The Last word on hate Crimes.

greyboi's picture

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Here is my conservative legal perspective, from a libertarian POV:
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There are generally two sides of the debate on hate crimes legislation.

On the pro-legislation side we generally hear:

"A hate crime is unlike any other crime. It not only affects the person who the crime is committed against, it affects the entire sector of society that that individual was brought up in and the community that individual lives in. It is the worst kind of crime in that it leaves lasting effects and sends a chilling atmosphere that hinders people in the everyday activites, forever altering their lives."

On the anti-legislation side we generally hear:

"A crime is a crime. When you kill a person, you kill them. We can't punish a person more for their thoughts. Are we going to advocate the criminalization of bad thoughts? Even though prejudice is wrong, a person has the right to have their own bias. It doesn't justify the bias, but they are guarantteed that bias in the First Amendement."

What has not been realized here is that both sides have made agreeable points. However, there are a few things to be cleared up on both sides...

1.) This statement:

"A hate crime is unlike any other crime."

This is purely a matter of perspective. It is a legitimate moral argument but holds no weight in terms of legislation. Crimes are graded in their intensity, not their distinction from other crimes.

To me, rape is unlike any other crime. Murder is unlike any other crime. Child sexual abuse is unlike any other crime. We can argue this way and never get anywhere.

2.) This statement:

"A crime is a crime. When you kill a person, you kill them."

This is a flawed presupposition. Not all crimes are similar. Once again, crimes are graded on intensity. There is a large difference between incidental homicide in self-defense, manslaughter and murder. Crimes are judged by what degree they are committed.

3.) This statement:

"It is the worst kind of crime in that it leaves lasting effects and sends a chilling atmosphere that hinders people in the everyday activites, forever altering their lives."

This is pure emotional sentiment, but it will not have any meaningful effect on a conservative judge. Laws are written in, not to dispense morality, but to provide a rational basis for assessing the necessity of government intervention for the safety of all individuals.

4.) This statement:

"We can't punish a person more for their thoughts. Are we going to advocate the criminalization of bad thoughts?"

Actually, we can and we do punish people for their thoughts. However, having evil thoughts alone is not a crime. Crimes are not just graded on intesity. They are also graded on motivation. Having a particular thought will not put you in jail under our Constitution's protections, but if you commit a crime with a particualr motivation, your penalty is also increased.

Take homicide, for instance. When you kill a person by mistake (bad car accident) you might be put in jail for 5 years and have to pay a hefy fine. It is deemed "manslaughter".

However, if you plan out how you are going to kill this person and then go through with it, you may get 25 years to life in prison or worse, the death penalty.

Thoughts are not crimes, but crimes are judged on the perpetrator's thoughts.

5.) And this statement:

"Even though prejudice is wrong, a person has the right to have their own bias. It doesn't justify the bias, but they are guarantteed that bias in the First Amendement."

Yes, a person does have the right to have their own biases. This is not a crime. It is guaranteed in our Constitution. However, our Constitution has also been interpreted by the U.S. Supreme Court in such a way that one can have freedom and liberty, so long as that freedom and liberty in line with the laws and does not interfere with the secured rights of other individuals.

CONCLUSION:

So, it's fair to say that hate crime legislation makes sense. A person is being judged on their motivations, like on any other crime. The bias itself is not being punished, but it is not completely left out of the picture.

If the crime is vandalism, and the motivation is hate. The intensity of the crime should be taken into consideration, along with the bias.

If the crime is muder, and the motivation is hate. The intensity of the crime should be taken into consideration, along with the bias.

We can only judge an individual's case, when the entirety the case is taken into account. To ignore certain parts of the case would be an injustice, not only to soceity in general, but to the integrity of our legal system as well.

metrored's picture

+

One could also consider hate crimes a form of terrorism. White teenagers who burn a cross on the lawn of the only black family in the neighborhood are sending a message. Their message is that black families are not allowed in that neighborhood and it is sent not only to the people living in the house that have to see the imprint of a burnt cross everyday till the grass grows back. The message is sent to the family looking at the house down the street or around the corner. To claim this is just kids expressing themselves ignores the broader implications and sends the message the racial intimidation is okay.

I know this is in a nutshell the argument from your point 3 but I don't find it to be purely emotional. Crimes for the purpose of subjugating an entire group of people are all over American History. For example, Lynching (the textbook hate-crime) used to be as American as apple pie during turn of the 19th to 20th century. It was public it was well known. The purpose being to keep blacks in a subjugated position. Replace black with what ever group is applicable at the time and you have a crime of oppression.

Though I still don't consider my argument to be emotional I don't necessarily expect a conservative judge to agree with me because it means that the government would be saying that racism, sexism and homophobia are bad and must be delt with. My problem with conservative judges is that they tend to be racist sexist or homophobic so I've given up on appeasing them.
___________________________________________________________
Chief Lawyer for The Movement to Free Oompa Loompa Land from the Tyrannical Capitalistic Despot Willy Wonka

greyboi's picture

Careful there...

"One could also consider hate crimes a form of terrorism. White teenagers who burn a cross on the lawn of the only black family in the neighborhood are sending a message. Their message is that black families are not allowed in that neighborhood and it is sent not only to the people living in the house that have to see the imprint of a burnt cross everyday till the grass grows back. The message is sent to the family looking at the house down the street or around the corner."

What you are describing is a threat by means of intimidation, which is a crime in all 50 states. "Terrorism" is not the right word. It has too loose a definition and hasn't been completely defined (i.e., "Does it involve killing people or can it just be the destruction of buildings or is it both?").

"To claim this is just kids expressing themselves ignores the broader implications and sends the message the racial intimidation is okay."

I completely agree with you on this point.

"I know this is in a nutshell the argument from your point 3 but I don't find it to be purely emotional."

No, I said it was "pure emotional sentiment", meaning that it was involving a form of rationale, and that such rationale is based entirely on emotion. In this case, the emotion is fear.

Making someone afraid of you is not a crime. Threatening their livelihood is. My point was to illustrate that if we are going to formulate an argument for hate crimes legislation, we are going to have to provide a more solid basis with already existing statutes.

"Crimes for the purpose of subjugating an entire group of people are all over American History. For example, Lynching (the textbook hate-crime) used to be as American as apple pie during turn of the 19th to 20th century. It was public it was well known. The purpose being to keep blacks in a subjugated position. Replace black with what ever group is applicable at the time and you have a crime of oppression."

However, oppression and subjugation are social problems, not legal ones. Women have the longest history of subjugation. I have yet to hear of a lawsuit involving the word "BITCH" inscribed on a women's restroom stall.

We know that such activity is wrong, but we must also understand that morality is not a good way to base legal arguments.

Many homophobic conservatives argue that there is a legal basis for maitaining sodomy laws because they supposedly "reflect morality". Sometimes they say that the laws aren't to be enforced, just to be there to send a message.

Anyone who knows how a courtroom works know that this would only lead to civil chaos. The law was mean to be taken in a rational formula.

As Aristole once wrote:

"The law is reason free from passion."

metrored's picture

never said morality

I chose the word terrorism precisely for its murky meaning and the fact that we're in a "war" against it. Also, hate crimes terrorize communities.

Plus, I never said anthing about morality. I mentioned subjugation and oppression. Homosexual communities don't opress the Christian right so all they have to go on is their definition of morality. Hate crimes keep people from liveing their lives properly. The unless one doesn't believe the government has a responsibility for the well being and equal opportunity of its citizens, then there must be action on the scale of the crime that was committed.
____________________________________________________
Chief Lawyer for The Movement to Free Oompa Loompa Land from the Tyrannical Capitalistic Despot Willy Wonka

jeff's picture

Still not buying it...

I think the thing you are missing in #1 is that hate crime is not a crime in and of itself. It is a crime + hate. They are separate things, as far as I'm concerned. In "hate crime," hate is merely an adjective to the crime itself.

This is carried out further in that it is only presented as a sentencing option, in that you are convicted of the crime first, and then it is determined whether it was also a hate crime (much of the same way a death penatly case first finds you guilty of murder, and then determines whether you meet the criteria for the death penalty), and that then affects your sentence. So, even when applied, you cannot be convicted of a "hate crime" outright, they determine whether there was a crime, and then whether there was hate.

I just think it serves no purpose.

As for #3, that again is all crime. If some white guy kills randomly some white girl, the white girl's family will forever be affected. If it is a white racist killing a white lesbian, the white lesbian's family will forever be affected. No sentencing measure ever accounts for the crime, except for people who use the criminal justice system as a form of vengeance rather than actually dealing with their loss...

Jeff

Jeff
---
I am Willy Wonka.

greyboi's picture

Sentancing doesn't heal grief, but it brings justice

"I think the thing you are missing in #1 is that hate crime is not a crime in and of itself. It is a crime + hate. They are separate things, as far as I'm concerned. In "hate crime," hate is merely an adjective to the crime itself."

On a purely lingustic level this argument actually at first seems legitimate, but on a more rational basis we know that "hate" is not merely a descriptor. It is motivation behind the crime. And motivation plays a key role in determining the severity of a crime, as I outlined in the #4 response.

"As for #3, that again is all crime. If some white guy kills randomly some white girl, the white girl's family will forever be affected. If it is a white racist killing a white lesbian, the white lesbian's family will forever be affected."

You are confusing a general incident with a hate-motivated incident. There is a large difference in a person being killed who just happens to be white or lesbian and a person being killed BECAUSE they happen to be white or lesbian.

And hate crimes legislation is not limited to gays, blacks, Jews, and other commonly targeted groups. The language says "race, gender, sex, and sexual orientation". This is supposed to include people of all varities and eliminates the idea that some people need to be legally protected more than others (said "special rights").

"No sentencing measure ever accounts for the crime, except for people who use the criminal justice system as a form of vengeance rather than actually dealing with their loss..."

This is quite often wrongly assumed by many: that the victim's families are "just seeking revenge".

When Matthew Shepard's killers were on trial, the issue of the death penalty hung in the air for weeks. Why? Because Matthew had died from his beating (murder) and he and his parents were also pro-death penalty. It so happened that the Shepard family decided that the two boys would get life without parole instead. They figured that the killing should stop and that justice should just be served by other means. They knew that no punishment they allowed would replace their son but that if they let them live, they could atleast allow society to understand the nature of what drove them to kill in the first place.

If the town hadn't used the recently applied hate crimes statute, they would have probably have gotten off with just probation by utilizing the "gay panic" defense, like what had been occuring consistently in the past.

jeff's picture

OK then...

If that is the case for hate crimes, I am definitely against them.

I covered capital criems for a daily newspaper for about three years, so my entire days were spent in rape and murder trials, so people using the system as a means of closure isn't speculation, but observation.

Jeff
---
I am Willy Wonka.

adbak's picture

The way I see it

is that hate crimes are crimes that are based solely or mostly on a prejudice, be it racism, homophobia or other.

eTgen's picture

Hate Crime- A savage Hypocrisy....

I'm sorry- but Hate crimes are the stupidist thing ever. They represent everything that is hypocritical with the left. I present, therefore, the boys of South Park to present their case and to free Cartman.

-------start.....


Governor: Well, boys, what can I do for you?!

Stan: (to Kyle) Okay! Go ahead and start!

Kyle: I don't start! You start!

Stan: Oh, yeah! (to Governor) Hm'm'm! Hello, Mister Governor and thank you for taking the time to hear our presentation on hate crime laws entitled (flips the first page which reads the following.) "Hate Crime Laws. A Savage Hypocracy."! (Kyle starts the tape.) Yes, over the past few years, our great country has been developing new hate crime laws!

Tokken: (the next page shows somebody killing another person.) If somebody kills somebody, it's a crime! But if somebody kills somebody of a different colour, it's a hate crime!

Kyle: And we think that that is (turns back to the title page.) a savage hypocracy, because all crimes are hate crimes! If a man beats another man because that man was sleeping with his wife, is that not a hate crime?!

Stan: (turns to a page revealing a person putting graphitie on a government building.) If a person vandalizes a government building, is it not because of his hate for the government?!

Tokken: (turns to a page revealing someone driving a car over someone else.) The motivation for a crime shouldn't affect the sentancing!

Stan: (turns to a page will people in groups of five colours and a question mark in the middle.) Mayor, it is time to stop splitting people into groups! All hate crime laws do is support the ideas that blacks are different from whites, that homosexuals need to be treated differently from not-homos, that we aren't the same!

Kyle: (turns to a page with people of different colours all in a line holding hands.) But instead, we should all be treated the same, with the same laws, and the same punishments for the same crime! (Stan turns the page to a complete Hate Crime Proposal.) For in that way, Cartman can be freed from prison and we (turns to a page revealing four boys winning a sled race) will have a chance to win the sledding race on Thursday!

Stan: That is our presentation, an idea that we call...!

Tokken: (turns back to the title page) Hate Crime Laws! A Savage Hypocracy!

Governor: Hm! That made the most sence of any presentation I've heard in the last three years!
-------fins.....

latterz,

eTgen
---
CEO, President, Founder, and First member of:

The Movement To Free Ommpa loompa Land From The Tyrannical Rule Of The Evil Capitalsitic Despot Willy Wonka And Associates

[TMTFOLLFTTROTECDWWAA]

metrored's picture

bullshit...

Please tell me you have something better than South Park to prove your point.

____________________________________________________________
Chief Lawyer for The Movement to Free Oompa Loompa Land from the Tyrannical Capitalistic Despot Willy Wonka

Tiki's picture

aw

come on, don't be dissin the south park. :)
a little light relief is welcome in these heavy threads for those of us with short attention spans. (and a love of south park.)
cheers, etgen.

Dreaming of the Blue Hawaiian Diner...

JB's picture

lowest common denominator

sometimes it the best thing to use in an arguement. or just a simple "laymens terms"

JB
Vice President and Drug Tzar of The Movement To Free Ommpa loompa Land From The Tyrannical Rule Of The Evil Capitalsitic Despot Willy Wonka And Associates

greyboi's picture

how absurd!

Aside from the moronic absudity in this script and your apparent neglect to viewing my presented argument, I will give you an analytical breakdown.

"Stan: Oh, yeah! (to Governor) Hm'm'm! Hello, Mister Governor and thank you for taking the time to hear our presentation on hate crime laws entitled (flips the first page which reads the following.) "Hate Crime Laws. A Savage Hypocracy."! (Kyle starts the tape.) Yes, over the past few years, our great country has been developing new hate crime laws!"

Past few years? Hate crimes legislation has taken place since the late 1960's. It was only when "President" George Bush Jr. refused to sign a law in (when he was Texas governor) because the bill had included "sexual orientation" that it became public controversy. Bush said during the election debate forums that he would have had no problem with the bill without this addition, but since it had included sexual orientation, it somehow provided "special rights".

"Tokken: (the next page shows somebody killing another person.) If somebody kills somebody, it's a crime! But if somebody kills somebody of a different colour, it's a hate crime!"

That's just rhetoric and a BIG lie. Hate crimes legislation uses the terms "race", "gender", and "sexual orientation". It never says "person of color" or "gay person". That's just something bigots want you to think. They also want you to think that "people of color" have never committed hate crimes against white people. Actually, it has happened plenty of times. Hate and racism work both ways. It's just that hate crimes against minorites tend to get publicized a lot more.

"Kyle: And we think that that is (turns back to the title page.) a savage hypocracy, because all crimes are hate crimes! If a man beats another man because that man was sleeping with his wife, is that not a hate crime?!"

Your appeal to semantics is insulting. That man surely didn't beat that man simply because he was a man. I'm sure he would have used violence as well (if not even more) if that person was a female.

"Stan: (turns to a page revealing a person putting graphitie on a government building.) If a person vandalizes a government building, is it not because of his hate for the government?!"

Is the government a living, breathing person or just an institution with persons that make up it?

"Tokken: (turns to a page revealing someone driving a car over someone else.) The motivation for a crime shouldn't affect the sentancing!"

In #4 I outlined how motivation already plays a role in sentancing and how it is quite important in determining the severity of an incident.

"Stan: (turns to a page will people in groups of five colours and a question mark in the middle.) Mayor, it is time to stop splitting people into groups! All hate crime laws do is support the ideas that blacks are different from whites, that homosexuals need to be treated differently from not-homos, that we aren't the same!"

Similar to the argument agaist affirmation-action in the Michigan case, this argument (1) assumes that bigots are "colorblind" and impartial to sexual orientation, (2) laws aimed at ending prejudice create prejudice in themselves, and (3) assumes that there is already a present equity in the way gays and blacks are being treated and that the situation deserves no remedy.

As I outlined above, the laws are not specialized. They have general terms that apply to all groups.

South Park does well for a cheap thrill form of entertainment, but its writers obviously don't pay much attention to politics or the issues involved.

eTgen's picture

Perhaps...

Hey, Grey, getting a fucking TV and watch the show. South Park is a sanctuary of rationality. Its low brow humor aside, South Park is a very good social commentary. If you had actually seen the show you would realize that it is not just "cheap thrills". But perhaps you are too "good" for South Park.

I really don't feel like pointing out how horribly wrong you are. Let me just say that Hate-Crime like much of the Liberal legislation out there does more discriminating than anything. Why should companies, schools etc... look at the race of an applicant? Does it make that much difference? No! Apparently though you think I am wrong! A stupid black person is better than a smart white person? Please! A smart person is better than a stupid person- regardless of color.

A crime is a crime is crime. None of your ridiculous arguments can convince me otherwise. Rape of a white person by a white person is no different than rape of a black person by a white person, or rape of a black person by a black person, or etc... Seriously they are all rapes. And if you think all people are criminals are racists than you are an absolute idiot! Perhaps you should take a course on criminology- and learn something!

And don't play the goddamn race card on me- because I am not racist.

tsch

metrored's picture

disappointed

Perhaps you should point out how wrong he is because you've been doing very little of that. South Park is social commentary but the only thing this episode proves is that Trey Stone and Matt Parker are against hate crimes legislation. The arguments against it in the show are still piss poor. Unless you can claim to know of scores of white boys unjustly put away because they just happen to be assholes around the token black (queer, hispanic, asian...) child then I won't be swayed by your arguments either.

Companies, schools, etc... look at the race of applicants because they (or at least a few) recognize that this country is racist and has been all its life and they would like to help bridge the gap of race and class privilege just a little so they can allow some qualified (yes we are qualified) people of color (and poor whites depending on the program) and women, break into the world of upward economic mobility. Understanding this concept may require one to view beyond the individual level, though there are many individual stories that illustrate the benefits of affirmative action. If it helps, I take issue with affirmative action as well (its a little weak).

What exactly are you not convinced about, are you not convinced about the history of hate crimes in America? If you take a black history course or just about any ethnic studies course (if you school has a good department), you'll find them all over. Are you not sure on the distinction between racially motivated crimes and crimes involving people of different races? You seem to be overlooking it. Perhaps you could reread the other posts or do some research on the topic.

By the way, I'm so glad your not a racist. Did someone just confirm it for you or did you come to that realization on your own? Do you feel the need to let people know that your not racist a lot? I'm curious because people normally don't have to let others know.

_________________________________________
Chief Lawyer for The Movement to Free Oompa Loompa Land from the Tyrannical Capitalistic Despot Willy Wonka

greyboi's picture

;-)

;-)

greyboi's picture

Oh please!

"Hey, Grey, getting a f**king TV and watch the show."

One of the benefits of heading off to school was the priviledge of being able to finally turn of my television when such was desired, primarily for introspection and concentration on 12-page essays. I am tired and finally rid of having to suffer through my younger brother's nightly indulgences of Cartman's flatulence and the obsession with exaggerated sterotypical images of gay men. Finally I get an hour of silence!

"South Park is a sanctuary of rationality. Its low brow humor aside, South Park is a very good social commentary."

For every fart, there's an underlying moral. How creative!

"If you had actually seen the show you would realize that it is not just "cheap thrills"."

I have seen the show and I have to say that of what I have seen I was sadly disappointed.

"But perhaps you are too "good" for South Park."

No. Perhaps South Park is just below my level. Believing something is distasteful and useless is not the same as claiming moral superiority. It's simply being honest about one's feeelings toward a particular aspect and iterating that not all things bring entertainment to everyone.

"I really don't feel like pointing out how horribly wrong you are."

No, please do. I'm anxious in hearing your side of this issue. If I am wrong, I want to be enlightened.

"Let me just say that Hate-Crime like much of the Liberal legislation out there does more discriminating than anything."

Discriminating between motivation and pure incidence is the job of the courts. It can delineate the difference between murder and manslaugher, self-defence and attack.

In fact, the U.S. Supreme Court examines all its civil rights cases with several techniques called "discrimination". This is notably done with the Equal Protection Clause. There are various forms. The one we're most familar with is "rational basis". There's also "strict scrutiny" and "compelling interest to the law".

Not all discrimination is illegal or bad. There is both negative and positive types. Negative discrimination is illegal. Currently negative discrimination means denying someone equal protection of the law soley on the basis of "race, national origin, or, in some situations, non U.S. citizenship (the suspect classes)". California includes "disability, seuxal orientation, and gender".

This does not mean that courts are not to make distinctions on these terms. This only applies if equal protection is infringed. Nowhere is "equality" mentioned. (If it was, some would be able to sue the government due to inequalities of wealth, social status, etc.)

In fact, courts have used positive discrimination to employ remedial laws to end negative discrimination. For a while, they used school busing and affirmative-action to remedy the effects of racial segregation and job and education inequities. Another good example or positive discrimination is Title IX, used to bridge the gender gap in sexist school environments. The situation improved for the most part. However, it was found that when affirmative action policies were removed, desinated minority enrollment in college dropped by 98% and by 59% in government employment (Encarta, 2002).

"Why should companies, schools etc... look at the race of an applicant?"

They already do. Affirmative-action laws take into consideration that many conservatives aren't as "colorblind" as they claim. Ever wonder why in this country ethinic minorites' countries of origin are attached to their national title? Sean Hannity can call himself "Irish", but me, I can't be an "African". I have to be an "African-American". That's my granted specialty treatment from conservatives.

"Does it make that much difference? No!"

Apparently, it makes a lot of differene when an employer reads the application "Michael Calhoun" over "Tyrone Proctor". Having a "black-sounding" is just as bad as checking off the "Non-Hispanic, African-American" box.

"Apparently though you think I am wrong! A stupid black person is better than a smart white person? Please! A smart person is better than a stupid person- regardless of color."

Ever wonder how that "stupid black person" got into such a predicatment? Economic desparity. And how did that happen? Slavery. What does this do? Create a cycle of poverty. How does poverty affect education? Property taxes pay for state funding of education. Poor people have poor housing. The cheaper the houses the cheaper the schools. The poorer your parents, the less money they have to pay for your SAT and the thousand-dollar Kaplan pre-test training sessions.

"A crime is a crime is crime. None of your ridiculous arguments can convince me otherwise."

Apparently they convinced the justices of several state legislatures otherwise. To this day, nearly every state has hate crimes legislation. The only thing is, not all of them mention "sexual orientation" and "gender identity". Those that don't have "hate crime" laws simply have ambiguious laws providing punishment for "bias-related incidents".

"Rape of a white person by a white person is no different than rape of a black person by a white person, or rape of a black person by a black person, or etc... "

I doesn't matter what the color of the person is. What matters is the motivation. Most recently, several men in West Hollywood, California were charged with hate crimes against Arab Muslims, even though their victims were just blacks and Hispanics that were the victims of mistaken identity.

Hate crimes legislation doesn't look on the outside. It examines what goes on inside of the mind of the perpetrator. Hate crimes legislation doesn't see race. It sees the cause of the crime for what it is.

"Seriously they are all rapes. And if you think all people are criminals are racists than you are an absolute idiot! Perhaps you should take a course on criminology- and learn something!"

Perhaps you should take a course on the basics of U.S. Government. You might learn something. I don't need an extra course in some specialized form of sociology to understand what goes on in the minds of legislators.

"And don't play the goddamn race card on me- because I am not racist."

"Race card"? Conservatives invented the idea of a "race card" out of jealousy that liberals were winning the minority vote. There would be no "race card" if race was never a part of politics to begin with. However, it seems like more and more, everyday, people are complaining of focusing on race when all they can seem to talk about are fanciful "race cards" that people are "playing" against them, as if conversation were some card game and they were on the losing end. Then they go about hurriedly declaring that they're "not a racist" and they suddenly wonder where all this race talk somehow originated.

"Remember always that all of us...are descended from immigrants and revolutionists."
- Franklin D. Roosevelt

greyboi's picture

Hmmm...

Considering the replies that I have been getting here, I find it interesting that people feel the need to label me a "conservative" while at the same time attacking my position for hate crimes legislation. Some would call my position "liberal". This inconsistency only demonstrates the ineffectuality of labeling done by those in the supposed "liberal" camp.

JB's picture

umm

greling you ar ethe one labeling yourself. please.. I am gonna label you too... "delusional"

JB
Vice President and Drug Tzar of The Movement To Free Ommpa loompa Land From The Tyrannical Rule Of The Evil Capitalsitic Despot Willy Wonka And Associates

greyboi's picture

Well, you see...

I labeled myself "centrist libertarian". I have the right to do so.

However, I found it interesting that Jeff once assumed I was a "neo-conservative" and eTgen said "You want so bad to be a conservative, yet you are like everyone else. A dirty liberal."
" (on another board).

I find these things hilarious, especially when I find eTgen later criticizing my liberal positions on affirmative-action and hate crimes legislation as being "like much of the Liberal legislation out there [: doing] more discriminating than anything." If anything is delusional, that's delusional!

Laterz,

Grey

jeff's picture

Umm...

Bruce Bawer and Andrew sullivan are pretty much the rank and file of the neo-conservative movement, so given how often you've cited their books on here. I know the Bawer has come up more than once, that isn't a huge leap of faith.

I mean, you aren't telling people to read Urvashi Vaid and Michelangelo Signorile...

Jeff
---
I am Willy Wonka.

greyboi's picture

Why the same old, same old?

"I mean, you aren't telling people to read Urvashi Vaid and Michelangelo Signorile..."

I have books by Vaid ("Vested Interests") and Signorile ("Outing Yourself", "Life Outside"), too. Like any socio-political commentary, I take them, along with a grain of salt.

There are some things I disagree with Bawer on (i.e., his stance on multiculturalism in education; his views on affirmative-action and school "choice"), however, I've still found his case to prove the most compelling in terms of gay rights activists. Signorile and Vaid provide much insight to the inner-linings of the gay subculture, but they do not offer a clear message for those who have never considered gay rights in politics.

Andrew Sullivan is an interesting man, but I find that he concedes too easily to right-wing pressure. He has no problems appealing to conservative secularists, but he falls victim to easily when Catholic parishoners start maurading him for his "sins".

I have books by Paul Monette, but I've found that they only provide me with some idea of what gay life was like in the early past and Monette doesn't issue any good moral advice for today's youth environment and his books are more of an appeal to sympathy than reason.

I recommended Bawer's book, along with Andrew Sullivan's because they offer a legitimate argument in favor of gay rights that appeals to the vast majority of Americans. If you can look past Bawer's obsession with the salient aspects of Pride, his book would make a lot more sense to you than if you focused on his disadain with those with "skimpy outfits". Bawer tells us that one can be gay without having one's sexual orientation made into an all-encompassing trait, that one can be gay without having to subscribe to politically-correct, stereotypical, typified images set forth by the gay subculture.

I also recommended Sullivan's book, because when read alongside Bawer's book, the picture is almost complete. Andrew provides the concillatory lamentations, while Bawer provides the polemic punch.

My endorsement of these books do not mean that I fully subscibe to their ideologies. I have yet to find an author in which I can do that.

For a comprehesive historical perspective from both gay liberals, moderates and conservatives, I also recommend Stonewall by Martin Duberman.

For self-help on maintaining gay and lesbian relationships I also recommend:

Intimacy Between Men by by John H. Driggs, Stephen E. Finn (Contributor) , and Lesbian Couples by D. Merilee, Ph.D. Clunis, et al

eTgen's picture

Very well...

Note:
Because this is long, I thought it would be beneficial to not have this attached to the Greling

metrored's picture

but wait there's more

Wow, this is a lot, thank you for elaborating your postion.

Just so you know where I'm comming from, the main points I picked up on from reading your post are.

1) racial hatred isn't especially worse than anything else that would cause someone to commit a crime.

2) affirmative action is bad as is Title IV

3) poor people are poor because they aren't smart enough to pull themseves out of poverty. This pretty much sounds like your saying that por people are not as smart as rich people ans that blacks aren't as smart as whites (PLease tell me I'm wrong here).

4) public education should be privatized, I'm assuming you mean by for-profit organizations such as Edison Schools Inc. as well as developing private school vouchers.

If I misinterpreted, please correct me.

Now, part 2

1) I can't do much to convince you here other than to say: YES, racial hatred is a lot worse than simple greed! It is not good for one group to be targeted for crime simply because of who they are. Robber G is stealing the watch because he wants money. Robber R is stealing the watch because he belives Joe, as a black man, should not have money or status in any community. Also Robber R wants money.

The reason why Joe is more victimized by robber R is that Robber R was trying to keep Joe "in his place" as a black man, and by that I mean in a subservient place in society, under white people. Robber R commited his crime to support white supremacy. Robber G didn't. This leads me to my primary philosophical point.

White Supremacey is wrong and should be dismantled in this country.

I will understand if not all of the people reading this will agree with my point as it is somewhat of a radical position.

2) for number two, I'll focus on Tyrone Procter and Micheal Calhoon. There is some information that you seem to be leaving out. Where to these two boys go to school? What communities do they live in and how has that affected the opportunities they have had?

I say this because being a member of a black middle class community in this country tends to not be the same as being a member of a white middle class community. Black middle class communities are not as homogeneous econimically, meaning black middle class families tend to not have access to the same resources as white middle class families. The easiest to mention of these resources are schools. Tyrone probably went to a shitty school or since his parents are middle class they had him placed on a magnet school or in a white middle class school like Michael's. At the shity school Tyrone would have had to work a lot harder to make up for the resources that Michael has and he lacks. If he went to the good school then he probably faced something different like the assumption that he needs to be put in remedial everything because he's black. Don't underestimate the struggles of minority students in all white school cause there is a lot of racism. I should know, I have a lot in common with Tyrone Procter. If you want to know more about the black middle class in America I suggest you read "Black Picket Fences" by Mary Pattillo-McCoy.

I'm not done with number two yet. You forgot to mention Jenny Campbell, the equally well off white girl who lives down the street from, Micheal and goes to his high school. She is in all of the same activities as he and has the saame GPA and SAT scores. Unfortunately, University X will pick Michael Calhoon over Jenny Campbell. There are so many more qualified white females applying that year that the bar had to be raised so that there could be a decent gender balance.

Lets also not forget Andrew Stevens from Maine who has a 3.2 GPA and 1300 SATs. He's the only one applying from his state and since University X is a national school that wants students from all over the country, he has a good chance of getting in than maybe Michael or Jenny who are may be one of hundreds from that state who apply.

Plus I should mention that Robert P. still has a really high SAT score seeing as the SATs tend to follow racial and class lines. Black and Hspanic kids end to score lower on SATs than their white counter parts, this is not because they are less smart (which I think you've been implying) but because the SATs seem to have cultural and class bias built in. I can give you more examples but I'm pressed for time and need to move on.

This leads me to points number two and three:

The SATs are better at judging a student's race and class than they are at judging his scholastic aptitude.

Taking away affirmative action means taking away minority access to college outside of HBCUs (until of course, historically black schools are made all white in response to increasing competition for college admission).

3) You really need to study up on class in the United States. You're ignoring a lot of privilege that keeps you where you are and someon else where he is. You seem to think its intelligence but there is but so far being smart can take you. I'm pretty sure you're dad had to work damn hard to make it from poor London to sucessful docter and I wouldn't be surprised if he had a few breaks that most poor folks don't get. Also, no offese but, I'm sure your dad's position as a successful doctor allowed you to not have to face half of the challenges that he or any other working class or poor person in this country would have to face.

Also to reference the "Public schools: make them private" (which I wil get to), the author mentions a growing stratification betwen the wealthy and poor in the developed world. There are fewer opportunities for economic advancement in this country than there were fifty years ago. This plays a big role in the racialized communities in this counry who, once they stopped being kept out of the industry jobs that had acted as the economic stepping stones for everyone else in this country, found those jobs disappearing as multinationals relocated around the world in search of cheap labor.

The only thing I can really say is that you need to think about the role your wealth and race (in relation to those in power in the country) has played in where you are now as opposed to where someone else who may be poorer or darker is in this world.

4) This is the one that hit hardest. I was born and raised in Philadelphia, in the Philadelphia public school system. Both my parents teach in that system as did my retired grandmother (she still does some subbing though). If you follwed any type of educational news last year you might already know what I'm about to say.

Arguments for privatizing education come from the fact that many state legislatures are not commitied to properly educating urban (which usually means black and hispanic) kids. Instead, they come up with ways to exploit us and make a profit.

example:

Edison Schools Inc. it the largest for-profit educational institution in the country. It claims to be able to make money off of poor schools. Unfortunatly is hasn't done so. Not only has it not made money, it a horrible track record and has been kicked out of a lot of the districts that it has been put into.

Common claims against Edison are that they have a tendency of:

*expelling anyone who may be difficult. This has ussually meant special needs students as well as black males. In the Chester School district (a poor. mostly black district outside of Philadelphia) nearly half or the students found themselves expelled or suspended after Edison took over.

*Falsifying success stories. Only a certain number of students in many edison school take the standardized tests are used to prove that the school is doing better as opposed to all students taking the same test in the public school. Much of the progress that Edison calim its schools have made has been called into question when analyzed.

this leads me to another one of my major points

Schools stop functioning as schools when the primary goal stops being to educate students and starts being to make money.

Vouchers act to support those who already go to private schools. I'm sure every family would love to get a 00=3000 cut I tuition, but 00 will not pay for a ,000 private school. That money, coming from the public school budget will result in fewer resources in the public schools that already exist.

No one talks dismantling in wealthy public school districts. Why? because those schools work just fine. Why it that? because they have a shit-load more money to work with!

Addressing "Public Schools make them Private", in 1955 public schools were still segregated. Black schools got whatever money was left after the white public school received its funding. The Brown v. Board of education case happened only a year before and hadn't taken effect in many schools. After schools were forced to desegregate (which often ended in violence), public education suddenly became something inherently flawed. Friedmen seems to ignore that information.

Friedmen also seems to leave out any mention of succesful educational policy in his article. I guess I wouldn't expect him to do that since he's and economist instead of an educator. With that said he still should have mentioned that lowering class size is more proven to help schools than limiting the amount of influence trained (and might I add underpaid) educators have on how schools should be run.

Therre is probably moe I can say and more eloquent was to put this but it's 4 in the morning and I'm going to bed.

___________________________
Chief Lawyer for The Movement to Free Oompa Loompa Land from the Tyrannical Capitalistic Despot Willy Wonka

greyboi's picture

Clarity...

"Yes at times the television can be an unwanted distraction, however, at other times it can be an escape and a form of relaxation. At times, one must relax- and have fun. Laugh."

Improvisational theatre and yoga don't require a TV. Afterall, aren't health experts saying that we need to get out more these days?

"I quote Barry S. Fagin from Reason Magazine... I suggest perhaps you read the article. However, I give warning that it might be too rational."

Just because you quote from a libertarian magazine doesn't somehow make it correct. Libertarianism is about individual beliefs and individual freedom. Most libertarians aren't part of the Libertarian Party or Cato Institute and do not subscribe to libertarian-centered magazines.

"If something is below your level than, ipso facto, you are above it."

When I say something is below my level, I mean it is below my stardards. I'm not making a morality-based judgement. Just expressing my personal preferences.

"Hate crimes punish opinions."

Hate crimes punish motivations, not opinions.

"You compare a thought to premeditated murder."

Thoughts are ideas. Premeditations are motivations; they are linked with intent. The motivation in a hate crime is strictly to terrorize a particular individual or community.

"Just because a person hates a certain group- and goes about killing, oh lets say a Gay Man- why should he be punished more because he hates homosexuals?"

The person isn't punished for hating homosexuals. People have the legal right to hate whomever they want, no matter how unjustified that hate is. The person is punished for (1) expressing intent to carry out a fear-generating kind of violence, (2) actually carrying out that violence (whether it be graffit or murder) and creating a chilling effect that spreads throughout the community.

"Under hate law legislation- someone who rights upon a school wall "All fags must die" needs to punished harsher than a romantic you writes "I love Sally". Why? Both are committing the same crime- vandalism, but just because one person has an opinion that is less commonly accepted than the other (or rather more extreme) he should be punished harsher? This is thought police and it is wrong."

Clearly you seem to not recognize the difference between "All fags must die" and "I love Sally". "All fags must die" expresses an intent to instill fear. This is clearly intimidation. "I love Sally" does not. It expresses a romatic sentiment. The opinion "All fags must die" is not an illegal opinion, but it will be up to the courts to decide if intimidation was the motivation behind this crime. If it is, then it gets a stiffer penalty than "I love Sally".

"Hate crimes are superfluous."

Hate crimes legislation sees to it that killers like Aaron McKinney don't get off on probation for using the "gay panic" defense. It clarifies that a hateful motivation to inflict harm or intimidation against a particular group simply because of its membership consistency is not the same as "temporary insanity".

"Perhaps, since the men were

jeff's picture

OK...

Since I'm using this as the example of the proper way to conduct ourselves on oasis, just want to make sure we keep this about issues and not people.

Diagree with each other, but make your posts about your points, not assumptions about other posters based on what they are writing.

Jeff
---
I am Willy Wonka.

metrored's picture

dancing is for parties

I feel it would be much more efficient to not dance around what people seem to be saying. Though attacking posts line by line is very thorough it seems to be looking at the trees while the forest is burning. I can't fully adress why someone else hold a position without dissecting his arguments to find where he is coming from ideologically.

______________________________________
Chief Lawyer for The Movement to Free Oompa Loompa Land from the Tyrannical Capitalistic Despot Willy Wonka

greyboi's picture

I Eat Only Food

People love to shove things in my mouth. They shove words and opinions, they shove negative assumptions, and they shove labels and confusion. I just want it to be made clear that I too, like most human beings, was built for digesting food.