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They Hate Us Because of Our Freedom

Discussion in 'Political Zone' started by Eric_Boyer, Apr 29, 2004.

  1. gbrittain

    gbrittain Well-Known Member

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    Ben, I appreciate your reasonable response.

    Now back to what I wrote, I will break it down into segments.

    1. Our government is far from perfect.

    I dont think you had a problem with that.

    2. On the whole goverment does what is best for the majority and not an individual.

    I suppose that is up for debate, but that is the way I feel wether it is a deomocrat or republican in charge of the country.

    3. As long as imperfect people run the goverment there will be an imperfect goverment.

    Notice, I never said we should not strive to do better. I simply acknowledge that governmen is ran by an imperfect people and society and it will never be perfect no matter who runs the government. Even if it was perfect, half of society would probably disagree anyway. You can make some of the people happy some of the time, but you can not make all the people happy all the time.

    4. As for me I will take our goverment, our country, and our way of living over any other.

    That is a fact for me. Again, I realize we are not perfect and we have made mistakes, but if you disagree with this statement please tell me what government, country and way of living that actually exists in todays present world you would prefer?
  2. Ben_n_austin111

    Ben_n_austin111 Benched

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    You sir, are dead wrong. I am a religious person to an extent. I believe that there is a God. I also think God has a sense of humor. Really. I have no problem with prayers in a public setting and believe it or not, I participate in them. I am a changed man because of God and I have no problem with the phrase "Under God". So, you're term "obsessed" is used loosely here and irresponsibly. I have zero hostilities towards God. No "getting caught up in religion and losing sight of my freedoms" here, buddy.

    I'll tell you what issues I think the government should "butt out" of...

    Gay Marriage: Leave those little fruitcakes alone. They're not bothering anybody. I think for some it's not even about religion here. It's that it hits to close to home and it scares them. It's called homophobia, but Mr. Bush wants to ban gay couple from legally marrying. That's just wrong. That is the classic case of seperation of church and state. Bush is making religion the law. I have a hard time believing even he really believes that gay people shouldn't marry. IMO, it's a political issue that he will try to run on because he holds no water on any other issues other than the "war" and he knows most gay people won't vote for him anyways.

    Dick Cheney's daughter/campaign manager is gay.

    Abortion: It's a horrible thing to do. I agree. But there are circumstances that need to be looked at. Rape, incest, a 14 year old girl. The simple fact is, people are going to chose to do it, wether it be here or i"n an ally with a coat hanger" or in Mexico etc. If someone wants to have an abortion bad enough they will. You can't tell one person that they can choose and the other person they can't. Again, seperation of church and state.

    Bookbanning: We all see this. Material that won't be published because it's obscene.

    You know what?

    Don't buy the book!

    The FCC bans: *** is going on here? It's the government telling you that you what to watch. They are making the choice for you, instead of letting you make it yourself. It's a damn shame. A DAMN SHAME what's happened to Howard Stern. I know it doesn't fall in line with the morals of religion, but for cryin' out loud. GET OVER IT! Why do you worry so much about what someone else is doing in their house or in their car? It's not like Howard is coming to your house, knocking on your door, setting up a television in your yard and saying "hey, Danny White you have to watch this"... Don't watch it and don't worry about what your neighbor is watching. If you're that concerned with it, you've got problems with yourself.

    I hope you get my point now.

    I take all liberties seriously. I am not a greedy, money hungry person. I grew up with it. It doesn't excite me like it does some people. I am perfectly happy being middle class. That's what most of us are anyways.

    BTW, you listen to Rush Limbaugh a lot don't you?

    I listen to him also, and it's very easy to see how paranoid and drugged up that guy still is. It's laughable.

    I remember his take on criminals..."lock them up and throw away the key"..."menace to society" blah blah blah...

    Who's sweatin' bullets now?

    I say make an example out of Rush. Oxicontin is a serious problem and so is doctor shopping. The Republican spokesperson is a felon.

    He won't even be able to vote and he's telling you how to and who to vote for.

    Blindly.
  3. Ben_n_austin111

    Ben_n_austin111 Benched

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    I call it taking something out of context.

    The guy has changed his mind, but if you ever listen to the circumstances to what caused him to change his mind, you'll see where he is coming from.

    His support for the war in Iraq was conditional, in that, he didn't want to take the burden upon the U.S. by itself to remove Sadaam.

    When the UN showed it's lack of support is when he showed his as well. I would have changed my mind too. That was a bad move IMO. Look what's happening now. Everyone is pulling out and we're stuck there with no international support.

    Again, not a well though out move on Bush's part and I mean "thought out" as in it doesn't make sense logically. Don't get me wrong here, I know he thought about it a lot for a long time, but he didn't think about it logically rather, emotionally.

    The "flip flop" attacks from Bush are his political stance to portray that he is a man with "firm ideas" and he sticks by them, regardless.

    I'd rather have the guy that makes a choice base on circumstances (UN support) than emotion, but that's just me.

    And this is just one example of how things get taken out of context and are labeled "waffling" or "flip flopping".

    It's like taking a quote from Rush Limbaugh and saying. Rush said, "George Bush is a lying scumbag and isn't among the intellectually elite, he's a war happy Cowboy and a crazy, radical conservative" and then leaveing out the part where Rush says, "this is what the left would have you believe".

    It's taken out of context. The right wingers are so good at that. We liberals need to practice how to speak to the right. If we speak to loosley, you take it out of context and spin it.
  4. Eric_Boyer

    Eric_Boyer Well-Known Member

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    If it can be proved that my loud music causes you harm then it does. The burden of proof, as is always the case, is on the victim to prove they suffered actual harm. You haven't presented anything that isn't workable in a libertarian society.
  5. BrAinPaiNt

    BrAinPaiNt Brotherhood of the Beard Staff Member

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    But chances are when that is proven...by a court of law...that is set up by some form of the government...then the whole circular arguement would start again...because you did not get to have your own right to do as you wish because another trampled on that right that you believe you should have.

    Once again that utopian society is not going to work.

    Name one civilized country in the world that does not have some form of government that in some way infringes on what you consider to be your right to do what you want as long as you feel it does not hurt anyone else?

    If you do find one, I would suggest it is a rarity...and the reason for that rarity....because we know that type of utopia can not last.
  6. Eric_Boyer

    Eric_Boyer Well-Known Member

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    Who said anything about no government? I'm not an anarchist here. I recognize a role for government and policing and resolving disputes are a big part of it's role.
  7. Danny White

    Danny White Winter is Coming

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    If that's the case, I take your word for it and respect you for it. But I don't think it was loose or irresponsible to classify it as an "obsession" with Separation of Church and State. Many of your examples of liberty and freedom centered around social issues, while the original post by Eric dealt almost exclusively with government regulations. And few of your examples displayed the willingness you show above to tolerate "Bible thumpers."

    But you know, looking back, I was wrong to say you were only obsessed with religious intolerance. You're also clearly obsessed with Bush. :D

    You seem like a good guy, though, so I won't just lump you in with every other raving "Moveon" left-winger out there. I always respect someone who has convictions. I prefer that 100% over a fence-sitter who doesn't know what the hell they believe in.

    While we're casting broad generalizations, though, I have to tell you you've got me all wrong as well.

    I can very honestly say that I probably haven't heard a word from Rush Limbaugh in the past 7-8 years. I listened to him occasionally back when he was in his heyday, but I don't find him particularly entertaining and I think his analysis is too simplistic (same with O'reilly, but at least he's entertaining). It's great for reaching the masses, but when it comes to political analysis I'm looking for something a bit more in-depth. I hope my analysis doesn't come across as cookie-cutter as that!

    Alternatively, until just recently I listened to Howard Stern almost every single morning. He was entertaining. I can't stand listening to him now because all he can seem to talk about is *****ing about the FCC and campaigning against Bush. I don't know how this guy gets away with it given the new campaign financing laws. Stern's giving Kerry millions of dollars of in-kind contributions. But that just highlights the flaws with this unconstitutional campaign fincance reform.

    Like you, I worry that the new crackdown on "indecency" will go too far. The last thing I want is to lose some of my favorite entertainment (South Park, Sopranos, Family Guy, raunchy talk radio) because it outrages some. At the same time, when it comes to the PUBLIC airwaves, there needs to be at least some standard, agreed? No f-bombs, no Janet nipples on prime-time network broadcasts, etc.

    I'm not money-hungry either, despite how it may seem. I just think that where government does its greatest damage is through excessive regulation and in violating public property (including income). I find it much more threatening that John Kerry might try to take even more money from my paycheck, than I'm threatened by Bush allowing tax dollars to go to religious charities.

    I don't want to get too much into your specific issues like gay unions and abortion.

    Oh hell, sure I do.

    Suffice it to say that I think abortion is the taking of a human life, and I can't see how I could ever support that being legal. It's really not a religious issue for me. It's a matter of not supporting the killing of a human life. I understand that not everyone agrees with me, and that if enough people disagree with me then it WILL be legal. But that doesn't mean I have to support it.

    Gay Marriage: I feel bad for those "little fruitcakes" too, seeing as most of them have a sincere desire to just be happy together. I will point out to you, however, that George Bush isn't the one making this an issue. It is homosexuals who are making this an issue by agitiating for marriage, adoption, partner employment benefits, etc. You can view this as a heroic and noble stance on their part, or you can be offended by it. But it's the truth. Bush isn't trying to make it illegal because he doesn't have to. Gay marriage, for the most part, is ALREADY illegal and has been for quite some time. Bush, along with many politicians both Republican and Democrat, are simply arguing for the status quo. Some want even more, that being having the status quo codified in the Constitution (a mistake in my opinion). But blaming Bush for this is not exactly honest. The law is the same under Bush as it was under Clinton, and Reagan, and Carter. And I guarantee you they would have taken the same stance as Bush had the issue arisen under their watch. I'm not sure what her opinion is now, but I know for a fact that Hillary Clinton has spoken out forcefully against gay marriage in the past.

    Anyway, this has been fun, but I'm heading off for the night.

    I'm new here, and I know you've been around for awhile, but I hope we can have many more friendly exchanges like this in the Political forum in the future.

    And hey, if I'm ever in Austin or you're in DC, maybe we can have a beer.
  8. BulletBob

    BulletBob The Godfather

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    Wow, I cannot believe I missed this whole exchange! I did have to weigh in on an issue that has been touched upon, but beautifully teed up by Eric's quote above.

    The central issue of the abortion debate is whether a fetus is an "individual." However much we try to deflect the issue with arguments about the mother, rape, incest, about government pushing morals, etc., it really comes down to one very simple point.

    If the fetus is not a human being until it leaves the womb, then by all means, abortion is a simple medical procedure, and should in no way be imposed upon by law.

    If, however, it can be established that the fetus is indeed a human being, then it must follow that abortion is very much "interfering with the rights of another individual."

    This is the central issue of the debate. We can dance around it all we want. When does life begin? Until we answer that question, everything else is tangential to the argument.

    However, if it is established that life does indeed begin at conception, then even the libertarians would have to agree that the individual's right to life must be protected, even if by government.
  9. Eric_Boyer

    Eric_Boyer Well-Known Member

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    I have major problems with abortion because like you said, at some point we are dealing with an individual. Does it happen at the moment of conception or sometime later?

    I guess don't have an answer for that. I know enough to say that I feel it is wrong even at that split second of conception but I'm sure not comfortable enough with my insight to force this belief on others.
  10. BulletBob

    BulletBob The Godfather

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    A very fair assessment, sir, and I am heartened that you addressed the issue head-on, with complete honesty. Given your discomfort about your insight as to when life begins, should it at least not be debated in the public realm more vehemently (especially in the scientific community)?

    And given your reticence on the issue (as I am sure is quite widespread), should we not be more concerned that this procedure could indeed be the taking of innocent life? If there is a chance that this is the case, is it not a very grave issue, perhaps the most important of our day?

    Should we be continuing to have this procedure legally available if we are that unsure whether abortion is, in fact, murder?

    These are the hard questions, the questions that the brain has to stretch to comprehend, that challenge logic and morals, that should cause us pause.

    Instead, the issue gets clouded with symbols of hangers, talk about children growing up in less than perfect conditions, and women's rights being set back.

    The best bumper sticker I've seen on this issue is: "It's a child, not a choice." That is, in fact, where the focus should remain. Personally, I don't know for certain whether it is a child (I have pretty strong feelings, though, rooted in both religion and logic). But God help us if it is .....
  11. Eric_Boyer

    Eric_Boyer Well-Known Member

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    I suspect we are in complete agreement on this subject. The old adage goes "It is better to let 100 murderes go free then to unjustly prison an innocent one". This is what comes to mind for me when I think about this subject, If the factors being weighed are a women's temporary loss of liberty to her body verse a childs loss of life, I side with the child. It is better to let a 100 women temporarily lose liberty then to allow one child to lose it forever.

    I don't know when intelligent life begins and I doubt the scientific community would be of much help. They are just as likely to let politics muddy the water as anybody else. What makes me mad about this whole subject is the lack of compromise either side is willing to make. We can't even get late term abortions to be considered illegal when the mother is not in any danger even though 99% of us find it to be a completely unacceptable "medical" procedure.
  12. BulletBob

    BulletBob The Godfather

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    It is refreshing to be on the same side of an argument with you, Eric.

    OK, as far as the origin of life, I'll share my rather simplistic thoughts. Keep in mind, I have never taken a biology course in my life (I escaped in High School by loading up on Chemistry).

    So, FWIW, my argument is rooted entirely in logic. There is a religious argument, which is pretty straightforward, but only works for religious people (of which you do not count yourself).

    We grapple with the most logical point in time at which life begins. The two most obvious candidates are birth and conception. These are clearly marked points in time. Our current laws (most of them) are not tied to either of these points. Roe v. Wade states that abortions can be legally performed in the first tri-mester for any reason.

    Actually, this point does not really make much logical sense to me. It is an arbitrary point in time, not marked by any developmental milestones. If 3 months is the cutoff, why not 4? It was a comprimise point that was not really clearly defined.

    So, it would seem that our law defines life as beginning at 3 months gestation. What happens at that point that causes us to become human. Is it viability outside the womb? Nope. We have yet to have a baby born in the first tri-mester and survive.

    Now, this would actually be a pretty decent measuring point. If viability outside the womb were the measure, then it could be logically argued that if a baby at, say X weeks gestation is born and survives, that should be the cutoff, since life is proven viable at that point in time. For those of you keeping score at home, the present record is 19 weeks.

    That would be a pretty logical argument. An equally compelling argument would be if you accept 19 weeks, then why not 18 weeks, 6 days? Continue the argument to its logical conclusion and the break point is conception. Prior to conception, life is not viable (tangential argument about cloning notwithstanding). Logically speaking (removing all religious and political arguments), conception is the most likely candidate point at which life begins.

    I cannot stress enough how silly the whole abortion debate is without forcing someone to answer the question about when they believe life begins. If one believes that life begins at birth, then logically, this person is on solid ground when arguing the legality of abortion. Based on this assumption, we are not dealing with human life, so abortion should be no more illegal than a facelift.

    I understand this person's argument and point of view.

    Likewise, if one believes that life begins at conception, it should be easily understood why that person argues the illegality of abortion - it is the taking of human life.

    The people who I cannot stand, are those who refuse to consider when life begins. They completely punt on the issue by saying that the choice should be left up to the individual. This is a false argument.

    If life begins at conception, the rights of the baby are equal to the rights of the mother. No individual can legally decide to take another's life except in self-defense.

    If life begins at birth, just say so - it is not a baby and has no rights. Abortion is a medical procedure.

    But please, do not argue the point by saying it should be left up to the individual to choose. No other law is written that way. We prosecute individuals who "choose" to deny their children medical attention because of religious belief.

    When life begins is at the epicenter of this storm. The debate cannot be settled without addressing the central issue. It's the elephant in the middle of the room, that no one wants to talk about.

    Sorry for the rant.
  13. AtlCB

    AtlCB Active Member

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    How will things get better under Kerry? How will adding Kerry's ideas of spending more of your money for you to Bush's ideas of legislating morality really improve anything? Think about it. Is the Democratic Party's ideas that people are unable to properly spend their own money any better than the Republican Party's ideas on morality are the only acceptable way to live?
  14. BrAinPaiNt

    BrAinPaiNt Brotherhood of the Beard Staff Member

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    Political Parties and Morality are kind of contradictive aren't they? :D
  15. AtlCB

    AtlCB Active Member

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    Yes they are (including the third parties).
  16. Eric_Boyer

    Eric_Boyer Well-Known Member

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    I don't see anything logical in using viability as the measuring stick. Ending life isn't the issue, ending human life is. So the measuring stick must center around what qualities make human life more valuable and when are they developed?

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