
Posts: 40,891
Wouldn't want to be you, as they say.
__________________
"The way we vote will depend, ultimately, on whether we are persuaded to hope or to fear." - Aonghas MacNeacail, June 2012.
Rolfe is offline   Quote this post in a PM   Nominate this post for this month's language award Copy a direct link to this post Reply With Quote Back to Top
Old 9th November 2017, 02:58 PM   #187
mumblethrax
Species traitor
 
mumblethrax's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2004
Posts: 1,979
The reverence for the constitution and the founding fathers is really strange. It has more in common with Mao's little red book than it does with the liberal revolution that ushered it in. Not only is this attitude internationally aberrant, it's historically unusual--American's didn't always feel this way. Notably, the people who wrote the damn thing didn't. The US has a long history of ignoring its own laws and its own constitution--most obviously, the manner in which the strictures of the first constitution, the Articles of Confederation, were ignored in writing the second and current constitution. Within short order, Adams ignored the constitution in supporting the Alien and Sedition Acts, and Jefferson ignored his own belief that the Louisiana purchase unconstitutionally exceeded his own authority.

The reality is that we should have had a truth and reconciliation commission, followed by a new constitution, 50, 100, 150 years ago. The current lay attitude towards the thing, which I think is largely a holdover from the cold war, prevents that from happening. So we probably do need a period of constitutional heresy. In other words, yes, I think we should ignore the constitution, which should be regarded in 2017 as an undemocratic relic of a less enlightened time.
mumblethrax is offline   Quote this post in a PM   Nominate this post for this month's language award Copy a direct link to this post Reply With Quote Back to Top
Old 9th November 2017, 03:02 PM   #188
This is The End
 
This is The End's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2007
Posts: 9,503
Originally Posted by Rolfe View Post
Wouldn't want to be you, as they say.

Odd how your countries actions contradict that for the past 70 years.
__________________
________________________
This is The End is offline   Quote this post in a PM   Nominate this post for this month's language award Copy a direct link to this post Reply With Quote Back to Top
Old 9th November 2017, 03:07 PM   #189
Rolfe
Anti-homeopathy illuminati member
 
Rolfe's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2003
Location: NT 150 511
Posts: 40,891
Oh, the penchant of the Westminster government for sucking up to the USA and trying to emulate the worst aspects of its dysfunctional society is one of the reasons an independent Scotland can't come fast enough for me.

Funny thing, they're trying to privatise healthcare and foist chlorinated chicken on us, but fostering a climate where everyone wants or feels they have to carry a gun isn't part of the mad Westminster rush to adopt all things Merikan. They may have lost their minds, but they're not quite that far gone.
__________________
"The way we vote will depend, ultimately, on whether we are persuaded to hope or to fear." - Aonghas MacNeacail, June 2012.
Rolfe is offline   Quote this post in a PM   Nominate this post for this month's language award Copy a direct link to this post Reply With Quote Back to Top
Old 9th November 2017, 03:11 PM   #190
Scootch
Critical Thinker
 
Join Date: Jul 2008
Posts: 446
The Constitution isn't all that bad. It has a system of checks and balances which I find is a good thing. Also it does separate church and state so that there is no state religion which is also really, really good. It also includes instructions for amending the constitution so if there are outdated laws they can be removed. Rolfe gave a hypothetical of giving women the right to vote but a real example would be the 3/5ths clause that was removed by the 14, 15, and 16 amendment. I am sorry Rolfe that you don't want to come here, America has some really nice things and, FYI, if you change your mind (I hope you do) you will always be welcome (as long as you are a white male-jk).
Scootch is offline   Quote this post in a PM   Nominate this post for this month's language award Copy a direct link to this post Reply With Quote Back to Top
Old 9th November 2017, 03:13 PM   #191
mumblethrax
Species traitor
 
mumblethrax's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2004
Posts: 1,979
Originally Posted by Scootch View Post
The Constitution isn't all that bad.
Yes, it is. It's the source of our current political dysfunction.

The US has a genetic disorder, and we refuse to accept the diagnosis.
mumblethrax is offline   Quote this post in a PM   Nominate this post for this month's language award Copy a direct link to this post Reply With Quote Back to Top
Old 9th November 2017, 03:17 PM   #192
Rolfe
Anti-homeopathy illuminati member
 
Rolfe's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2003
Location: NT 150 511
Posts: 40,891
I'm not a white male.

I've been to America three times and each time I was made very welcome and had a great holiday. I hope to come again after you've got rid of Trump and elected someone sane. But I most certainly don't wish I'd been born or brought up American, and I most certainly wouldn't want to live in America or become American.

It's nothing personal. I wouldn't want to live in or become a citizen of about 99% of the counries on the planet. My relationship with Scotland is status:complicated at the moment, but I'm Scottish. As far as America goes, the appalling healthcare situation, the poor holiday entitlement, the racism, the inequality and the undercurrent of worry that someone might shoot at me are powerful disincentives to anything more than a temporary visit.

I'd like to see the Grand Canyon though.
__________________
"The way we vote will depend, ultimately, on whether we are persuaded to hope or to fear." - Aonghas MacNeacail, June 2012.
Rolfe is offline   Quote this post in a PM   Nominate this post for this month's language award Copy a direct link to this post Reply With Quote Back to Top
Old 9th November 2017, 03:19 PM   #193
xjx388
Philosopher
 
Join Date: Nov 2010
Posts: 5,379
Originally Posted by Rolfe View Post
<snip>But I am concerned, as a human being, when I see children gunned down as a result of a dysfunctional society, so I express an opinion.

The blind veneration of "the constitution" seems to be too ingrained though. Children will go on dying and all that will happen is more "thoughts and prayers", until the next one.
In your neck of the woods, do children "go on dying?" Have you enacted legislation to seriously curtail the use of cars, swimming pools, beaches, poisons, plastic bags, ropes, power tools, etc? Is your society dysfunctional because kids are run down in the roads or allowed to drown in your pools and beaches?

As a human being, I am greatly saddened when kids are hurt or killed through preventible means, as I'm sure you are. But I also realize that if we are going to allow people to have the freedom to drive cars, own swimming pools, go to the beach, have guns, etc, that there is going to be a certain level of injury and death that is unavoidable no matter what laws we pass short of seriously curtailing freedoms.

The reason that we like our Constitution so much is that it makes it very difficult for our government to take away our freedoms. Indeed, even if there was no direct mention of the right to bear arms in the second amendment, it would still be very difficult to curtail that right because of the Ninth Amendment: "The enumeration in the Constitution of certain rights shall not be construed to deny or disparage others retained by the people." In other words, just because a certain right is not specifically named in the Constitution does not mean that the people don't have that right. The Constitution is all about restricting the power of the Federal Government. That's really the defining principle of America.

The European nations didn't start from that so they don't value it in the same way that Americans do. It's that simple.
__________________
Hello.
xjx388 is offline   Quote this post in a PM   Nominate this post for this month's language award Copy a direct link to this post Reply With Quote Back to Top
Old 9th November 2017, 03:21 PM   #194
Scootch
Critical Thinker
 
Join Date: Jul 2008
Posts: 446
Is the only issue with the Constitution the 2nd amendment? If so, then get a Constitutional Convention up and we can introduce an amendment to invalidate it (see the 18th and 21st amendments for an example of that). For sure it will be an extremely difficult challenge. It will be an uphill battle all the way and you may not win but we are talking about children's life's for goodness sake.
Scootch is offline   Quote this post in a PM   Nominate this post for this month's language award Copy a direct link to this post Reply With Quote Back to Top
Old 9th November 2017, 03:28 PM   #195
MikeG
Now. Do it now.
 
MikeG's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2012
Location: UK
Posts: 20,341
Originally Posted by xjx388 View Post
.....The reason that we like our Constitution so much is that it makes it very difficult for our government to take away our freedoms.........
That's just paranoia, and an unhealthy relationship with the democratic process. There are plenty of places on the planet with just as many freedoms, and where governments aren't seen as the enemy (because, you know............they're not).
__________________
The Conservatives want to keep wogs out and march boldly back to the 1950s when Britain still had an Empire and blacks, women, poofs and Irish knew their place. The Don That's what we've sunk to here.
MikeG is offline   Quote this post in a PM   Nominate this post for this month's language award Copy a direct link to this post Reply With Quote Back to Top
Old 9th November 2017, 03:31 PM   #196
xjx388
Philosopher
 
Join Date: Nov 2010
Posts: 5,379
Originally Posted by Rolfe View Post
I'm not a white male.

I've been to America three times and each time I was made very welcome and had a great holiday. I hope to come again after you've got rid of Trump and elected someone sane. But I most certainly don't wish I'd been born or brought up American, and I most certainly wouldn't want to live in America or become American.
That's fair enough. I wouldn't want to live in Europe or be a citizen there either. I love Texas and the US and that's as it should be.

Quote:
It's nothing personal. I wouldn't want to live in or become a citizen of about 99% of the counries on the planet. My relationship with Scotland is status:complicated at the moment, but I'm Scottish. As far as America goes, the appalling healthcare situation,
It's only appalling form your removed POV. Living here, people get healthcare, even the poorest of us. I've been on the bottom rung of society and the upper rungs; I've never faced a lack of healthcare and neither has anyone I personally know. We find a way to make what we have work for the most part.
Quote:
the poor holiday entitlement,
This is just a difference in viewpoint. You can negotiate a quite good "holiday entitlement" (I genuinely love the way people from the UK refer to things!) without it being mandated by the government. My wife and I have six weeks paid time off per year. I can see why people would like that though, so if it works for you, great. I certainly wouldn't want that here because then the tendency would be to meet the government mandate and nothing more.
Quote:
the racism,
If you are saying Scotland has no racism, then I don't believe you. If I (a brown person of Anglo/Mexican/Indian descent) visited Scotland and went to the local bar for a beer, would I not encounter any racism at all? I'll have to test that someday.
Quote:
the inequality and the undercurrent of worry that someone might shoot at me are powerful disincentives to anything more than a temporary visit.
I have lived in the US for 48 years. Never has anyone shot at me. I don't even know anyone who has been shot at in my extended circle of acquaintances. This despite the fact that most people I know own guns and I live in South Texas where there is some gang activity from the Mexican drug cartels. This would be like me saying, "I don't want to visit the UK because I might encounter a bomb at a concert or get run over on a bridge." The headlines are not the country.
__________________
Hello.
xjx388 is offline   Quote this post in a PM   Nominate this post for this month's language award Copy a direct link to this post Reply With Quote Back to Top
Old 9th November 2017, 03:45 PM   #197
Scootch
Critical Thinker
 
Join Date: Jul 2008
Posts: 446
Originally Posted by MikeG View Post
That's just paranoia, and an unhealthy relationship with the democratic process. There are plenty of places on the planet with just as many freedoms, and where governments aren't seen as the enemy (because, you know............they're not).
Yes the government can be the enemy sometimes. Jim Crow laws were laws enacted by government and I wouldn't call them a friend. The Dred Scott case is another great example of governments being an enemy of the people (or at least a bad friend). And these horrible laws enacted by a horrible government was able to be successfully overturned because Americans fought the injustices and used the Constitution as the basis of their argument.
And in today's times I think we can all agree the government is a little less friendly now with Trump.
Scootch is offline   Quote this post in a PM   Nominate this post for this month's language award Copy a direct link to this post Reply With Quote Back to Top
Old 9th November 2017, 03:51 PM   #198
ahhell
Muse
 
Join Date: Feb 2017
Posts: 615
Originally Posted by xjx388 View Post
The reason that we like our Constitution so much is that it makes it very difficult for our government to take away our freedoms. Indeed, even if there was no direct mention of the right to bear arms in the second amendment, it would still be very difficult to curtail that right because of the Ninth Amendment: "The enumeration in the Constitution of certain rights shall not be construed to deny or disparage others retained by the people." In other words, just because a certain right is not specifically named in the Constitution does not mean that the people don't have that right. The Constitution is all about restricting the power of the Federal Government. That's really the defining principle of America.
Wow, I laughed out loud at mention of the 9th amendment. Nobody gives a **** about that, especially not the Supreme Court.
ahhell is offline   Quote this post in a PM   Nominate this post for this month's language award Copy a direct link to this post Reply With Quote Back to Top
Old 9th November 2017, 04:04 PM   #199
mumblethrax
Species traitor
 
mumblethrax's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2004
Posts: 1,979
Originally Posted by Scootch View Post
Jim Crow laws were laws enacted by government and I wouldn't call them a friend. The Dred Scott case is another great example of governments being an enemy of the people (or at least a bad friend). And these horrible laws enacted by a horrible government was able to be successfully overturned because Americans fought the injustices and used the Constitution as the basis of their argument.
Those are both examples where the constitution failed to prevent abuse. Jim Crow laws (which were largely constitution) weren't primarily undone by the courts, but by the Civil Rights Act--ordinary democratic adjudication (parts of which have been overturned by constitutional challenge, leading directly to the current spate of voter suppression).

So yes, the government is sometimes the enemy (especially for the black minority, for whom the US has been a police state rather than a democracy for much of its history), and our current constitution is exceedingly bad at doing anything about that. Instead it protects the 'minority rights' of the people who filibustered civil rights legislation.

The fingerprints of slavery and white supremacy are all over the constitution, and in its extant institutions, another reason why it should go.
mumblethrax is offline   Quote this post in a PM   Nominate this post for this month's language award Copy a direct link to this post Reply With Quote Back to Top
Old 9th November 2017, 04:06 PM   #200
xjx388
Philosopher
 
Join Date: Nov 2010
Posts: 5,379
Originally Posted by ahhell View Post
Wow, I laughed out loud at mention of the 9th amendment. Nobody gives a **** about that, especially not the Supreme Court.
What makes you think that?
__________________
Hello.
xjx388 is offline   Quote this post in a PM   Nominate this post for this month's language award Copy a direct link to this post Reply With Quote Back to Top
Reply

International Skeptics Forum » General Topics » Social Issues & Current Events

Bookmarks

Thread Tools

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Forum Jump


All times are GMT -7. The time now is 10:52 AM.
Powered by vBulletin. Copyright ©2000 - 2017, Jelsoft Enterprises Ltd.
© 2014, TribeTech AB. All Rights Reserved.
This forum began as part of the James Randi Education Foundation (JREF). However, the forum now exists as
an independent entity with no affiliation with or endorsement by the JREF, including the section in reference to "JREF" topics.

Disclaimer: Messages posted in the Forum are solely the opinion of their authors.