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bkjazfan 11-16-2008 04:24 PM

Re: Please Make It Stop!
 
In California we have had a political quagmire that was exacerbated by the religious establishment. There was a proposition put on the ballot that passed that outlawed same sex marriages. It was prop. 8. What it did was reversed a recent state supreme court ruling that OK'd homosexual marriages.

First there were members of the Mormon Chrrch that contrubuted large sums of money to pass this piece of measure. This was compounded by majorities in the African American and Hispanic communities voting for the measure.

The other night I was listening to talk radio and they were discussing this matter. A black male listener called in and complained about the majority of his South Los Angeles community being anti gay. He said he used to go to a rather large church where the minister frequently lambasted homosexuals. He said that he left the church in short order but wondered why the 50 other gay people that he knew of would stay around and lap up this kind of talk. I am wondering that, too.

John

cognitive madisonian 11-16-2008 04:50 PM

Re: Please Make It Stop!
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by Wonderment (Post 97652)
First off, I would just reiterate my view that Bush and Cheney are war criminals who should be held accountable for their crimes.

'War criminal' is a ludicrous charge. Honestly, it is. Tojo was a war criminal. Slobadan Melosivic was a war criminal. If you put George Bush in their company, then I struggle to take you seriously.

Quote:

The "forgive, forget and move on" attitude is really bad for democracy. Impeachment efforts failed because Congress abdicated its responsibility, and since Congress will continue to do so, the Truth and Reconciliation Commissions idea is an excellent one. Let it all come out, and let Americans and the world learn how we started an illegal war and ended up torturing and holding people in prison without charges or trial for years.
You do know that Obama will likely keep the Bush interrogation rules, and may not close Guantanamo, right?

We didn't start an illegal war. Getting a few intelligence items wrong, thanks in large part to deceit by the dictator who you overthrew, does not equate illegality. And this whole torturing thing, please. We waterboarded a few people. You can count the number of people on one hand. Compare that to US actions in every previous war. Same thing with indefinite imprisonment. This is nothing new. This is done in war. Barack Obama will do it too. Bill Clinton started many of these programs.


Quote:

The purpose of those lists is to identify businesses to boycott. Individuals who don't own businesses should not be on there, but businesses should.

I certainly have a right to know if the restaurant in my neighborhood gives $$ to homophobic causes. There is no expectation of privacy in these donations, as they are a matter of public record.

Boycotts and divestments are historically important in civil rights struggles.
So nevermind that you're trying to ruin the lives of people for disagreeing with you politically, but you also want to ruin those who work for those you disagree with.

That, my friend, is McCarthyism at best.

cognitive madisonian 11-16-2008 04:53 PM

Re: Please Make It Stop!
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by bkjazfan (Post 97653)
In California we have had a political quagmire that was exacerbated by the religious establishment. There was a proposition put on the ballot that passed that outlawed same sex marriages. It was prop. 8. What it did was reversed a recent state supreme court ruling that OK'd homosexual marriages.

First there were members of the Mormon Chrrch that contrubuted large sums of money to pass this piece of measure. This was compounded by majorities in the African American and Hispanic communities voting for the measure.

The other night I was listening to talk radio and they were discussing this matter. A black male listener called in and complained about the majority of his South Los Angeles community being anti gay. He said he used to go to a rather large church where the minister frequently lambasted homosexuals. He said that he left the church in short order but wondered why the 50 other gay people that he knew of would stay around and lap up this kind of talk. I am wondering that, too.

John

You're describing the death of the Obama coalition ;)

Ocean 11-16-2008 05:28 PM

Re: Please Make It Stop!
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by bkjazfan (Post 97653)
In California we have had a political quagmire that was exacerbated by the religious establishment. There was a proposition put on the ballot that passed that outlawed same sex marriages. It was prop. 8. What it did was reversed a recent state supreme court ruling that OK'd homosexual marriages.

First there were members of the Mormon Chrrch that contrubuted large sums of money to pass this piece of measure. This was compounded by majorities in the African American and Hispanic communities voting for the measure.

You are giving an example of how religious and cultural beliefs have an effect on social issues. I think this country has to start thinking about 'boundaries'. In this case, I refer to boundaries as the alleged right that some people think they have to decide on someone else's life. Same sex marriage doesn't directly affect Mormons, other religions, or straight people from any ethnic background. People in these groups may think they are affected because they 'disapprove' or 'dislike', for their own reasons, G/L marriage. But same sex marriage does directly affect the G/L community. And that's where the big difference is found. Gay/Lesbian people are not trying to dictate what the others do. They are only asking to be granted the same rights the others have. If you apply the idea of boundary, it is the anti- same sex marriage advocates that 'trespass' and violate the G/L community's right to marriage. Again, I also want to make sure we are talking about 'contracts' between consenting adults.

The same principles of non-interference that apply to religion and secularism would apply to this issue. Frankly, considering the great progress that the G/L community has made in the past couple of decades, I'm not sure how to interpret proposition 8 success. It may have been more a result of the religious group pushing this agenda at a particularly 'vulnerable' moment regarding the presidential election. I think there is also discussion about the validity of this kind of decision through a proposition.

Quote:

The other night I was listening to talk radio and they were discussing this matter. A black male listener called in and complained about the majority of his South Los Angeles community being anti gay. He said he used to go to a rather large church where the minister frequently lambasted homosexuals. He said that he left the church in short order but wondered why the 50 other gay people that he knew of would stay around and lap up this kind of talk. I am wondering that, too.

John
These are individual decisions. For the person who left the church, the anti-gay message was overriding. For the other 50 who stayed, perhaps there were other valuable messages or reasons in spite of the anti-gay message. When we interact with others, there are always areas of agreement and disagreement. We all tolerate disagreement and in many instances it is essential to a more balanced opinion. Of course, when the disagreement is too deep or involves hatred, sooner or later it's going to erode the relationship. Denial can survive for some time. Unfortunately, it isn't uncommon that it will go on for much longer than desirable. And still, eventually it will crumble.

Wonderment 11-16-2008 05:46 PM

Re: Please Make It Stop!
 
Do you think boycotting lunch counters that wouldn't serve blacks in the South or boycotting business conducted with Apartheid South Africa was "McCarthyism"?

Never mind. You probably do.

Ocean 11-16-2008 05:51 PM

Re: Please Make It Stop!
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by cognitive madisonian (Post 97655)
'War criminal' is a ludicrous charge. Honestly, it is. Tojo was a war criminal. Slobadan Melosivic was a war criminal. If you put George Bush in their company, then I struggle to take you seriously.

We didn't start an illegal war. Getting a few intelligence items wrong, thanks in large part to deceit by the dictator who you overthrew, does not equate illegality. And this whole torturing thing, please. We waterboarded a few people. You can count the number of people on one hand. Compare that to US actions in every previous war. Same thing with indefinite imprisonment. This is nothing new. This is done in war. Barack Obama will do it too. Bill Clinton started many of these programs.

I'm not going to address the specific arguments you present, but rather comment on kind of argument you are making. You take something that is quite unequivocally wrong (torture, human rights violations, an unnecessary war) and you compare that to something that, perhaps, was even worse. And you call that a valid argument. From my perspective, this kind of argument is good as 'consolation', so that we don't feel so bad about something that is clearly wrong. What some of us propose is to move forward with a higher standard. We want to compare what we think is wrong with a better possibility, a higher principle. A 'little' torture isn't good enough. No torture is much better. If we don't keep upgrading our standards we can't make progress. We are not expecting perfection, but we should strive for more adherence to existing principles, revise older principles that may not be appropriate any longer, and establish higher standards.

Quote:

So nevermind that you're trying to ruin the lives of people for disagreeing with you politically, but you also want to ruin those who work for those you disagree with.

That, my friend, is McCarthyism at best.
I think you need to define "ruin the lives", and perhaps give some concrete examples. As described here, your argument doesn't make much sense.

Quote:

You do know that Obama will likely keep the Bush interrogation rules, and may not close Guantanamo, right?
How do you know?

cognitive madisonian 11-16-2008 06:31 PM

Re: Please Make It Stop!
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by Wonderment (Post 97659)
Do you think boycotting lunch counters that wouldn't serve blacks in the South or boycotting business conducted with Apartheid South Africa was "McCarthyism"?

Never mind. You probably do.

A fundamental difference is in the nature of the three instances. If you can not see the difference in gays not being able to marry and blacks being subject to Apartheid, then I'd recommend the book Kaffir Boy so you get a greater handle on life in Apartheid South Africa.

Is there ever a time when a boycott is acceptable? Yes. In extreme circumstances. That's it.

cognitive madisonian 11-16-2008 06:45 PM

Re: Please Make It Stop!
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by Ocean (Post 97660)
I'm not going to address the specific arguments you present, but rather comment on kind of argument you are making. You take something that is quite unequivocally wrong (torture, human rights violations, an unnecessary war)

Well, I don't accept these at face values. Torture is wrong, but I fully accept it in ticking time bomb situations. Would rather a nuclear weapon go off in Baltimore than waterboard a terrorist? I certainly hope not.

And in terms of unnecessary war, again, we removed a heinous dictator. You mean to tell me you wouldn't support an effort to remove al Bashir in Sudan? Or Obiang in Eq. Guinea?

Was our operation against Milosivic necessary? Not for our strategic interests. But it was moral. We stopped ethnic cleansing. That makes it right.

And in Iraq, we stopped a terrible dictator and his two psychotic sons from continuing their reign of terror. That is moral.

Quote:

and you compare that to something that, perhaps, was even worse. And you call that a valid argument. From my perspective, this kind of argument is good as 'consolation', so that we don't feel so bad about something that is clearly wrong. What some of us propose is to move forward with a higher standard. We want to compare what we think is wrong with a better possibility, a higher principle. A 'little' torture isn't good enough. No torture is much better. If we don't keep upgrading our standards we can't make progress. We are not expecting perfection, but we should strive for more adherence to existing principles, revise older principles that may not be appropriate any longer, and establish higher standards.
Well, that's wonderful for hypothetical worlds in which we don't have to deal with war. But war is a reality, and every society makes sacrifices in times of war.


Quote:

I think you need to define "ruin the lives", and perhaps give some concrete examples. As described here, your argument doesn't make much sense.
Well, what's the purpose of boycotts and protests? To drive business away. So what happens when you drive business away? The bottom line is hurt. Manager Joe Smith lays off waitress Gabby Jones because he needs to cut back his staff. Gabby now has to look for a new job in a rough jobs climate while trying to feed her children. And all because Joe dared to support Proposition 8.

And what happens if Joe has to close up? Then all the people who work for him must find new work.

If you want to sway people, try reasoned debate in place of thuggery. Don't call people bigots and haters when they disagree with you. Respect the other side.

Do you donate to any causes? How would you feel if a pro-life group started boycotting your business? How would you feel if they were successful and hurt your bottom line? How would your workers feel if they were laid off because of your politics?

Maybe you don't own a business, but put yourself in their shoes. You're betraying decency by supporting such a tactic.


Quote:

How do you know?
I don't know for certain, but there are some signs pointing to it.
http://www.cqpolitics.com/wmspage.cf...s-000002986514
http://althouse.blogspot.com/2008/11...led-obama.html

And we also have Obama's flip flop on FISA. I endorse the position he flipped to, so I don't mind. For those who voted for Obama, though, it creates some cognitive dissonance. Will you stand by him?

It'll be interesting to see how it goes, because there are a few different kinds of Obama supporters. One kind is the "I support Obama because he's totally cool" type who go around with the paintings and the such. They'll stand by him. Then there are the liberals and left wingers who want to end many of the Bush policies that Obama has either flipped toward supporting or is laying the ground work to do so.

If you honestly believe Bush was a war criminal for what you described, and Obama keeps any of them, is he too a war criminal?

cognitive madisonian 11-16-2008 06:48 PM

Re: Please Make It Stop!
 
I hate to play devil's advocate, because I honestly don't care all that much about the marriage issue one way or the other (but my position is one of opposition), but I think you're not weighing the consequences of your stated philosophy.

Are you prepared to end laws restricting public nudity? Public sex acts? These are 'decency' laws. Well, seeing a naked person biking down Main Street doesn't actually cause you harm, right?

I could point to other examples, too. The point is that we have plenty of laws that extend beyond the minimalistic prism set by JS Mill.

Ocean 11-16-2008 07:15 PM

Re: Please Make It Stop!
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by cognitive madisonian (Post 97663)
I hate to play devil's advocate, because I honestly don't care all that much about the marriage issue one way or the other (but my position is one of opposition), but I think you're not weighing the consequences of your stated philosophy.

Are you prepared to end laws restricting public nudity? Public sex acts? These are 'decency' laws. Well, seeing a naked person biking down Main Street doesn't actually cause you harm, right?

I could point to other examples, too. The point is that we have plenty of laws that extend beyond the minimalistic prism set by JS Mill.

The problem I see here is that you are trying to apply 'blanket' statements. If we accept this, we have to accept that. I do understand the rationale behind, but we have to be very careful in identifying not only the similarities between situations but also the differences. I don't know whether ultimately public nudity or sex will be accepted. Certainly there are other, perhaps more primitive societies that don't have a problem with that. I'm not defending or attacking this point, only trying to examine it. The reality is that I don't think that our more conservative society is anywhere near accepting those. If we are talking about a more sexually liberal society, we will agree that whatever changes there are, they will be gradual. Issues about sexuality are too emotionally charged and deeply seated in people and cultures. There are too many layers of taboos. I wouldn't try to force any of these issues, but I would encourage people to examine their own beliefs, feelings and principles related to sexuality in an honest way. People say one thing and do the other. Why? Shouldn't we be a little more serious about examining what sexuality is, has been and should be instead of feeling 'scandalized' or intimidated by possibilities? This doesn't mean everybody will end up with the same opinion. All it means is that we would be more open to the examination and discussion of these issues.

Do you think that people are 'honest' when they talk about sexuality? Are there some people that may be more honest than others? Is honesty, in this context, a problem? Always or in some specific contexts? I'm not asking you to answer any of these, but rather show you some of the questions that people should be asking themselves when addressing these issues.

cognitive madisonian 11-16-2008 07:38 PM

Re: Please Make It Stop!
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by Ocean (Post 97664)
The problem I see here is that you are trying to apply 'blanket' statements. If we accept this, we have to accept that. I do understand the rationale behind, but we have to be very careful in identifying not only the similarities between situations but also the differences. I don't know whether ultimately public nudity or sex will be accepted. Certainly there are other, perhaps more primitive societies that don't have a problem with that. I'm not defending or attacking this point, only trying to examine it. The reality is that I don't think that our more conservative society is anywhere near accepting those. If we are talking about a more sexually liberal society, we will agree that whatever changes there are, they will be gradual. Issues about sexuality are too emotionally charged and deeply seated in people and cultures. There are too many layers of taboos. I wouldn't try to force any of these issues, but I would encourage people to examine their own beliefs, feelings and principles related to sexuality in an honest way. People say one thing and do the other. Why? Shouldn't we be a little more serious about examining what sexuality is, has been and should be instead of feeling 'scandalized' or intimidated by possibilities? This doesn't mean everybody will end up with the same opinion. All it means is that we would be more open to the examination and discussion of these issues.

Do you think that people are 'honest' when they talk about sexuality? Are there some people that may be more honest than others? Is honesty, in this context, a problem? Always or in some specific contexts? I'm not asking you to answer any of these, but rather show you some of the questions that people should be asking themselves when addressing these issues.

Quote:

The problem I see here is that you are trying to apply 'blanket' statements. If we accept this, we have to accept that. I do understand the rationale behind, but we have to be very careful in identifying not only the similarities between situations but also the differences. I don't know whether ultimately public nudity or sex will be accepted. Certainly there are other, perhaps more primitive societies that don't have a problem with that. I'm not defending or attacking this point, only trying to examine it. The reality is that I don't think that our more conservative society is anywhere near accepting those. If we are talking about a more sexually liberal society, we will agree that whatever changes there are, they will be gradual. Issues about sexuality are too emotionally charged and deeply seated in people and cultures. There are too many layers of taboos. I wouldn't try to force any of these issues, but I would encourage people to examine their own beliefs, feelings and principles related to sexuality in an honest way. People say one thing and do the other. Why? Shouldn't we be a little more serious about examining what sexuality is, has been and should be instead of feeling 'scandalized' or intimidated by possibilities? This doesn't mean everybody will end up with the same opinion. All it means is that we would be more open to the examination and discussion of these issues.
Wouldn't all of that tend to support my position? If trends persist, then we'll have gay marriage within a generation. That's if trends persist, and they may not. But assume that it will--this would be a gradual change, as you speak of. Eventually a clear majority of Americans probably will support broadening the definition of marriage to include persons of the same gender.

And, if you wait until that is the case, instead of trying to shove it down people's throats, then society will be much better off for it.

Now, I'm not fond of frankness or openness or whatever you might say of sexuality. In fact, I think our society has gone too far by a mile on this. The ubiquity of erection enhancement drugs on television, the 1-click availability of adult material on the internet, and the overall increae of sexual crassness both on television and in cinema is quite harmful, imo. I'd much prefer a traditional society in which sexuality doesn't leave the bedroom.

Ocean 11-16-2008 07:53 PM

Re: Please Make It Stop!
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by cognitive madisonian (Post 97662)
Well, I don't accept these at face values. Torture is wrong, but I fully accept it in ticking time bomb situations. Would rather a nuclear weapon go off in Baltimore than waterboard a terrorist? I certainly hope not.

And in terms of unnecessary war, again, we removed a heinous dictator. You mean to tell me you wouldn't support an effort to remove al Bashir in Sudan? Or Obiang in Eq. Guinea?

Was our operation against Milosivic necessary? Not for our strategic interests. But it was moral. We stopped ethnic cleansing. That makes it right.

And in Iraq, we stopped a terrible dictator and his two psychotic sons from continuing their reign of terror. That is moral.

I said that I wouldn't address the specific issues because there are a multitude of possibilities. But I will repeat and emphasize that my argument is about holding certain principles that aim at a higher standard. The key behind my insistence in spite of some of the examples you present which seem to 'justify' one bad to avoid a bigger one, has to do with another principle that I hold which is the rejection of dogma. It is impossible to imagine beforehand all the possible scenarios in which a principle can be applied. That's why principles can't be absolute. But there has to be an established process to assess if a principle has to be modified for a new or extreme situation, and under what circumstances. We should also challenge whether there are alternative measures that are more agreeable with our principles that can achieve the same results. I will repeat, it's the process that matters. It's about principles and their application. It's about commitment to higher standards.



Quote:

Well, that's wonderful for hypothetical worlds in which we don't have to deal with war. But war is a reality, and every society makes sacrifices in times of war.
This response doesn't address my point. The fact that there is war doesn't mean that the rules of war can't or shouldn't change. We have made quite a bit of progress in the past century both in establishing an international system that has the authority to try war crimes, and in developing technology that may decrease the death toll. We should continue moving forward and not be content by compare the atrocities that still exist with worse atrocities in the past.


Quote:

If you want to sway people, try reasoned debate in place of thuggery. Don't call people bigots and haters when they disagree with you. Respect the other side.
I agree with this. Of course we are assuming here that the other side is willing to engage in dialogue. If the other side refuses to listen to your arguments or escalates in hostility and intimidation, or uses the disagreement as fuel for revenge, there may be very few options for conflict resolution. This scenario doesn't seem to apply well to the 'boycott' of a restaurant because the owner holds different ideas. In this case, the principle has to be weighed. We are talking about organized efforts by large numbers of people to effect pressure on another group of people who hold a different opinion. It's certainly arguable. But we always have to be very careful in the parallels we draw. Some situations are very different from others. What if the restaurant owner isn't just someone that has a different opinion but actually a KKK member that may kill you or your family?


Quote:

If you honestly believe Bush was a war criminal for what you described, and Obama keeps any of them, is he too a war criminal?
Here again, I'll have to say that it all depends. I would hope there would be an investigation to determine who was involved, why, and the level of responsibility. Are we Americans responsible for what Bush did? Should we say that only those who voted for him are responsible? Are we all responsible by virtue of not starting a 'coup' to get him out of power?

We can't recycle the entire political system. But I think we should investigate, determine who has been responsible of what and act based on what seems to be appropriate for each case.

DoctorMoney 11-17-2008 10:54 AM

Re: Scum Don't Deserve a Triumph!
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by Baltimoron (Post 97522)
Wooah, you almost painted me like an elitist, anti-Emanuel guy! You're so sneaky!

You read me wrong, then.

I was painting you as someone who is far too ready to get back to gossip and unimportant personnel issues. I like Emanuel (he lived across the street from me at one point) but I have a hard time believing that he merits discussion instead of rhapsodizing about the future.

Rhapsodize. It's important. The chief of staff, all things considered, really isn't.

handle 11-17-2008 02:27 PM

Re: The Age of Obama
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by Unit (Post 97532)
I'm sorry, I thought I had been clear that I was separating the individual qualities of a president from the institutional role.

I would have to argue that the Bush / Cheney reign is a glaring example of just how much the individual qualities not only set the tone of the institutional role, but play a role in every decision, and how those decisions are sold to the people here, and around the world. Hence my emphasis on the attributes of communication, and diplomatic skills.

But some of the partisan posters here will argue that many events of the last eight years were either for the greater good, or were not consequential of decisions made by Bush / Cheney, and were motivated not by personality, but by pure moral righteousness. I have a feeling they will not take the same defensive stance for the new administration.

Baltimoron 11-17-2008 04:13 PM

Re: Scum Don't Deserve a Triumph!
 
I hope you're being ironic.

Yeah, personnel! Paaassssh! Like selecting a slate of candidates to run for office...

I hate to ruin your dreaming, but the help are how the future will be actualized, help get the president elected, and actually do the work. Trying to avoid the last Mac McLarty and hiring the next Jim Baker is a test of leadership.

DoctorMoney 11-17-2008 05:09 PM

Re: Scum Don't Deserve a Triumph!
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by Baltimoron (Post 97695)
I hope you're being ironic.

Nnnnnope.

John Henry 11-17-2008 08:13 PM

Re: The Age of Obama
 
Two things:

1. JM wants wants to restrict the meaning of "acting white" to not wanting to be educated to fit in. But, in fact, its the other meaning that bothers him: idealizing western culture, while demeaning anything perceived to be black, e.g. black music, black slang, black leaders, black cities, black political agenda. In the latter sense, Obama's election will not change the phenomenon of "acting white". There will always be blacks who don't want to be black because they hate the stereotypes however fair or unfair they might be.

2. The Economic Policy Institute has a writeup of Eisenhower Foundation co-sponsored an event titled "The Work That Remains: A Forty-year Update of the Kerner Commission Report.". Its fitting because the Kerner Commission Report is about the same age as JM.

"We've in many ways gone backwards since the sixties," he said, pointing out that child poverty, income inequality, and school integration had all gotten worse since the time of the Kerner report. Dr. Algernon Austin (Economic Policy Institute) then explored the specifics of employment discrimination. His presentation began by looking at national employment rates among blacks and whites and then proceeded to examine specific sub-groups, by gender, education, and location. Austin demonstrated that although racist discrimination affects all African Americans, it does not affect them all equally. In terms of employment, less-educated black men, blacks in major cities, and black youth are all significantly worse off.


So JM's point that we need to stop substantially pursuing a black agenda for greater racial equality because our situation is not as bad as the sixties is just wrong. In some cases it is worse than the sixties. He can mention Sharpton or the chattering masses as much as he wants but that in no way counters the overwhelming data that exists that there is still alot of work to be done to combat racial inequality. Neither does his whining about blacks "whining" about it.

Curtis 11-20-2008 10:02 AM

Re: The Age of Obama
 
I love these guys! Two of the best talking heads of bloggingheads! I never fail to walk away without some additional insight into many different things.


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