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Old 07-11-2010, 10:16 AM   #316
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Actually, the Klan had a relatively brief period of popularity in the 1860s -- formed in the South response to the Emancipation Proclamation and the aftermath of the Civil War -- but was virtually extinct by the 1870s, when the federal government began prosecuting them. The Klan didn't return to national prominence until after D.W. Griffith's "Birth of a Nation" in 1915, but by 1930 was once again defunct. The third wave of the Klan was created in response to the Civil Rights movement of the 1960s, as well as the Civil Rights Act. They're a great example of what I'm talking about -- a mob that operates outside the law because it doesn't agree with said laws.
It's no coincidence that the Klan disappeared in the 1870s at the same time that Reconstruction ended and the southern states were finally able to enshrine racism into law . The Klan had clout--at least during Reconstruction and the Civil Rights Movement--when blacks were making real progress in becoming full participants in our democratic system.

The democratic system HAS been abused in the past.

As I said, earlier both you and Irvine are correct. The real question you arguing is over whether the current issue of gay marriage is civil rights issue or not.
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Old 07-11-2010, 11:27 AM   #317
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the right to vote, and the right to a government that responds to that vote.


why do you think we have an electoral college?
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Old 07-11-2010, 03:30 PM   #318
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The real question you arguing is over whether the current issue of gay marriage is civil rights issue or not.


racial segregation was certainly very popular among southern voters well into the 1960s, and there were certainly many politicians who sailed into office on the back of championing continued segregation -- after all, this was the will of the people, and in a representative democracy, one as unique as ours, it is the will of the people that determines what the laws should be. as history has shown, laws are never overturned by a judiciary -- the will of the people! -- especially not popular laws, because the popularity of a law determines it's justness.

indeed, most Americans get the right to vote on the laws that are before Congress -- we voted on everything from TARP to the invasion of Iraq. and people are elected on the basis of doing what's popular. the will of the people is never wrong, because that alone creates reality.
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Old 07-12-2010, 12:19 PM   #319
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most Americans get the right to vote on the laws that are before Congress -- we voted on everything from TARP to the invasion of Iraq.
Sarcasm aside, both TARP and the invasion of Iraq have been and are core compaigning issues in recent elections. Politicians who were on the (real or perceived) wrong side of those issues will be voted in or out. So the people do indeed have a voice on those matters.

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the will of the people is never wrong, because that alone creates reality.
No one is saying that. However, our system of government is one that allows for the people to make their own corrections and adjustments. It's the fundamental system of self-governance. I would prefer to keep that power in the hands of the people... as opposed to, say, advocating that some vote(r)s are more equal than others. We've already been down that road.

But maybe I have more faith in the voters than you do.
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Old 07-12-2010, 01:18 PM   #320
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But maybe I have more faith in the voters than you do.

i agree. you appear to think that the will of the voters should trump the Constitution and the Bill of Rights and the decisions of the judiciary. you do, indeed, trust the people more than i do.

which is especially odd coming from a California voter.
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Old 07-12-2010, 03:14 PM   #321
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i agree. you appear to think that the will of the voters should trump the Constitution and the Bill of Rights and the decisions of the judiciary.
But we're not talking about a situation that has yet been found to trump the Constitution and the Bill of Rights and the decisions of the judiciary, are we?

Sean's right that there is an inherent tension between our two perspectives on government -- that tension between legal precedent and principles of self-governance. This tension has allowed the system to endure. Part of the genius of the Founding Fathers, I suppose...
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Old 07-12-2010, 03:38 PM   #322
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But we're not talking about a situation that has yet been found to trump the Constitution and the Bill of Rights and the decisions of the judiciary, are we?

we're talking about many situations, not only limited to California, from Prop 8 to Prop 187 to Brown vs. Board of Education to Dred Scott to the presently very popular Arizona 1170.

laws must be constitutional, and we elect people to make policy, we don't vote on policy itself. many laws have been challenged and found to be unconstitutional, regardless of their popularity or the will of the people.

i don't think there's a tension. i think you're being deliberately obtuse about the system and falling back on "founding fathers" and "trusting the people" cliches. -- which, notably, is the last remaining non-animus argument the NOM people have on the Prop 8 issue, as all other arguments were demolished by Olsen/Boies in Schwarzenagger vs Perry.

since we're talking about the FF, i'll offer some Thomas Jefferson:

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I am not an advocate for frequent changes in laws and constitutions. But laws and institutions must go hand in hand with the progress of the human mind. As that becomes more developed, more enlightened, as new discoveries are made, new truths discovered and manners and opinions change, with the change of circumstances, institutions must advance also to keep pace with the times. We might as well require a man to wear still the coat which fitted him when a boy as civilized society to remain ever under the regimen of their barbarous ancestors.
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Old 07-12-2010, 04:54 PM   #323
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I like Thomas Jefferson quotes too. Here's one:

"The will of the people is the only legitimate foundation of any government, and to protect its free expression should be our first object."

I also rather enjoy, "The basis of our government being the opinion of the people, the very first object should be to keep that right."

There is indeed a tension between principles of self-governance and representative government. At what point does the gap widen to the point where a government is no longer "of the people, by the people, and for the people"? For many, the last eight years illuminated just such a widening gap between the governors and the governed; they and we are now reaping the result.

Government ignores the will of the people at its peril. For, to repeat another quote from that anachronistic old Founding Father you mentioned, "I hold it, that a little rebellion, now and then, is a good thing, and as necessary in the political world as storms in the physical."
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Old 07-12-2010, 05:10 PM   #324
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when i was in high school, we voted to make all the kids with red hair wear signs that said: KICK ME, I'M A GINGER.

it was awesome.

i mean, some of them cried, but whatever. we voted. and they were only 5% of the population.
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Old 07-12-2010, 05:19 PM   #325
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Old 07-12-2010, 05:49 PM   #326
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Posted on Sun, Jul. 11, 2010
NAACP considers resolution decrying racist elements in tea-party movement

By JUDY L. THOMAS
The Kansas City Star

The National Association for the Advancement of Colored People will propose a resolution this week condemning racism within the tea party movement.

The resolution, scheduled for a vote as early as Tuesday by delegates attending the annual NAACP convention in Kansas City, calls upon “all people of good will to repudiate the racism of the Tea Parties, and to stand in opposition to its drive to push our country back to the pre-civil rights era.”

NAACP leaders said the resolution was necessary to make people aware of what they believe is a racist element within the tea party movement.

“I think a lot of people are not taking the tea party movement seriously, and we need to take it seriously,” said Anita Russell, head of the Kansas City chapter of the NAACP. “We need to realize it’s really not about limited government.”

Russell said she was “pretty certain” the resolution would pass.

Tea party leaders deny that the movement is racist and said the resolution is unfair.

“I just don’t see racism in the tea party movement,” said Brendan Steinhauser, director of campaigns for FreedomWorks, which organizes tea party groups. “Racism is something we’re absolutely opposed to.”

“The NAACP has more of a political agenda now, but I would hope that they would appreciate the fact that the tea party movement has a lot in common with the civil rights movement. I’m personally inspired by what the civil rights movement did, and I want them to know that.”

Among the charges lodged against the tea party in the resolution:

•Tea party supporters have engaged in “explicitly racist behavior” and “displayed signs and posters intended to degrade people of color generally and President Barack Obama specifically.”

•Tea party activists have used racial epithets, have verbally and physically abused black members of Congress and others, and have been charged with threatening public officials.

Tea party supporters also have a distorted view of race relations, the resolution says, citing poll data that found that 25 percent believe that the Obama administration’s policies favor blacks over whites, and 52 percent believe that “too much” has been made of the problems facing black people, compared with 28 percent of the general population.
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Old 07-12-2010, 05:55 PM   #327
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“I just don’t see racism in the tea party movement,” said Brendan Steinhauser, director of campaigns for FreedomWorks, which organizes tea party groups. “Racism is something we’re absolutely opposed to.”
I think these people scare me the most. The guys with the signs are scary but it's a given that you're going to have ignorant assholes in every group, party, or organization. But those that turn the blind eye enable this behaviour or secretly support it... these are the ones that scare me the most.
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Old 07-12-2010, 06:36 PM   #328
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when i was in high school, we voted to make all the kids with red hair wear signs that said: KICK ME, I'M A GINGER.

it was awesome.

i mean, some of them cried, but whatever. we voted. and they were only 5% of the population.
You, my friend, went to a fucked up high school.
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Old 07-12-2010, 06:56 PM   #329
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You, my friend, went to a fucked up high school.


you should try spending a day in the shoes of a Ginger.
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Old 07-12-2010, 06:58 PM   #330
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you should try spending a day in the shoes of a Ginger.
Hey, hey -- some of my best friends are Gingers.

On the lighter side:
Teabonics: The most ridiculous - and misspelled - tea party protest signs
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