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This is me, this is you, this is America!

November 2, 2010 Comments off

Democrat slavery, Republican liberty

October 14, 2010 Comments off

Political party platforms define the governing political philosophies and how they are to be applied. Platforms for the Democratic party began in 1840, while the Republican party platform began in 1856. It is important that either party was entirely focused on the Constitution more so than any current platform seems to do, although Republicans are showing promise.

The very first Democrat party platform was in 1840 and it lists 9 Resolved principles of which politics form.  There is only one mention of slavery and it is number 7. It states;

7. Resolved, That congress has no power, under the constitution, to interfere with or control the domestic institutions of the several states, and that such states are the sole and proper judges of everything appertaining to their own affairs, not prohibited by the constitution; that all efforts by abolitionists or others, made to induce congress to interfere with questions of slavery, or to take incipient steps in relation thereto, are calculated to lead to the most alarming and dangerous consequences, and that all such efforts have an inevitable tendency to diminish the happiness of the people, and endanger the stability and permanency of the union, and ought not to be countenanced by any friend to our political institutions.

Line one, prior to “;” essentially says that congress should not interfere with, “domestic institutions of the several states”. Now the important part surfaces, as to what these institutions are, namely institutional slavery stating that all efforts by “abolitionists” to rid the US of slavery (one of the United States most tragic histories) was actually to reduce happiness of the people and should not be entertained by any political institution, namely congress. The federal government should not determine the outcome of slavery, inherently the Democratic party saw nothing wrong with slavery, and in fact thought it made people happy. It stays the same for the 1840, 1844 and 1848 platforms until 1852 in which several other governing principles were introduced. Number 7 specifically dealt with slavery, and had lasted since 1840, it was now not given a number and moved below that last number  of 9. Then below, there is an added portion that states;

Resolved, That the democratic party will resist all attempts at renewing, in congress or out of it, the agitation of the slavery question, under whatever shape or color the attempt may be made.

It is clear the Democrat party does not want any change in the use of slavery for America. In 1856, the Republican party is birthed and the 1856 Republican political party platform is defined! How does the Democrat party deal with such opposition to their view that slavery makes people happy? They now make a more coherent argument for slavery, as well as concluding that they are reasserting their focused energy toward that position. The whole platform becomes entrenched with defense of slavery. I will quote some of the more interesting and telling portions below, but not quoting all parts that mention the word “slavery”.

Resolved, That we reiterate with renewed energy of purpose the well considered declarations of former Conventions upon the sectional issue of Domestic slavery, and concerning the reserved rights of the States.

1. That Congress has no power under the Constitution, to interfere with or control the domestic institutions of the several States, and that such States are the sole and proper judges of everything appertaining to their own affairs, not prohibited by the Constitution; that all efforts of the abolitionists, or others, made to induce Congress to interfere with questions of slavery, or to take incipient steps in relation thereto, are calculated to lead to the most alarming and dangerous consequences; and that all such efforts have an inevitable tendency to diminish the happiness of the people and endanger the stability and permanency of the Union, and ought not to be countenanced by any friend of our political institutions.

2. That the foregoing proposition covers, and was intended to embrace the whole subject of slavery agitation in Congress; and therefore, the Democratic party of the Union, standing on this national platform, will abide by and adhere to a faithful execution of the acts known as the compromise measures, settled by the Congress of 1850; “the act for reclaiming fugitives from service or labor,” included; which act being designed to carry out an express provision of the Constitution, cannot, with fidelity thereto, be repealed, or so changed as to destroy or impair its efficiency.

3. That the Democratic party will resist all attempts at renewing, in Congress or out of it, the agitation of the slavery question under whatever shape or color the attempt may be made.

As you can see, point 1 mirrors point 7 from their historical platforms from 1844 to 1852. The great Compromise of 1850 had already finished, halting a four year confrontation between slave supporting states of the South and then non-slave states of the North or free states. This uneasy tension that culminated in 1850 followed the Mexican-American War (1846–1848). Thus in point 2, the Democratic platform was the support of the “compromise measures”, thus because of it being law, could not be agitated or repealed, etc. Point 3 is again a reiteration of what was stated in the 1852 Democrat party platform.

How did the Republican party deal with such law and entrenched interests by the Democrat party? Their 1856 party platform states the following;

This Convention of Delegates, assembled in pursuance of a call addressed to the people of the United States, without regard to past political differences or divisions, who are opposed to the repeal of the Missouri Compromise; to the policy of the present Administration; to the extension of Slavery into Free Territory; in favor of the admission of Kansas as a Free State; of restoring the action of the Federal Government to the principles of Washington and Jefferson; and for the purpose of presenting candidates for the offices of President and Vice-President, do

Resolved: That the maintenance of the principles promulgated in the Declaration of Independence, and embodied in the Federal Constitution are essential to the preservation of our Republican institutions, and that the Federal Constitution, the rights of the States, and the union of the States, must and shall be preserved.

Resolved: That, with our Republican fathers, we hold it to be a self-evident truth, that all men are endowed with the inalienable right to life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness, and that the primary object and ulterior design of our Federal Government were to secure these rights to all persons under its exclusive jurisdiction; that, as our Republican fathers, when they had abolished Slavery in all our National Territory, ordained that no person shall be deprived of life, liberty, or property, without due process of law, it becomes our duty to maintain this provision of the Constitution against all attempts to violate it for the purpose of establishing Slavery in the Territories of the United States by positive legislation, prohibiting its existence or extension therein. That we deny the authority of Congress, of a Territorial Legislation, of any individual, or association of individuals, to give legal existence to Slavery in any Territory of the United States, while the present Constitution shall be maintained.

Resolved: That the Constitution confers upon Congress sovereign powers over the Territories of the United States for their government; and that in the exercise of this power, it is both the right and the imperative duty of Congress to prohibit in the Territories those twin relics of barbarism—Polygamy, and Slavery.

The first paragraph calls for a restoration of principles to “Washington and Jefferson”. Secondly the reliance upon the Declaration of Independence as embodied within the Constitution is honored and preserved which is essentially, if arguing against slavery, liberty for all! Thirdly after paraphrasing the pertinent parts of the Declaration of Independence, the Republican duty is presented;

… to maintain this provision of the Constitution against all attempts to violate it for the purpose of establishing Slavery in the Territories of the United States by positive legislation, prohibiting its existence or extension therein.

Thus to Republicans, the Democrats are interpreting the Constitution in an incredibly racist way, not using an honest originalist perspective. If all are to have liberty and if the Constitution is the best government to facilitate and foster individual liberty and it being the supreme law of the land, to the Republicans;

it is both the right and the imperative duty of Congress to prohibit in the Territories those twin relics of barbarism—Polygamy, and Slavery.

WBC protest Constitutionality

October 6, 2010 Comments off

Here is a little debate I had with a member of Liberal Forum. The WBC or Westboro Baptist Church is blatantly conducting hate speech. I found that the debate was interesting and it helps clarify my position a bit more.

NeoConvict: The idea of hate speech is silly and unconstitutional. You have no constitutional right to go through life without being offended by someones speech. The only speech that should be controlled by criminal law is that which endangers others, not something that simply offends them.

Subby: This is special case, in which it deals with funerals of soldiers. I think there needs to be some sort of law and thus regulation for this. Phelps and his people should not be able to protest within 100 yards or something.

NeoConvict: We have no freedom from being offended in the public square. Civil law and criminal law are different in this case. If ones speech is proven to cause fiscal damages then they should be held liable to civil penalties, regardless of where the speech occurred. Speech on public property should not be restricted unless proven to be a danger to life, liberty or other protected individual rights. As vile as I find the Phelps message to be, as long as its said on public property, they have a Constitutional right to say it.

We most certainly were a Nation founded on the protection of speech that makes others uncomfortable, hence the first amendment.

Subby: There are clear and narrow exceptions on free speech. Namely one of them being fighting words, especially when directed to a particular person. It has to do with what the speech communicates and thus what is intended. The hate speech is CLEARLY been directed to specific individuals by Westboro Baptist Church. That is illegal.

NeoConvict: I would love to see the codification of ‘fighting words’. (Cannot believe I am going to defend the Phelps group) The message that the Phelps are bringing is not directed to any particular soldier, any particular individual. Their message is that their God is displeased with Americans embrace of homosexuality and as a result the US has lost favor in the eyes of their God. They are not carrying signs custom made to say “Your dead son was a homosexual and hated by God.” The message is clearly protected by the first amendment as both free speech and religious speech. Nothing they proclaim on their placards or message is an incitement to violence. They are not offering a reward for the killing of individuals, they are not advocating any direct violence against anyone. While disgusting their speech is protected and the case should certainly go in their favor.

The solution is to bury soldiers on private property and arrest these aholes for trespass rather than try to censor their right to free speech in public.

Subby: Yes Phelps has targeted several specific people before.

The solution is to do what at least 17 states have done or are considering. Either ban protests near funeral sites immediately before and after, or regulate these atrocious hate speech protests some other way as I have suggested, or do nothing. Forget the whole private property approach. You are making the victim, the family, have to choose and thus put in the effort of finding a way around hate speech. That is tip-toeing around the problem, namely the hate speech by Phelps, which is clearly seen as a problem within the United States.

Your view is out of the mainstream and seemingly useless.

NeConvict: What this case will do is make the laws in those 17 States unconstitutional, that is likely why they are hearing it. I don’t like Phelps message but I certainly do not want my speech curtailed if the electorate decides it should be censored on a whim of the majority. Free speech is easy if the message is one we all agree on.

Subby: Yes I realize that. But my stance is there is no need for the supreme court anyway, what the states are doing IS Constitutional. We will see I guess.

Man, this gets me pissed!

October 6, 2010 Comments off

Fred Waldron Phelps, Sr. (born November 13, 1929) is a disbarred lawyer, an anti-Christian hate speech minister who takes it upon himself, with his congregants, to drive out of their way and protest soldiers funerals. The signs used and sayings blurted out by these utterly disgusting individuals are “Fags doom nations”, “God hates fags”. Some actions and hate speech has been directed very specifically at individuals who have died. There are clear and narrow exceptions on free speech such as Cohen vs California.ref An important exception to keep in mind is fighting words, especially when directed to a particular person. It has to do with what the speech communicates and thus what is intended. The hate speech has CLEARLY been directed to specific individuals by Westboro Baptist Church. That is illegal.

Where are you gay community? Where are you true Biblical Christians? You both need to counter-protest each and every protest action that takes place. Protest their church right outside of it, LOUDLY! Go with your Bible and intelligently, calmly and with love point to their illogical position and utter lack of a Biblical basis. As grassroots activism shuts them up for the short-term, the courts through Snyder v. Phelps should and hopefully will shut them up permanently.ref1 There is no room within United States civil discourse and debate for intolerable, intimidating speech that is conductive to hate. Speech that is hate speech which is what the Westboro Baptist Church ultimately preach, has no connection in Biblical exegesis or an originalist perspective of the Constitution.ref2

Fred Phelps, Sr.