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Who is the biggest treat to Individual Rights, Liberals or Conservatives? 

http://www.youdebate.com/DEBATES/individual_rights.HTM

(Edited by admin 10/8/2002 at 6:22 PM).
 


Posts: 31 | Posted: 11:02 AM on May 2, 2002 | IP
Day_Am_STR8

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YOUR QUESTION WAS:  Who is the biggest threat to Individual Rights, Liberals or Conservatives?

It seems to me that ANY group that wants to make more laws will have to evoke the current right of someone to enact the new laws.

Something as simple as the speed on the interstate. When they dropped the speed limit to 55 - people lost the right to go faster.

Good or Bad is NOT the issue here




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Pro 23:9 Speak not in the ears of a fool: for he will despise the wisdom of thy words.
 


Posts: 20 | Posted: 02:18 AM on August 19, 2002 | IP
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There are four basic political alignments. Seccular Right, Seccular Left, Religous right and Religous left.

Most people fit into two or more of these categories.

Seccular Right: This is the pro-buisness and libritarian right. These are the people who's main goal is to reduce the size of the government, and (more often than not) give businesses greater freedom, and force people to take personal responsibility for their choices, and by extention, their mistakes.

"Religous right" is a term we are all familiar with. The 'pro-family' movement, which wants morality (read: Christianity) ingrained in every aspect of our lives. These are the people responsible from "protecting" us from the immoral dangers of drinking, drug use, and sexually explicit material.

Seccular left are the moral relativists. They do not condone the government judging the activities of it's citizens.  People who want to legalise prostitution and drug use, gay marriage, as well as other currently illegal activities are on the seccular left.

Religous left are the moralisers of the right. They stress compassion, charity, and docility. These are the people who want to raise your taxes to fund various social programs. These are also the anti-death penalty, donate money to foreign nations and animal rights crowd, as well as the defenders of non-christian religoins. These are also the same people who want to use the government to protect the average citizen through smoking bans, seatbelts, and other well intentioned "nanny laws."

The religous and seccular left make up the Democrats, and more to the extreme, the Greens and Rainbow/Push.

The Religous and seccular right make up the republicans, and more to the extrmeme, Reform an AIP parties.

The seccular right and left make up the libritarians. These people are the least threat to our individual rights.


(Edited by Jigokusabre 8/20/2002 at 12:50 AM.)


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Posts: 30 | Posted: 11:47 PM on August 19, 2002 | IP
Xenjael

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honestly, if you ask me, i say we have no rights, no matter where we are or what we do the government moniters us... where do u think our medical records go??? our percentage of bills..., and where do you think our thoughts are claimed by???? i mean... this forum is even monitered!
 


Posts: 83 | Posted: 8:48 PM on August 30, 2002 | IP
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Since when did the constant infringing of the right to privacy (which I agree is tragic) mean that we have no rights at all? I'm sure we can agree that their rights aside from a right to privacy: right to free speech, free religion, due process, trial by jury...the list goes on and on. They still exist, even if they are not as well protected as I'd like.


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"If stupidity got us into this mess, why can't it get us out?" -Will Rodgers<br><br><br>"Neither man nor nation can prosper unless in looking at the present, thought is steadily taken for the future." -T. Roosevelt<br><br>"Might I remind you that extremism in the pursuit of liberty is no vice, and moderation in the pursuit of justice, is no virtue." -Barry Goldwater<br><br>

Respect through Excellence only
 


Posts: 789 | Posted: 7:04 PM on August 31, 2002 | IP
Xenjael

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they may still be protected, but still... at the rate they're being monitered it will soon to martial law on everything
 


Posts: 83 | Posted: 8:34 PM on September 1, 2002 | IP
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Well sure, if John Ashcroft gets his way. But we have our friendly neighborhood ACLU to combat that!


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"If stupidity got us into this mess, why can't it get us out?" -Will Rodgers<br><br><br>"Neither man nor nation can prosper unless in looking at the present, thought is steadily taken for the future." -T. Roosevelt<br><br>"Might I remind you that extremism in the pursuit of liberty is no vice, and moderation in the pursuit of justice, is no virtue." -Barry Goldwater<br><br>

Respect through Excellence only
 


Posts: 789 | Posted: 11:50 PM on September 1, 2002 | IP
Xenjael

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maybe...but remember, martial law means whatever the government says it goes...thesame for now in fact, and believe me when i say that if someone stands in thier way...they will be "removed"
 


Posts: 83 | Posted: 7:01 PM on September 2, 2002 | IP
Predatorial

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Americans have [b]never[b] had rights and anyone who says we do have rights deserve to be shot.  Why are we arguing this issue, when we know the conservatives are usurping our rights?  The individual has a right to liberty, but how much liberty can we get if conservatives breathe down our backs asking for money?  Liberals haven't helped the cause much, but at least they have helped the cause.  Our good friend George W Bush has done nothing but steal our rights.  Why should we let this go?  I mean, we can be good slaves to conservatives, or we can stand for our own rights


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We shall win over the Conservatives !
 


Posts: 4 | Posted: 12:54 PM on September 5, 2002 | IP
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Quote from Predatorial at 12:54 PM on September 5, 2002 :
Americans have [b]never[b] had rights and anyone who says we do have rights deserve to be shot.


That has to be the single most idiotic statement a person has ever said.  


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"I have no interest in making blacks equal to whites, they are of a lesser quality and this I am sure of." -Abraham Lincoln
"You don't win a war by dying for your country, you win a war by making the other person die for theirs." -General George Patton
 


Posts: 372 | Posted: 04:09 AM on September 8, 2002 | IP
Xenjael

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i have never more false information from any living preson... truely predatorial u need to do ur research more... yes we have had limited rights for a long time, but no we did at one point from 1790-1915 we did have rights, and what about the womens movement to get equal rights? they got the rights men have! but the point when our rights became limited and gradually disappear is the alcohol repeal...read more in the amendments and other stuff
 


Posts: 83 | Posted: 2:52 PM on September 8, 2002 | IP
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I think white males are.  They have enslaved blacks, showvanisted against woamn, entraped and concentration camped japanese in wwII, and germans for that matter.  What the heck is wrong with America?!!?!?!?!?


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I am Exxoss, come to save you all from your impending doom!!!!
HAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA!!!!

-Exxoss
 


Posts: 438 | Posted: 4:34 PM on September 25, 2002 | IP
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You want to know what is wrong with america?  When do you think america was right?


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"I have no interest in making blacks equal to whites, they are of a lesser quality and this I am sure of." -Abraham Lincoln
"You don't win a war by dying for your country, you win a war by making the other person die for theirs." -General George Patton
 


Posts: 372 | Posted: 6:50 PM on September 25, 2002 | IP
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america never was right.  But white males are the cause of its not-rightness.  Englishmen colonized america!


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I am Exxoss, come to save you all from your impending doom!!!!
HAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA!!!!

-Exxoss
 


Posts: 438 | Posted: 10:16 AM on September 26, 2002 | IP
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America might not be right but you have a much better opportunities in this country then you do in 95% of the countries acorss the world.  Quit yelling and take advantage.


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"I have no interest in making blacks equal to whites, they are of a lesser quality and this I am sure of." -Abraham Lincoln
"You don't win a war by dying for your country, you win a war by making the other person die for theirs." -General George Patton
 


Posts: 372 | Posted: 2:34 PM on October 8, 2002 | IP
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liberals are the greatest threat.  They want to take away the right to bear arms, destroy Christianity, take the life of unborn children, not give us the right to decide between social security and personal saving, not for us to choose which school to send our school to, tax heavily the top 50% of income earners, reverse racism with racial quotas
 


Posts: 0 | Posted: 07:31 AM on November 12, 2002 | IP
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Liberals in the United States seek to transform America a society that benefits and nurtures individual liberty.  In making my argument I seek to first counter the previous argument on a point by point basis and then conclude with my general argument.

Liberals certainly do not seek to take away the right to bear arms: the right to bear arms is a constitutional fast.  However, they seek to check the right to bear arms in such a way that it does not affect others.  John Stuart Mill, history’s greatest supporter of individual rights said that humans should be allowed great amounts in individual liberty.  However, even Mill said that liberty had its limits.  He said that, “It is far otherwise if he has infringed the rules necessary for the protection of his fellow creatures, individually or collectively.  The evil consequences of his acts do not fall on himself, but on others; and society, as the protector of all its members, must retaliate on him…”  For Mill, unlimited gun rights would cause harm to others when it can potentially harm others.  Someone being allowed to keep a powerful automatic weapon in their home and use in their backyard certainly has the great potential to hurt others.  Clearly, individual liberty by its very definition can be restrained so that it does not infringe on the liberty of others.  Because doing so is necessary and not unnecessary curtailing of these rights.  Unrestrained use of guns taken out of its constitutional context will hurt others and destroy this sense of individualism.  On the contrary, liberals attempt to preserve the individual rights of all members of society while helping those who seek to use the 2nd amendment and those who can potentially be harmed by it.

Liberals do not seek to destroy Christianity.  This argument is so false that there is no point even trying to counter it.

Liberals allow the right to choose.  The words “right to choose” implies that individuals are given their on rights to choose what one wishes to do with one’s own body.  This is individual liberty at its very core, as telling a woman that she does not have the right to choose abortion destroys every sanctity of individual liberty.  Furthermore, an unborn child is exactly that: unborn.  Aborting a fetus that is not yet aware of the world is simply not murder, and others are not harmed.  Aborting a fetus is destroying something that is not yet conscious, like eating a chicken’s egg before any fetus has yet to take form.  However, the mother, in cases of rape, incest, or medical problems has a great amount of risk to harm if abortion is not an option.  Simply put, the right to choose is by its very nature a form of individual rights.

Social security is a program that has been created for that very purpose: social security.  To change the program into something different destroys this original purpose and meaning.  Individual rights is not the capability to spend the government’s money at will – it’s the right to spend one’s own money at will.  Taxes paid to the government in the form of social security taxes is no longer one’s money.

Parents are given the right to send their children to a plethora of schools: public, magnet, focus, core education, or even private schools.  Paying for the private education of their children is their own prerogative.

Taxing the wealthy does not destroy individual rights for these people.  The benefits that the wealthy receive from society are greater than those who are poor.  The rich gain more from fire protection for their expensive homes, police protection for their expensive cars and belongings, and bankruptcy protection for their businesses.  In exchange for these greater benefits, the wealthy pay through greater taxes.  This does not hamper individual rights, it is only fair.

Affirmative action also does not hamper individual rights.  To use an analogy from Jesse Jackson, Blacks in America today are forced to run 11 yards on the football field for every 8 that the White man runs because White people were given those 3 yards when they were born.  Indeed, we still live in a society that retains institutional racism.  Many areas in the United States are very discriminatory, and do not allow Blacks to receive the same jobs, wages, or opportunities as Whites.  To correct this, and the great amounts of past injustices, affirmative action programs are absolutely necessary in the present to create a level playing field for Blacks and Latinos.  Without this, there is a great amount of chance that minorities could not compete for the same opportunities as Whites.  Certainly, affirmative action at face value seems to be inherently unequal, but picture that Black football player being forced to go those extra 3 yards because of the skin he was born with.  Giving him those yards back to him through affirmative action programs is only fair.

Liberalism was born John Stuart Mill’s idea regarding the need for individual liberty.  Liberals in America today continue that spirit with programs that curtail damage unrestrained liberty causes to others and helping those in society who have their own individual rights restricted.  Conservatives who seek to undo these efforts if anything seek to put limits of what the individual can do.

Aron Kirschner
kirschne@stanford.edu
 


Posts: 0 | Posted: 10:26 PM on April 29, 2003 | IP
CalDave1413

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I don't know about the affirmitive action argument whites aren't given the 3 yards because we're white, a [i]majority[i] of whites get an extra yard because in general we have more money and better educations.  The reason that blacks in general have less money and therefore poorer educations is because of past racism.  But if you give them a helping hand by shoving someone else away who had nothing at all to do with the past racism, your punishing them for something they never did.


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GO BEARS!!
 


Posts: 16 | Posted: 10:38 PM on April 29, 2003 | IP
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First I’d like to compliment Aron Kirschner for clearly articulating himself and avoiding offensive oversimplifications.  

That said, I’d like to offer a brief, point by point analysis of Aron’s arguments.

(Pt. 1 - Agree)
Aron makes an excellent point that liberal support of gun control follows Mill’s argument that individual liberty should be limited only when it harms others.  Handguns and automatic weapons are designed and built to be effective tools for killing human beings.  It therefore makes sense that our individual liberties should not extend to the possession of such weapons.  Furthermore, an individual’s right to bear arms is constitutionally disputable as the Second Amendment is qualified by the following clause: “A well-regulated militia, being necessary to the security of a free state…”  Can we consider an 18 year old kid to be a realistic part of a “well-regulated militia”?

(Pt. 2 - Agree)
I think Aron’s second point is clear enough.  I’d also like to point out that, much like America as a whole, the majority of liberals are Christian.

(Pt. 3 – Disagree Somewhat)
Liberal support of the right to choose is indeed meant to preserve the individual liberties of mothers.  The right to life, however, is also meant to preserve individual liberties – those of the unborn child.  The issue of abortion often becomes, therefore, an issue of definition.  Certainly a fetus is a living being, but at what point does it become a living human being and therefore deserving of the right to life?  To many people, an unborn child, moments before birth, and an infant, moments after birth, are physically and mentally so similar that both must be considered to be human life.  The only difference is that the unborn child is nutritionally dependent on the mother by way of the umbilical cord.  It is considered a horrific and punishable crime to kill an infant, even if it is only two minutes old and has not yet developed to the point of “consciousness” or “awareness of the world.”  Many people therefore consider it contradictory to sanction abortion.  A 3-month-old fetus is only distinct from a 1-minute-old baby in its cellular development, not in its cognitive capacity of self-recognition.  Neither is capable of this.  If asked whether or not it would want to live or die, neither would have an answer.  It becomes difficult, then, to definitively declare the fetus to be unworthy of the right to life and the infant absolutely worthy of the right to life.  As for rape, perhaps a reasonable exception can be made because the mother’s right to choose whether or not to have sex was violated.  And as for instances in which her life is in danger, it is clearly reasonable to protect the mother’s right to life.  Ultimately, both the Pro Life and Pro Choice stances on abortion must be seen as motivated by the preservation of individual rights.

(Pt. 4 – Agree)
As for social security, I agree with Aron that the program is designed to guarantee the individual’s right to economic security.  The privatization of social security eliminates the ability of the poor to adequately invest in their future and to ensure their economic survival when they are no longer able to work.

(Pt. 5 – Agree)
I agree with Aron again here.  Conservative support of vouchers is motivated by a parent’s right to choose their children’s school, but effectively does nothing in terms of the right to choose for the low income families who do not receive vouchers.  Instead, funding for public schools (i.e. schools that guarantee an education for all American children, regardless of their religion or income status) lose funding to support the tuition costs of a select few students who attend private schools (i.e. schools that can turn students away based on their income and aptitude and are not required to accommodate ethnic or religious diversity).  Overall, vouchers reduce the right of ALL children to a good education.  

(Pt. 6 – Agree)
Well said.

(Pt. 7 – Disagree Somewhat)
As for affirmative action, I’d like to try to rearticulate Dave’s argument by suggesting the following:  Affirmative action based on race is designed to compensate people who have been born with fewer opportunities, but in practice, there is no way to guarantee that it helps the people it was designed to help.  Jesse Jackson’s football analogy is useful, but ultimately too simple for the effective analysis of working affirmative action.  Not all white people start 3 yards ahead of all black people.  The existence of “opportunity” is incredibly complex, and in addition to often depending on race, “opportunity” can depend on a number of other things like income, health, religion, sexual orientation, and so on.  Looking at affirmative action in prestigious universities, we see that the African Americans who are admitted are rarely the poor, downtrodden African Americans of the inner city who experience racial prejudice on a daily basis.  More often, they are members of the middle or upper class who, although perhaps being the victims of a few incidents of racism, can hardly be considered disadvantaged in terms of the opportunities and resources available to them.  Under current affirmative action policy, a diabetic white student who was raised in a trailer park, whose father is an abusive alcoholic, and who has had to take on a job at McDonald’s during the school year to support her younger siblings, will be viewed as “3 yards” ahead of a black student who attends Andover and has taken private piano lessons since age 7.  In practice, affirmative action based solely on racial grounds is clearly problematic.  Nevertheless, racial minorities in general have fewer opportunities than white Americans and it would be a horrible injustice to ignore this clear inequality.  To appropriately address this inequality, far more needs to be done at the source of the problem.  The government should devote more energy to ensuring that racial minorities in the inner cities receive the same education and have the same opportunities as white students in suburbia.  Until this is achieved, however, affirmative action should continue to exist, but in a more pragmatic form that takes into account factors besides race - specifically income.

Finally, to answer the general question: Liberal agenda is typically more focused than conservative agenda on the preservation of individual rights – especially when these rights are applied to ALL Americans.  School vouchers, school prayer, the PATRIOT Act, sweeping upper-class tax cuts, and the privatization of Social Security are examples of conservative-backed ideas that limit the rights of certain individuals.  Meanwhile, Civil Unions/gay rights, increased funding for public education, universal health care coverage, and social security are liberal-backed ideas that generally improve, or make equal, the individual rights of all American citizens.

 


Posts: 2 | Posted: 06:52 AM on April 30, 2003 | IP
    
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