View Poll Results: In general, do you agee with the quote in the context of gun regulations/bans?

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Thread: Gun Control: Liberty for Security

  1. #101
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    Re: Gun Control: Liberty for Security

    Quote Originally Posted by Zyphlin View Post
    You'd be incorrect. Natural Rights are only absolute in having them. The Rights in the Constitution, by and large, as simply natural rights that are made considered protected governmental rights by nature of the social contract this country is founded upon...namely the Constitution. Said social contract lays down a specific way the contract can be altered. To me, altering it outside of that fashion is a violation of the contract and is something that should be fought against.
    I don't buy into Natural Law at all. Really it is not so much a particular idea as it is a category of theories that all share the common faith that one particular conception of rights is inherently superior to all the others, but those conceptions of rights, and the reason they are supposedly inherently superior, have varied radically over time. Probably the most historically important school of Natural Law has been the Christian variety- the notion that God gave us certain rights. Second to that in terms of historical impact has been the idea that certain races and genders and ages of people are inherently superior to others, and that certain social norms flow from that fundamental truth. IMO the first one doesn't serve as a basis for governance in a world where people have many different religious beliefs, and the second one is obviously ridiculous now.

    The less historically significant, but the most intellectually sound, is the Hobbsian notion of Natural Law- the idea he asserts to build off of is that people will be more able to agree on negative liberties than positive ones. Eg, everybody agrees they don't want to be hit in the head with a stick, but everybody won't agree about where to build the town hall. From that proposition he constructs a series of negative rights that kind of fit together. Leviathan is good reading and a very clever and interesting idea, but its fundamental premise doesn't actually turn out to be true. In most parts of the world and most eras of history, people have agreed on at least some positive liberties and many of the negative liberties he asserts have actually been incredibly controversial.

    So, what I'm left with from his writings is just the social contract. That much does make sense to me.

    Quote Originally Posted by Zyphlin View Post
    At such times that Rights come into conflicts, one must look at whose particular action is violating the other individuals right.

    As part of the social contract the country is founded on, our rights end where another individuals begin. This is why it's perfectly fine for me to own a gun, but the moment I seek to use that gun to infringe upon another individuals rights, then I am in the wrong.
    That sounds nice on paper, but in practice it doesn't really play out that way. In practice, if you actually were to implement a system where no person can in any way, to any extent, infringe on the rights of another, that would be an incredibly oppressive system. For example, if one person stands outside of a restaurant telling everybody that comes by that the restaurant is serving rat meat, he is exercising free speech and it is impairing the property rights of the restaurant owner. Now, you can say that he is infringing the rights of the restaurant owner, and hence shouldn't be allowed to say that, but then you are radically limiting free speech and making it basically too risky to say anything negative about a business. Or, you can say that you don't count the lost profits or reputational losses as an infringement on the restaurant owner's rights, but then you're narrowing the concept of property rights to a pretty meaningless level. Many businesses are essentially only a reputation or a brand. For example, there have been mergers worth tens of billions of dollars where all one side brought to the table was a brand. To just discount that because it makes for a neater system with less conflict issues would be to radically reduce the scope of property rights in this country.

    A more robust approach, in my opinion, is to try to maximize both. Figure out exactly how to draw the line to allow as much freedom as possible to the speaker while protecting the most important property rights. This is the sort of exercise courts exist to conduct. For example, with that scenario, the balance we've worked out is that if the speaker can show that he had a good faith belief that what he was saying is true, we side with the speaker, but if he can't, then we side with the property owner. It's a compromise. It limits both of their rights, but they still both have more rights than they would have if we just arbitrarily defined limits to one of their rights like discussed above. IMO that kind of balancing and finding workable solutions is where the real work of maximizing our rights takes place.

    Quote Originally Posted by Zyphlin View Post
    Disagree entirely. While they may be more important in terms of their affect on other rights, their over all importance from a constitutional and rights perspective are equal. It would be no less or more an atrocity for the government to revoke habeas corpus as it would be to revoke the right of assembly. Once you begin to deem a particular right as being unimportant and able to be countermanded in ways other than the constitutional process, all right's protected by the constitution become unimportant and hollow as any notion of protection based on the social contract goes entirely out the window.
    If we revoked the right of habeas corpus we would have revoked the right to assembly as well. The government could just lock up people who were assembling.
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  2. #102
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    Re: Gun Control: Liberty for Security

    Quote Originally Posted by Zyphlin View Post
    I disagree entirely with you here.
    Sans a society of any kind, I can say whatever I want.
    I can defend myself however I please.
    I can live.
    I can worship whoever I wish.
    I can be around whoever I wish.

    These things are inherent things I can simply do, not granted to be by any individual or society, but simply are. They the extent that I am able to do them myself.

    Now, individuals may attempt to stop me from doing those things. They may attempt to keep me from exercising those rights. But they can not take those rights away from me permanently, short of death. If someone caught me in the wild, kept me in a cage, and bound my mouth....if I somehow escaped and was on my own, I could still live where I want, eat what I want, say what I want, all up to the capacity that I myself can make it happen, because they can't actually remove those rights from my person. They are inherent.

    The problem is that, in nature, there is no notion that one's right's end where another's begin. I have a right to protect myself and to live somewhere. Another person has a right to eat and to live as well. That person may very well want to live where I live. He's well within his natural rights to take my land, and I'm well within my natural rights to defend myself and stop him from doing that.

    As such, we enter into societies through a social contract. There's two ways this typically happens. Either we as a people CHOOSE to enter it, or an individual/group has enough power to FORCE us to enter it. Once entered it, that social contract establishes how those individual natural rights are protected/restricted and potentially works to create other, governmental rights (which, unlike natural rights, are not inherent but dependent on the social contract).

    I can say what I want, worship who I want, live where I want, eat what I want, be around who I want in nature without the support or framework of any government. Those rights are inherent naturally.
    That doesn't really add up to me. In a state of nature, if you aren't prevented from doing anything by anybody else, you can do whatever you want. By your logic, wouldn't that mean that every possible action is a "natural right"? How does that help us generate a list of rights? What does it mean for something to be a "right" if all actions are rights and being a right doesn't mean that people can't stop you from doing it?
    Total tax rates- People living in poverty: 16.2%. The median American: 27%. Working people who make over $140k/year: 31%. The top 1%: 30%. Super rich investors: around 15%. Help the democrats retake the house.

  3. #103
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    Re: Gun Control: Liberty for Security

    I have no problem with law abiding citizens owning guns we need some form of control to keep mentally ill teabaggers like jared loughner and jim holmes from getting one.
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  4. #104
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    Re: Gun Control: Liberty for Security

    Quote Originally Posted by 99percenter View Post
    I have no problem with law abiding citizens owning guns we need some form of control to keep mentally ill teabaggers like jared loughner and jim holmes from getting one.
    There have been preventive measures on gun ownership to folks with a history of commitment to psychiatric hospitals. They are toothless though, because mental health professionals and other advocacy groups (politically liberal ones, typically) have sought to destigmatize mental illness and, in so doing, have successfully petitioned against linking health records with criminal databases (which are the only databases that would allow for real tracking of people for the purposes of denying their rights to gun ownership). People apparently don't like the idea of putting mental illness in the same category as violent crimes. The nerve! So as it stands, you may be asked if you've been civilly (psychiatrically) committed and, if you're silly enough to answer yes, it might raise a red flag and prevent you from purchasing a firearm. If you lie and answer no, there's essentially no consequence, and you'll get your gun.



    Oh wait, were you just flamebaiting? In that case, sorry for wasting your time if you never actually cared to learn anything about the issue.
    Last edited by Neomalthusian; 07-24-12 at 01:56 AM.

  5. #105
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    Re: Gun Control: Liberty for Security

    Quote Originally Posted by Schutzengel View Post
    If you want to minimize gun violence, then you REQUIRE everyone to carry a gun. gun violence is highest where gun control is highest, at least in the US... vbiolent crimes went down markedly when florida passed thier concealed carry laws, and very strict gun controls havent prevented the hundreds of gun crimes in chicago this year...

    Washington DC which is practically a gun free zone was the murder capital of the US for many years, even with amazingly strict control laws.
    Why not go all the way and put a AR-15 with a 100 round clip in every home? That way if one of us goes nuts and shoots 100 people we can say it was just 1 of a million AR-15's that never hurt no one.
    .0001% is nothing to worry about. We can write that on the victims tombstones.
    Last edited by iguanaman; 07-24-12 at 02:31 AM.

  6. #106
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    Re: Gun Control: Liberty for Security

    Quote Originally Posted by iguanaman View Post
    Why not go all the way and put a AR-15 with a 100 round clip in every home? That way if one of us goes nuts and shoots 100 people we can say it was just 1 of a million AR-15's that never hurt no one.
    .0001% is nothing to worry about. We can write that on the victims tombstones.
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  7. #107
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    Re: Gun Control: Liberty for Security

    Quote Originally Posted by Zyphlin View Post
    "Those who would give up Essential Liberty to purchase a little Temporary Safety, deserve neither Liberty nor Safety."
    - Benjamin Franklin

    This is a quote that oft showed up during PATRIOT Act discussions. However, given the recent shootings and the rise of some calling for further gun regulation, I would pose the question in relation to gun control. The right to bear arms, being inherent within the Constitution, seems as if it would qualify as an "essential liberty". Is utilizing the quote or principle behind the quote of Benjamin Franklin fair and useful when talking about the issue of gun regulatoin, control, or bans? Is there a belief that there are some Constitutional Rights, like the 4th amendment, that are "more important" than others, like the 2nd, in terms of placing regulation that hinders the individuals liberty? How does this quote relate to those arguments?
    It's funny that you posted this quote because I had been thinking about this it in relation to gun control as well. Except I interpreted "purchase a little temporary safety" to mean purchasing a gun which imo provides a sense of false security for most people who own them. I think the constitution set up the government to provide for the peace, security and justice, so that citizens wouldn't have to take the laws into their own hands. So to me, buying a gun has all the makings of taking the law into your own hands and giving up the protections of essential liberties that the constitution provides. I do not believe the second amendment as it is interpreted today means what it did when it was written.
    .

  8. #108
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    Re: Gun Control: Liberty for Security

    No, I don't really agree with it. We all give up some liberty in exchange for safety. That's what governments are for. It's all just a question of how much you're willing to give up.

    Personally, my willingness to accept gun control measures that make it more difficult for the average law-abiding citizen to obtain a gun is directly proportional to how effective that measure would be in keeping guns on out the hands of people who would misuse them.
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  9. #109
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    Re: Gun Control: Liberty for Security

    Quote Originally Posted by Neomalthusian View Post
    There have been preventive measures on gun ownership to folks with a history of commitment to psychiatric hospitals. They are toothless though, because mental health professionals and other advocacy groups (politically liberal ones, typically) have sought to destigmatize mental illness and, in so doing, have successfully petitioned against linking health records with criminal databases (which are the only databases that would allow for real tracking of people for the purposes of denying their rights to gun ownership). People apparently don't like the idea of putting mental illness in the same category as violent crimes. The nerve! So as it stands, you may be asked if you've been civilly (psychiatrically) committed and, if you're silly enough to answer yes, it might raise a red flag and prevent you from purchasing a firearm. If you lie and answer no, there's essentially no consequence, and you'll get your gun.



    Oh wait, were you just flamebaiting? In that case, sorry for wasting your time if you never actually cared to learn anything about the issue.
    He has been repeating that stupidity about Loughner for months. No matter what the evidence is he refuses to accept the fact that he is lying. He's blame Dr. King's assassination and that of RObert Kennedy on the tea baggers what ever that term means

  10. #110
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    Re: Gun Control: Liberty for Security

    Quote Originally Posted by molten_dragon View Post
    No, I don't really agree with it. We all give up some liberty in exchange for safety. That's what governments are for. It's all just a question of how much you're willing to give up.

    Personally, my willingness to accept gun control measures that make it more difficult for the average law-abiding citizen to obtain a gun is directly proportional to how effective that measure would be in keeping guns on out the hands of people who would misuse them.
    given those most likely to misuse guns are totally prohibited from owning or even touching them (yes I saw a guy who picked up a pistol another mope ditched while being chased by the Po Po and then get a FIFTEEN YEAR FEDERAL PRISON SENTENCE FOR RUNNING 10 YARDS WITH THAT PISTOL AND TRYING TO THROW IT OVER A FENCE) I think the laws are far more than sufficient to punish possession by those who have already PROVEN they are not responsible.

    prior restraint is odious to a free society

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