Legislating Morality

Discussion in 'Politics' started by FA_Q2, Mar 24, 2012.

  1. FA_Q2
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    FA_Q2 Gold Member

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    I have meant to post this topic for a long time but have failed to do so until I seen Immie recently mention government legislating morality and I could not let another statement like this slide. I have heard time and time again that it is the governments place to legislate morality and that all law is based on this. The worst part is that I hear this mostly from the 'small' government right here on this board. You cannot have a small government at the same time as a government that decides morality. Those two situations are mutually exclusive because a government that is based on determining morality has any and all rights to do whatever it feels is moral at the time.


    IT IS NOT THE GOVERNMENTS PLACE TO LEGISLATE MORALITY. PERIOD.


    It is one of the most egregious things that the government does when it legislates my activities based on what it feels is right and wrong. That was never the place of the government and we should never have given it such an unstoppable power. Now, before you go into making murder or theft illegal and claiming that is legislating morality, it is not. The number one job of the government (and in reality, the only real job of government) should be to protect its citizens rights. It is in that duty that acts like murder, theft and other laws derive their need. It prevents on citizen from infringing on the rights of other citizens.

    Personally, if I were to draft a law, the primary question that should be asked is what right does this law protect. If the answer was none then such a law would be meaningless and discarded. If the government can decide what is immoral and moral, how long are you going to wait for the government to decide that YOUR morality is not the correct morality.

    Well.... let the scathing criticisms begin ;)
     
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  2. MeBelle
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    MeBelle Mebellien Mothership © Supporting Member

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    Three questions, please, if so inclined.

    1)What is your definition of morality?

    2)What do you think is the governments definition of morality?

    3)What do you think/feel/observe the majority of the peoples' definition of morality is?

    TIA :eusa_angel:
     
  3. FA_Q2
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    FA_Q2 Gold Member

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    In this case, it is a moot point. A simple definition though; morality is expressed in what is right and wrong. That can differ from person to person as well as debatable between absolute and subjective but none of that has much to do with the OP unless you believe that the government DOES have the right to legislate morality. In such a case, my definition is moot and it would be yours that matters ;)
    I don't think the government should have any definition at all. It is not their place.
    I have no idea what you are getting at with the third question. Please clarify.
     
  4. Dick Tuck
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    Dick Tuck Board Troll

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    Law, in a democratic society, ought to be able to demonstrate a clear and compelling public need being fulfilled.

    Every big idea that tried to legislate individual moral standards, failed.

    Prohibition...FAIL
    War On Drugs...FAIL
    War On Pornography...FAIL
    War On Private Sexual Relations...FAIL
    The Current War On Women's Reproductive Rights...destined to FAIL
     
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  5. FA_Q2
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    FA_Q2 Gold Member

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    I would also argue against simple 'public need.' Those are vaporous words that can be used to legislate anything at all.

    It is a dire public need to outlaw drugs because they cause massive social harm.

    No, such a law is asinine because it does not infringe on anyone's rights. The only real break I would make to that argument is basic law to protect consumers from business such as not allowing businesses to make false claims. I guess you could make an argument for infringement of rights for that too though.

    Your last quote is a misinterpretation though.
    There is no war on women's reproductive rights, at least not in the way you are framing it. If you are talking about BC pills then the right is spot on. If you are talking about abortion then the extremes on both sides are dead wrong and the answer lies in the middle. Strangely enough, that happens to be close to where the line is anyway and the solid truth is that abortion is not going to change anytime soon.
     
    Last edited: Mar 24, 2012
  6. MeBelle
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    MeBelle Mebellien Mothership © Supporting Member

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    When you speak with other people, what observations do you come back with, in regards to the majority of people you converse with. :eusa_angel:
     
  7. Dick Tuck
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    Not quite anything at all, since we have enumerated rights. But the constitution does have that pesky "general welfare" clause, and Hamilton clearly states that it's whatever is considered for the public good.

    So does alcohol. However, as we saw in prohibition, all that criminalizing it did was to facilitate the formation of crime syndicates, which I argue caused a greater harm. We see the same thing occurring with the War On Drugs. Looking at countries that decided to legalize it, such as Denmark, demonstrated an actual decrease in hard drugs, and who cares if someone smokes a joint. Contrast that with our laws, and we see increases in the most addictive substances. It's not hard to understand why. The state has no compelling interest in getting people strung out, but drug dealers do.

    First off, I think Roberts is off his rocker when he gave personhood to corporations. The founders knew the danger of granting limited liability, and the ability to wield great sums of money to influence the political process. Here's an irony. The real Tea Party was an attempt to stop a large corporation from using its political muscle to control an industry. It's seems exactly 180 degrees from today's Tea Party.

    I'm all for a middle ground. First trimester, the woman has the choice. After that, only for a good medical reason. But the current attempts to legislate forced vaginal inserted sonograms, for no actual health reason, is clearly nothing more than an attempt to legislate morality.
     
  8. FA_Q2
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    FA_Q2 Gold Member

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    Then it has those pesky enumerations that apply to that clause. General welfare is not a license to do anything and no matter how people try and twist it. If what you are eluding is true, what the hell was the rest of the constitution for. They should have made it one line.
    As I said, public need is asinine. Simple test: what rights do you violate of others when you do a line of blow? Answer: none. There is no basis to illegalize it unless you want to use 'general welfare' or 'public need.' When you go down that road you end up with asinine things like illegal alcohol and illegal drugs. Both asinine concepts.
    I don't think that is what the case actually stipulates but rather that it is an infringement upon your freedom of speech rights if you limit them solely on the basis that there are more of you together. Not only that, but I disagree that such limits make any sense whatsoever when not applied to all or that limits should be imposed by some arbitrary governmental agency as was don in that case. I agree with the ruling on those grounds and the fact that you are not going to get money out of politics in that manner. I prefer a method that I posted in another thread -

    Make congressional/presidential pay permanent set at 100 percent until death but also make it illegal to ever, in any shape or form, earn money from any other source. Once a servant at that level, you would remain a servant.
    Yes they are and they are idiotic attempts at that. So blatant, they are guaranteed to fail. Also, I believe that the VAST majority of people are all in agreement here about first trimester or around that time frames and for medical purposes afterword. It is the noisy fringe that want to kill babies that have been birthed but the umbilical cord cut or want you to be beholden as a rape victim to birth the child.
     
  9. FA_Q2
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    FA_Q2 Gold Member

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    A vast majority of different things that go from extreme entitlement mentality to hard working individuals, murderous bigots to deeply convicted spiritual people, war mongers to pacifists. There are many different people with a wide variety of convictions. One core reason that government does not need to be involved.
     
  10. uscitizen
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    uscitizen Senior Member

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    So no laws against murder?
    Theft?
    Assault?
    Rape?
     

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