Author Topic: Small Daily Acts of Political Discussion  (Read 22676 times)

A Definite Beta Guy

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Re: Small Daily Acts of Political Discussion
« Reply #50 on: September 21, 2017, 08:45:11 AM »
The racist implication is that everyone in the inner city is a thug, not that the term "thug" itself is racist, though. You can't drop n-bombs, ever, nor you can use any number of other racial epitaphs, ever.

The most often I see the word "thug" is in mystery and detective books, set in Chicago, where the mob is assumed to be almost exclusively Italian.

Midwest

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Re: Small Daily Acts of Political Discussion
« Reply #51 on: September 21, 2017, 08:49:34 AM »
Poundwise:

People on this website have been good about respectful debate.  Personally I think that's one of it's strengths.  If that thread, and others, are going to become an echo chamber where dissenting viewpoints are vilified, I think that's an issue.  I think that's exactly what's going on with the outrage about this comment.

Regarding BLM.  My viewpoint and mine alone, sometimes BLM is justified in it's protests and sometimes it's not.  Philandro Castle and Samuel Dubose for example, completely understand the outrage.  Some of the other protests, I thought the police were justified and the outrage was misplaced.

I expect all protestors to be non-violent (unless attacked) and respect property rights.

To add - https://www.yahoo.com/news/new-riots-police-shooting-raise-question-st-louis-210357623.html

There are a whole bunch of white people protesting in these pictures.  I  wouldn't presume that all the assholes trashing the place are black.
« Last Edit: September 21, 2017, 08:56:48 AM by Midwest »

iris lily

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Re: Small Daily Acts of Political Discussion
« Reply #52 on: September 21, 2017, 11:02:38 AM »

....That said, a better use of our time might be to ask why iris lily doesn't support the protests, and maybe go beyond into why people find it necessary to oppose and disparage BLM.

Your loaded question about why iris "doesnt support the protests" is silly. You might as well ask me when I stopped beating my wife, those questions assume I dont "support the protests" and I have beat my wife in the past. Only I dont  have a wife, but whatever.

Iris doesnt support rioting which specifically means breaking windows, vandalizing buildings and autos, stealing and looting, and injuring  other people whether with projectiles or hands-on altercations.

I draw a distinction between lawful protesting and unlawful actions of rioting.Are you able to see that difference?

And out of curiosity, what words would you find appropriate to describe the thugs who are rioting?




« Last Edit: September 21, 2017, 11:12:35 AM by iris lily »

iris lily

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Re: Small Daily Acts of Political Discussion
« Reply #53 on: September 21, 2017, 11:33:38 AM »
Poundwise:

People on this website have been good about respectful debate.  Personally I think that's one of it's strengths.  If that thread, and others, are going to become an echo chamber where dissenting viewpoints are vilified, I think that's an issue.  I think that's exactly what's going on with the outrage about this comment.

Regarding BLM.  My viewpoint and mine alone, sometimes BLM is justified in it's protests and sometimes it's not.  Philandro Castle and Samuel Dubose for example, completely understand the outrage.  Some of the other protests, I thought the police were justified and the outrage was misplaced.

I expect all protestors to be non-violent (unless attacked) and respect property rights.

To add - https://www.yahoo.com/news/new-riots-police-shooting-raise-question-st-louis-210357623.html

There are a whole bunch of white people protesting in these pictures.  I  wouldn't presume that all the assholes trashing the place are black.

I agree with you that echo chambers are  not good for our societal discourse.

Part of the unhappiness on the other thread, I am pretty sure, is that posters there assume all are in accord. That surprises me now. At first, I thought that thread was sincerely meant for  Small Daily Acts  of Political Resistence and the thread really *was* ..."For those who feel overwhelmed by how much fighting needs to be done...small actions.... An email sent, a petition signed, maybe a phone call made." I am kinda literal in things, I,will admit,  a bit "on the spectrum" I suppose, haha.

But it is a very narrowly focused thread if it is only intended for national level politics (I would argue that a great deal affectng us takes place at a more local political level) and it is even MORE limited if the viewpoint is only leftie, and a specific flavor of left at that.

Personally, I think that is not only a bad goal as mentioned with the echo chamber thing, it is impractical. It is impractical because one hive  mind isnt gonna work in our large, diverse country. For instance, that other thread seems to me to be Hillaryland. There were some pretty strong sentiments voiced against Bernie either there or elsewhere by participants of the thread. I remember because that surprised me, I was assuming that everyone  kinda liked Bernie even if he wasnt viewed as being electable, didnt think he was viewed as a devil from the left. But I digress.

Finally, I intensely dislike the assumption that "when I start a thread, I control the thoughts in it, and the expression of those thoughts." Other than for a Journal thread which I will respect for controlled content be ause Journals are very personal, it is *bullshit* to think one person controls the content of this public square, the MMM boards. You put up a thread, you takes what you get in responses.
« Last Edit: September 21, 2017, 11:46:19 AM by iris lily »

Poundwise

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Re: Small Daily Acts of Political Discussion
« Reply #54 on: September 21, 2017, 11:59:38 AM »



....That said, a better use of our time might be to ask why iris lily doesn't support the protests, and maybe go beyond into why people find it necessary to oppose and disparage BLM.

Your loaded question about why iris "doesnt support the protests" is silly. You might as well ask me when I stopped beating my wife, those questions assume I dont "support the protests" and I have beat my wife in the past. Only I dont  have a wife, but whatever.

Iris doesnt support rioting which specifically means breaking windows, vandalizing buildings and autos, stealing and looting, and injuring  other people whether with projectiles or hands-on altercations.

I based my opinion that you did not support the entire protests based on the following quote:
Every day since last Friday I am participating in political action  by *not* marching in St. Louis's daily race protests (mostly peaceful) as well as the rioting performed at night. Avoidance of all is a statement, wondering if anyone notices, haha.
[I added the bolds]

I read your words to mean that you did not support the protests whether or not they were peaceful.  So what you are now saying is that you DID support the protests, but what you didn't like is they weren't peaceful?

Quote
I draw a distinction between lawful protesting and unlawful actions of rioting.Are you able to see that difference?
Yes. 

Clarify for us, then. You DO support the position that a policeman was not held sufficiently accountable for the killing of a Black American man, and that the circumstances under which this death occurred were not sufficiently investigated?

Midwest

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Re: Small Daily Acts of Political Discussion
« Reply #55 on: September 21, 2017, 12:09:11 PM »
Poundwise:

People on this website have been good about respectful debate.  Personally I think that's one of it's strengths.  If that thread, and others, are going to become an echo chamber where dissenting viewpoints are vilified, I think that's an issue.  I think that's exactly what's going on with the outrage about this comment.

Regarding BLM.  My viewpoint and mine alone, sometimes BLM is justified in it's protests and sometimes it's not.  Philandro Castle and Samuel Dubose for example, completely understand the outrage.  Some of the other protests, I thought the police were justified and the outrage was misplaced.

I expect all protestors to be non-violent (unless attacked) and respect property rights.

To add - https://www.yahoo.com/news/new-riots-police-shooting-raise-question-st-louis-210357623.html

There are a whole bunch of white people protesting in these pictures.  I  wouldn't presume that all the assholes trashing the place are black.

I agree with you that echo chambers are  not good for our societal discourse.

Part of the unhappiness on the other thread, I am pretty sure, is that posters there assume all are in accord. That surprises me now. At first, I thought that thread was sincerely meant for  Small Daily Acts  of Political Resistence and the thread really *was* ..."For those who feel overwhelmed by how much fighting needs to be done...small actions.... An email sent, a petition signed, maybe a phone call made." I am kinda literal in things, I,will admit,  a bit "on the spectrum" I suppose, haha.

But it is a very narrowly focused thread if it is only intended for national level politics (I would argue that a great deal affectng us takes place at a more local political level) and it is even MORE limited if the viewpoint is only leftie, and a specific flavor of left at that.

Personally, I think that is not only a bad goal as mentioned with the echo chamber thing, it is impractical. It is impractical because one hive  mind isnt gonna work in our large, diverse country. For instance, that other thread seems to me to be Hillaryland. There were some pretty strong sentiments voiced against Bernie either there or elsewhere by participants of the thread. I remember because that surprised me, I was assuming that everyone  kinda liked Bernie even if he wasnt viewed as being electable, didnt think he was viewed as a devil from the left. But I digress.

Finally, I intensely dislike the assumption that "when I start a thread, I control the thoughts in it, and the expression of those thoughts." Other than for a Journal thread which I will respect for controlled content be ause Journals are very personal, it is *bullshit* to think one person controls the content of this public square, the MMM boards. You put up a thread, you takes what you get in responses.

I haven't followed closely enough to comment on the national level piece, but other than that, I completely agree.

Rationale discussion is healthy and I enjoy learning about different viewpoints.  Sometimes I even change my mind.  On the other hand, vilifying and discrediting anyone with dissenting opinion is not helpful.

If the democrats would like 8 years of Trump and republican congress, they should continue with that type of behavior.  One of the reasons we have Trump is that Hillary, was, and continues to be truly awful candidate.  Her recent comments have reminded me why she lost.

On a more upbeat note, I think some of the Democratic leadership might actually understand they have a problem.  Pelosi and Schumer trying to work with Trump on the immigration bill was a positive step. 

Midwest

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Re: Small Daily Acts of Political Discussion
« Reply #56 on: September 21, 2017, 12:13:59 PM »


Clarify for us, then. You DO support the position that a policeman was not held sufficiently accountable for the killing of a Black American man, and that the circumstances under which this death occurred were not sufficiently investigated?

A cop killed a heroin dealer who fled.  There is some dispute about whether the dealer had a gun.  The cop was then charged and acquitted.  What more should have happened?  How was the investigation insufficient?

Obviously the prosecutor thought there was something there or they wouldn't have charged, but what more should have been done?

To add - There are situations where the judge/jury gets it wrong.  I cited 2 examples above, I'm just not sure this was one of them.  BLM people are welcome to peacefully protest, but we don't have to agree with them every single time.  From my comments above, sometimes I think they are right.

Also - I'm open to being wrong about this particular case as well.  Those questions above are not rhetorical.
« Last Edit: September 21, 2017, 12:31:12 PM by Midwest »

A Definite Beta Guy

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Re: Small Daily Acts of Political Discussion
« Reply #57 on: September 21, 2017, 12:32:49 PM »
Iris:

Quote
But it is a very narrowly focused thread if it is only intended for national level politics (I would argue that a great deal affectng us takes place at a more local political level) and it is even MORE limited if the viewpoint is only leftie, and a specific flavor of left at that.

I can't speak for the OP, but "Resist" was the specific call to action among left-wing groups in response to the Trump election. "Resistance" in the thread title is probably a good indication of what you're going to see in the thread.

Midwest

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Re: Small Daily Acts of Political Discussion
« Reply #58 on: September 21, 2017, 01:05:09 PM »
Iris:

Quote
But it is a very narrowly focused thread if it is only intended for national level politics (I would argue that a great deal affectng us takes place at a more local political level) and it is even MORE limited if the viewpoint is only leftie, and a specific flavor of left at that.

I can't speak for the OP, but "Resist" was the specific call to action among left-wing groups in response to the Trump election. "Resistance" in the thread title is probably a good indication of what you're going to see in the thread.

Yes, and we had this conversation before. A big focus has been on national actions because this board is dispersed geographically. I can't tell people to go protest the MTA at city hall because nobody else lives in NYC. I am doing that kind of organizing elsewhere, and resources have been provided in the thread for people to find local groups to join. Many people are getting more engaged at the state and local level and reporting their actions.

As well, I have clarified that the thread was for people resisting the Trump and Republican agenda. Does not need to be Hillary voters or even Democrats, just people unhappy with the current administration.

It's public, it's the internet, anyone can comment, sure. I haven't asked you to stop posting your actions/non-actions, for example. But I still try to keep things on topic (action oriented) and civil.

It doesn't seem very civil to those who dare to dissent.  Nitpicking about language used and complaints about a minor Hillary comment are unwelcoming.  This is a great board, but it's not democratic underground.
« Last Edit: September 21, 2017, 01:10:53 PM by Midwest »

Poundwise

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Re: Small Daily Acts of Political Discussion
« Reply #59 on: September 21, 2017, 01:07:58 PM »
Poundwise:

People on this website have been good about respectful debate.  Personally I think that's one of it's strengths.  If that thread, and others, are going to become an echo chamber where dissenting viewpoints are vilified, I think that's an issue.  I think that's exactly what's going on with the outrage about this comment.

Fully agree about respectful debate and echo chambers.

 But isn't it a little disingenuous to pretend that "thug" has not been used, in recent years, to stereotype Black men? Maybe you and Beta Guy missed it, but there was a big fuss about it two years ago; when it was being used for all sorts of young Black males.
http://www.ebony.com/news-views/thug-is-the-new-n-word-504
Yes, even Obama used it as I'm sure some were about to point out.  [But Obama hasn't always been helpful wrt race, think about his words on absent black fathers then read http://gawker.com/the-men-who-left-were-white-1562473547]

Anyway, "thug", at least to me, has the implication that the basis for the rioting was criminality or the pursuit of mercenary gain, or the joy of destruction.  The implication is that there were groups of criminals profiting from mayhem to loot and intimidate, which was not the impression I got from my readings of the news (CSmonitor, BBC, http://www.stltoday.com/news/local/crime-and-courts/protests-turn-violent-in-delmar-loop-late-saturday-second-night/article_d93c9b0b-3958-5bba-a00b-bc971b2e9f4a.html).

Anger, frustration, and impotence seemed to be the motivations, although of course we can't know why each person rioted.

Quote
I expect all protestors to be non-violent (unless attacked) and respect property rights.
Yes, and being angry or frustrated does not make rioting or vandalism right.  No disagreement here. And I would even disagree with those who feel that violence is the best response to tyranny.

Quote
To add - https://www.yahoo.com/news/new-riots-police-shooting-raise-question-st-louis-210357623.html

There are a whole bunch of white people protesting in these pictures.  I  wouldn't presume that all the assholes trashing the place are black.
Okay, I can only draw conclusions on the photos I have seen, not what you or Iris lily had seen before the comment.

In response to Iris,
Quote
And out of curiosity, what words would you find appropriate to describe the thugs who are rioting?
Rioters.

Iris, you did draw a distinction between the "mostly peaceful" protesters and the rioting thugs in your original post.  So I didn't automatically think you were being racist. But I fail to see how you could take issue with my interpretation of the statement you were making.  Maybe by the time I finish writing this, you'll have responded to my questions in my last post.

Can we agree, giving the name of "thugs" to a group of people of color who are not career criminals or paid to commit violence, is not a good idea?

Midwest

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Re: Small Daily Acts of Political Discussion
« Reply #60 on: September 21, 2017, 01:27:03 PM »

Poundwise:

People on this website have been good about respectful debate.  Personally I think that's one of it's strengths.  If that thread, and others, are going to become an echo chamber where dissenting viewpoints are vilified, I think that's an issue.  I think that's exactly what's going on with the outrage about this comment.

Fully agree about respectful debate and echo chambers.

 But isn't it a little disingenuous to pretend that "thug" has not been used, in recent years, to stereotype Black men? Maybe you and Beta Guy missed it, but there was a big fuss about it two years ago; when it was being used for all sorts of young Black males.
http://www.ebony.com/news-views/thug-is-the-new-n-word-504
Yes, even Obama used it as I'm sure some were about to point out.  [But Obama hasn't always been helpful wrt race, think about his words on absent black fathers then read http://gawker.com/the-men-who-left-were-white-1562473547]

Anyway, "thug", at least to me, has the implication that the basis for the rioting was criminality or the pursuit of mercenary gain, or the joy of destruction.  The implication is that there were groups of criminals profiting from mayhem to loot and intimidate, which was not the impression I got from my readings of the news (CSmonitor, BBC, http://www.stltoday.com/news/local/crime-and-courts/protests-turn-violent-in-delmar-loop-late-saturday-second-night/article_d93c9b0b-3958-5bba-a00b-bc971b2e9f4a.html).

Anger, frustration, and impotence seemed to be the motivations, although of course we can't know why each person rioted.


I'm aware there has been some debate about the term thug.  If someone is applying that term to you simply because of your race, I think it's racist.  If that term were being applied to peaceful black protesters , I could argue that is racist as well.  It's being used in that context in attempt to discredit peaceful protesters.

On the other hand, if they are applying it to you because you are destroying property and intimidating others, you are a thug.  This has nothing to do with race and everything to do with behavior.  The term thug has recently been applied (accurately in most cases) to anti-fa and nazi's who seem overwhelmingly white to me. 

Similar to peaceful black protesters being called thugs in an attempt to discredit by the right, the term racist is thrown about by some on the left in an attempt to discredit views they don't agree with.  The accusation of racism is a powerful concept in our current society.  We sure be sure it's accurate before making that accusation.
« Last Edit: September 21, 2017, 01:44:37 PM by Midwest »

A Definite Beta Guy

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Re: Small Daily Acts of Political Discussion
« Reply #61 on: September 21, 2017, 01:58:08 PM »
I read through some of those discussions this morning, but yes I missed it a few years ago. I don't know if it's being unfairly used to stigmatize any particular racial group. I just know that it's used against all sorts of people, regardless of skin color. You can pull up examples quite easily of "thug" referring to any number of dictators or militant groups. Arguments that such words should automatically be considered racial slurs are unconvincing to me.

More concerning to me is the overall context or argument, which I think you mentioned something similar to above. ex, The following two statements are equally disturbing to me:
Quote
I don't like AA women because they are all welfare queens
Quote
I don't like AA women because they scam social insurance programs

The idea is the same, even if the specific term "welfare queen" is dropped. So if someone posted and asked for the term "welfare queen" to be removed, I'd scratch my head.

These two statements read the same to me, too:
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It really sucks that we have some welfare queens scamming our social insurance program.
Quote
It really sucks we have people scamming our social insurance programs.

Same thing applies, I don't see much value in removing the term "welfare queen" from the first. I'll grant that WQ is pretty racially charged, but that's not the same as a racial slur (IMO). Dropping n-bombs in any of the above statements is a much different flavor of statement.

Just my thoughts.

SoundFuture

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Re: Small Daily Acts of Political Discussion
« Reply #62 on: September 21, 2017, 02:04:02 PM »
The accusation of racism is a powerful concept in our current society.  We sure be sure it's accurate before making that accusation.

Very true, compounded by the fact that racism is very much ingrained in our society, it's very hard to separate it from other things whether intended or not intended.  I think the usage of the word "thug" in its context in this thread originally was fine, but I also understand why someone would take offense.  When a seemingly honest word has been used to discredit and dehumanize, it has a certain power to unnerve people even when used factually and without obvious prejudice.  A similar term would be illegal immigrant. There's nothing wrong with the factual meaning of the term, but in the last ten years or so it has been used as an insult to a particular group of people within certain ranks and files.  It makes people far more sensitive to its use, because now they have to question the underlying motivations of the person using it to determine its real meaning.  The rest of us are now forced to decide whether to use undocumented or illegal as a descriptor, when they are both equally factually correct.  In some circles the use of a word that can be offensive is uncouth, while others use it intentionally to be offensive, and others still use it within the bounds of its factual meaning.  Personally I use either depending upon the situation and who I'm interacting with, and these days I'm more likely to use the term "undocumented" just to simplify the interchange so I do not have to navigate around perceived and unintended offenses.

I will say I have a tendency to give anyone on this forum the benefit of the doubt unless it's otherwise obvious that their motivation is a bad one.  Presumed goodwill is one of the strongest basis' for cooperation and meaningful dialogue. Ill willed people have a tendency of eventually uncovering their own motivations without anyone else's help.
 

Poundwise

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Re: Small Daily Acts of Political Discussion
« Reply #63 on: September 21, 2017, 02:10:23 PM »

Clarify for us, then. You DO support the position that a policeman was not held sufficiently accountable for the killing of a Black American man, and that the circumstances under which this death occurred were not sufficiently investigated?

A cop killed a heroin dealer who fled.  There is some dispute about whether the dealer had a gun.  The cop was then charged and acquitted.  What more should have happened?  How was the investigation insufficient?

Obviously the prosecutor thought there was something there or they wouldn't have charged, but what more should have been done?

To add - There are situations where the judge/jury gets it wrong.  I cited 2 examples above, I'm just not sure this was one of them.  BLM people are welcome to peacefully protest, but we don't have to agree with them every single time.  From my comments above, sometimes I think they are right.

Also - I'm open to being wrong about this particular case as well.  Those questions above are not rhetorical.
I did not follow the Anthony Lamar Smith case closely, so I do not have a defensible opinion on whether or not justice was served.  My original questions were to Iris, who did not like the interpretation I took of her stance. I stated what I thought the protesters were protesting, for clarity.

But let's look at the broader question... how justifiable is the St. Louis protest in general?

As you may have read, only the police officer Stockley's DNA was found on a gun found in Smith's vehicle.  There are lot of other details, such as testimony from another policeman that he did not see the gun, and a dashboard cam that was turned off, according to the following article (which I am not sure is reliable). Anyway, there were certainly enough doubt and rumors to inflame those willing to believe them.   The fact that Stockley was the only St. Louis police officer to have been charged in years despite multiple police shootings in the wake of Ferguson,  must also be contributing to the frustration, as well as the accumulation of indignities that poor people of color go through at the hands of authority.

http://www.slate.com/blogs/the_slatest/2017/09/15/this_judge_s_excuses_for_acquitting_jason_stockley_of_murder_are_pathetic.html

I am, obviously, a new convert to the BLM camp.  For many years I read about perps being arrested and shot, with a comfy feeling that our boys in blue were on the job and keeping us safe. I am dismayed at the extent to which unjustified police violence and bias have been uncovered in recent years. I would hope that this is a case where reporting has improved, not increasing bias or brutality on the part of police, and I do see how police scared for their safety would prefer to shoot first and ask questions later, but in too many cases we have seen a callous attitude towards human lives and a tendency to make assumptions about the criminality of people of color.

Poundwise

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Re: Small Daily Acts of Political Discussion
« Reply #64 on: September 21, 2017, 02:44:37 PM »
Beta Guy, here's a case where context makes the slur.

Me to my 3 year old jumping around the room: What a monkey! (implication: loving)

Me about a bunch of white teens hanging around the convenience store: What a bunch of monkeys! (implication: disapproving)

Me about a bunch of black teens hanging around the convenience store: What a bunch of monkeys! (implication: racism)

Lord knows that the PC police can be annoying.  I have a son who was upset that his favorite Pepe the Frog was taken over by the white supremacists, so he had to stop drawing it on his notebooks.  It is annoying when things that were okay are no longer okay, in fact I will keep making the OK sign to mean okay even if it now means WP for White Power. You all want to keep using the word thug for plug-uglies. Fine, but it helps  to choose your words carefully in the context of a politically charged issue if you don't want to be misunderstood.

Midwest

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Re: Small Daily Acts of Political Discussion
« Reply #65 on: September 21, 2017, 03:04:20 PM »

I did not follow the Anthony Lamar Smith case closely, so I do not have a defensible opinion on whether or not justice was served.  My original questions were to Iris, who did not like the interpretation I took of her stance. I stated what I thought the protesters were protesting, for clarity.

But let's look at the broader question... how justifiable is the St. Louis protest in general?

I agree that driving while black is a real phenomenon and blacks are viewed with more suspicion by law enforcement.  I think this cuts across socio-economic lines and it's a real issue. 

As far a protesting this specific instance, I'm not sure it was justified.  Obviously, however, I support their right to protest peacefully whether I agree or not.

If I were advising BLM, however, i would suggest they focus on clear cut cases rather than the debatable ones.  It hurts their credibility when every time  a white cop shoots a black person BLM views it as an injustice.


As you may have read, only the police officer Stockley's DNA was found on a gun found in Smith's vehicle.  There are lot of other details, such as testimony from another policeman that he did not see the gun, and a dashboard cam that was turned off, according to the following article (which I am not sure is reliable). Anyway, there were certainly enough doubt and rumors to inflame those willing to believe them.   The fact that Stockley was the only St. Louis police officer to have been charged in years despite multiple police shootings in the wake of Ferguson,  must also be contributing to the frustration, as well as the accumulation of indignities that poor people of color go through at the hands of authority.

http://www.slate.com/blogs/the_slatest/2017/09/15/this_judge_s_excuses_for_acquitting_jason_stockley_of_murder_are_pathetic.html

I am, obviously, a new convert to the BLM camp.  For many years I read about perps being arrested and shot, with a comfy feeling that our boys in blue were on the job and keeping us safe. I am dismayed at the extent to which unjustified police violence and bias have been uncovered in recent years. I would hope that this is a case where reporting has improved, not increasing bias or brutality on the part of police, and I do see how police scared for their safety would prefer to shoot first and ask questions later, but in too many cases we have seen a callous attitude towards human lives and a tendency to make assumptions about the criminality of people of color.

Per the article, the person killed, Smith, was involved in a suspected heroin deal.  When the officers approached he fled and clipped the officer with his car.  During the ensuing chase he hit the police car at least 2x. 

I think given those circumstances, black, green or white, you have a pretty good chance of getting killed by the cops.  I'm troubled that the cops turned their camera off and don't know how to make sense of the DNA, but engaging in a vehicle chase with the police is generally not conducive to a long life whatever your color.

If BLM wants to protest, there are much better cases of police abuse than this one.


Midwest

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Re: Small Daily Acts of Political Discussion
« Reply #66 on: September 21, 2017, 03:23:55 PM »

A similar term would be illegal immigrant. There's nothing wrong with the factual meaning of the term, but in the last ten years or so it has been used as an insult to a particular group of people within certain ranks and files.  It makes people far more sensitive to its use, because now they have to question the underlying motivations of the person using it to determine its real meaning.  The rest of us are now forced to decide whether to use undocumented or illegal as a descriptor, when they are both equally factually correct. 

I think your tendency to giving people here the benefit of the doubt is a good one.  I attempt to do that as well.

On the topic of the term "illegal immigrant," I think many of the objections are less about the insult and more about normalizing the behavior.  Some on the far left are advocating for amnesty.  Calling those in this country illegally undocumented legitimizes their situation.

Similarly, there are those that are criticizing law enforcement in Florida for arresting looters stealing clothes and electronics during the hurricane.  I've heard accusations of racism in that arena as well.

Some in society are trying to excuse bad behavior by attacking the language used in calling out the bad actors.  I felt the attacks in the other thread on at least 2 posters were an attempt to discredit along those lines.
« Last Edit: September 21, 2017, 03:25:47 PM by Midwest »

RidetheRain

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Re: Small Daily Acts of Political Discussion
« Reply #67 on: September 21, 2017, 03:27:54 PM »
If BLM wants to protest, there are much better cases of police abuse than this one.

I agree. It's hard to say you agree with a group that protests so many questionable cases. I agree with the general premise that police need to be less hasty with the guns, but they do still have a very dangerous job. Sometimes they are justified to be pulling out their gun. I remember one where a man continued attacking after being tased. Immediately protesting implies that the job isn't dangerous or that cops shouldn't keep themselves safe which isn't something I agree with at all. That said, it's not just the guns and the arrests that cops need to cool it on. My interactions (as a young, white woman who is "safe") with cops recently have been very negative. I expect politeness bare minimum from them and all too often that is not the case. I wish BLM would point to that type of problem too. The underlying issue is that cops aren't viewing the public positively in a very general way and racism and socio-economic effects are causing this to become a "black" issue rather than an "everyone" issue.

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Re: Small Daily Acts of Political Discussion
« Reply #68 on: September 21, 2017, 03:54:59 PM »

Similarly, there are those that are criticizing law enforcement in Florida for arresting looters stealing clothes and electronics during the hurricane.  I've heard accusations of racism in that arena as well.

Some in society are trying to excuse bad behavior by attacking the language used in calling out the bad actors.  I felt the attacks in the other thread on at least 2 posters were an attempt to discredit along those lines.

I haven't heard those accusations in the case of FL, but I don't doubt they have happened.

The rioting that I have heard of in St. Louis involved broken windows, rocks and water bottles thrown at police, and trash cans pushed over. The great majority of protesters by far were peaceful and organizers pleaded many times to their followers to stay peaceful.

I disagree that madgeylou was trying to excuse the bad behavior. I think that's reading even more into her words than the original accusation of racism read into iris lily's words.

I do agree that BLM has had better points of focus than the drug dealer Smith. I guess it depends whether you believe the gun was planted or not. We'll probably never know.
« Last Edit: September 21, 2017, 03:57:08 PM by Poundwise »

Midwest

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Re: Small Daily Acts of Political Discussion
« Reply #69 on: September 21, 2017, 03:58:18 PM »

Similarly, there are those that are criticizing law enforcement in Florida for arresting looters stealing clothes and electronics during the hurricane.  I've heard accusations of racism in that arena as well.

Some in society are trying to excuse bad behavior by attacking the language used in calling out the bad actors.  I felt the attacks in the other thread on at least 2 posters were an attempt to discredit along those lines.

I haven't heard those accusations in the case of FL, but I don't doubt they have happened.

The rioting that I have heard of in St. Louis involved broken windows, rocks and water bottles thrown at police, and trash cans pushed over. The great majority of protesters by far were peaceful and organizers pleaded many times to their followers to stay peaceful.

I disagree that madgeylou was trying to excuse the bad behavior. I think that's reading even more into her words than the original accusation of racism read into iris lily's words.

Sorry if I wasn't clear - I felt posters in the other thread we attempting to discredit dissenting opinions.  Note I said posters.  It was more than just one person.

iris lily

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Re: Small Daily Acts of Political Discussion
« Reply #70 on: September 21, 2017, 07:09:52 PM »



....That said, a better use of our time might be to ask why iris lily doesn't support the protests, and maybe go beyond into why people find it necessary to oppose and disparage BLM.

Your loaded question about why iris "doesnt support the protests" is silly. You might as well ask me when I stopped beating my wife, those questions assume I dont "support the protests" and I have beat my wife in the past. Only I dont  have a wife, but whatever.

Iris doesnt support rioting which specifically means breaking windows, vandalizing buildings and autos, stealing and looting, and injuring  other people whether with projectiles or hands-on altercations.

I based my opinion that you did not support the entire protests based on the following quote:
Every day since last Friday I am participating in political action  by *not* marching in St. Louis's daily race protests (mostly peaceful) as well as the rioting performed at night. Avoidance of all is a statement, wondering if anyone notices, haha.
[I added the bolds]

I read your words to mean that you did not support the protests whether or not they were peaceful.  So what you are now saying is that you DID support the protests, but what you didn't like is they weren't peaceful?

Quote
I draw a distinction between lawful protesting and unlawful actions of rioting.Are you able to see that difference?
Yes. 

Clarify for us, then. You DO support the position that a policeman was not held sufficiently accountable for the killing of a Black American man, and that the circumstances under which this death occurred were not sufficiently investigated?

Ah, ok, I understand  why you said what you said.

Here, I meant that I was not out marching. I am not carrying  placards.  I DO
 of course support peaceful protest in the abstract, as does any citizen who finds our constitutional freedoms important. That is a no brainer.

More specifically, I support African-Americans and anyone else in legally protesting institutional racism, which is what much of this protesting  is about.

I do not believe that the Stokley verdict was wrong, so in that regard I do not "support protesting" where "support" here simply means my thinky thoughts.

I think there was enough hinky stuff going on in the  Stokely case to bring charges, but I also think the prosecuting attorney was influenced by Ferguson. She had, prior to Ferguson refused to charge Stokely, but after Ferguson found "new evidence" and charged him. I still do not know what The "new evidence" is, but I really like the prosecuting attorney and think that she did not normally play the race politics endemic to St. Louis. So I trusted that when she brought charges against Stokely, it was worth a trial.

 As for the gun that contained DNA of the policeman but not of the dead heroin dealer, that is not unusual. It is not unusual for a gun to be free of DNA. The same prosecutor issued that declaration in another cop shooting case, one I am more familiar with because it is geographically in my immediate area. So, if you base your opinion on the DNA on the gun you need to learn more about that.

The St. louis prosecutor's office that brought charges against Officer Stockley says in this report  "Lab analysts and experts confirm that it is rare to retrieve useable fingerprints or dna from a weapon..."


http://www.stltoday.com/st-louis-circuit-attorney-report-on-vonderrit-myers-shooting/pdf_f0ddc309-56cf-501f-92a3-6946648a8d1d.html     Page 16

As the judge said in his verdict, it would be an anomoly for a dealer of heroin to NOT have a gun in his car. That isnt evidence, of course, but  it expresses a truth about living here in St. louis.
« Last Edit: September 22, 2017, 08:32:51 AM by iris lily »

iris lily

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Re: Small Daily Acts of Political Discussion
« Reply #71 on: September 21, 2017, 08:15:09 PM »
Iris:

Quote
But it is a very narrowly focused thread if it is only intended for national level politics (I would argue that a great deal affectng us takes place at a more local political level) and it is even MORE limited if the viewpoint is only leftie, and a specific flavor of left at that.

I can't speak for the OP, but "Resist" was the specific call to action among left-wing groups in response to the Trump election. "Resistance" in the thread title is probably a good indication of what you're going to see in the thread.

Yes, and we had this conversation before. A big focus has been on national actions because this board is dispersed geographically. I can't tell people to go protest the MTA at city hall because nobody else lives in NYC. I am doing that kind of organizing elsewhere, and resources have been provided in the thread for people to find local groups to join. Many people are getting more engaged at the state and local level and reporting their actions.

As well, I have clarified that the thread was for people resisting the Trump and Republican agenda. Does not need to be Hillary voters or even Democrats, just people unhappy with the current administration.

It's public, it's the internet, anyone can comment, sure. I haven't asked you to stop posting your actions/non-actions, for example. But I still try to keep things on topic (action oriented) and civil.

There is no monolithic  Republican, there is no single Republican  agenda. That is causing them more than a little grief.




iris lily

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Re: Small Daily Acts of Political Discussion
« Reply #72 on: September 21, 2017, 09:25:21 PM »
Iris:

Quote
But it is a very narrowly focused thread if it is only intended for national level politics (I would argue that a great deal affectng us takes place at a more local political level) and it is even MORE limited if the viewpoint is only leftie, and a specific flavor of left at that.

I can't speak for the OP, but "Resist" was the specific call to action among left-wing groups in response to the Trump election. "Resistance" in the thread title is probably a good indication of what you're going to see in the thread.

I didnt know that the call to "Resist"  went out from leftie hdqtrs because I dont follow those directives.

I do however get near weekly missives from Rand Paul about Resisting, including his sit-in last week to end the overseas wars. That is old style resisting. Lefties do not own the concept.

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Re: Small Daily Acts of Political Discussion
« Reply #73 on: September 22, 2017, 07:59:03 AM »
I think your tendency to giving people here the benefit of the doubt is a good one.  I attempt to do that as well.

On the topic of the term "illegal immigrant," I think many of the objections are less about the insult and more about normalizing the behavior.  Some on the far left are advocating for amnesty.  Calling those in this country illegally undocumented legitimizes their situation.


I am glad you agree. I think if you start with bad motivations or distrust, you'll only get more distrust. Choosing to give people, their point of view, and their reasons for it a genuine opportunity before you agree or disagree is important to meaningful dialogue.

I think something we often discount is the diaspora in society. Your second point in the quote above is a great example of it as I was, despite being rather broad in my original statement, unable to adequately name all of the aspects of just one issue.  You would think I would remember that as a very leftist professor once docked points in a college paper of mine for not using the term "undocumented" in place of "illegal" despite it having absolutely nothing to do with what the paper was about.

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Re: Small Daily Acts of Political Discussion
« Reply #74 on: September 22, 2017, 09:02:42 AM »
I was going to post my draft that I had written up, but that moment has passed. I suppose I can sum up the part that wasn't handled by the discussion that ensued by saying that I think one of the best ways to ensure a decent dialogue instead of shutting down a conversation would be to acknowledge the fact when it comes to things that aren't cut and dry (such as a word that may be perceived as a racial epithets), it is our own perception of the word that was used. Stating opinions as absolute fact is a pretty certain way to ensure that very little of value happens. Owning our opinions removes all of that sense of attacking, and for me at least, creates a level of respect for the self awareness of the speaker. It also makes sure that conversation stays focused on the issues.

I did want to take another moment to thank everyone who has participated in this. It's been a damn good discussion, and just proves again how awesome you all are. Iris, thanks for popping in too.



What Midwest said brought up an interesting thought on how one views things.

Calling those in this country illegally undocumented legitimizes their situation.

If there is a law that one doesn't agree with, is normalizing and legitimizing the situation that is a result of that law productive, or not?

Personally, I'm of the opinion that legitimizing a non-legitimate situation has the effect of making people forget that the situation isn't legitimate, and therefore reduces the urge to actually fix it. It's kind of like this thing I heard once (I don't know if it's a saying or what). If there is a bad law on the books, the best way to get it addressed is to enforce it.

What think you?

Poundwise

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Re: Small Daily Acts of Political Discussion
« Reply #75 on: September 22, 2017, 09:09:20 AM »

Ah, ok, I understand  why you said what you said.

Here, I meant that I was not out marching. I am not carrying  placards.  I DO
 of course support peaceful protest in the abstract, as does any citizen who finds our constitutional freedoms important. That is a no brainer.

More specifically, I support African-Americans and anyone else in legally protesting institutional racism, which is what much of this protesting  is about.

I do not believe that the Stokley verdict was wrong, so in that regard I do not "support protesting" where "support" here simply means my thinky thoughts.

I think there was enough hinky stuff going on in the  Stokely case to bring charges, but I also think the prosecuting attorney was influenced by Ferguson. She had, prior to Ferguson refused to charge Stokely, but after Ferguson found "new evidence" and charged him. I still do not know what The "new evidence" is, but I really like the prosecuting attorney and think that she did not normally play the race politics endemic to St. Louis. So I trusted that when she brought charges against Stokely, it was worth a trial.

 As for the gun that contained DNA of the policeman but not of the dead heroin dealer, that is not unusual. It is not unusual for a gun to be free of DNA. The same prosecutor issued that declaration in another cop shooting case, one I am more familiar with because it is geographically in my immediate area. So, if you base your opinion on the DNA on the gun you need to learn more about that.

The St. louis prosecutor's office that brought charges against Officer Stockley says in this report  "Lab analysts and experts confirm that it is rare to retrieve useable fingerprints or dna from a weapon..."


http://www.stltoday.com/st-louis-circuit-attorney-report-on-vonderrit-myers-shooting/pdf_f0ddc309-56cf-501f-92a3-6946648a8d1d.html

As the judge said in his verdict, it would be an anomoly for a dealer of heroin to NOT have a gun in his car. That isnt evidence, of course, but  it expresses a truth about living here in St. louis.

Okay Iris, I think I now understand your viewpoint.  I was right in that you do not support the protests, because you think that a fair trial was probably held.  But it was not clear to me before what you have just explained, that in general you do support the premise that Black people in America are suffering racism at the hands of law enforcement and that this must be stopped; but you feel that the Stockley verdict is not such a case given the criminal history of Smith. 

You feel stronger on the subject of supporting law enforcement; otherwise you might have posted a BLM sign or similar next to your "Thank You Police" signs (which I imagine would go far to preventing the vandalism you expect, and also show that supporting Black Americans and supporting law enforcement are not mutually exclusive).  Not an unusual viewpoint, I guess. Thanks for clarifying.

On the subject of echo chambers, I think you ruffled feathers not because you made a little joke at the expense of Hillary Clinton, but at the expense of Hillary supporters, of whom there are obviously many subscribed to the other thread.  Also your postings, being out of sync with the progressive nature of the thread, seemed provocative (though I agree that the "Resistance" agenda might not be clear to those outside the liberal bubble). 

The more I read the whole conversation in the other thread, it feels like people are talking past each other, almost in different languages.  I think we are all agreed that bad government must be resisted. I've never seen such an awful government in my life as the Trump administration, so I've directed my efforts into resisting it. Also, though, I'm resisting bad local politicians, both Republicans and Democrats (the IDC which MJ has mentioned,  consists largely of corrupt Democrats on the take.)

I'm good if you're good. Peace?





« Last Edit: September 22, 2017, 09:15:03 AM by Poundwise »

Poundwise

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Re: Small Daily Acts of Political Discussion
« Reply #76 on: September 22, 2017, 09:12:19 AM »
On the subject of shutting down discussion in the other thread... there are some people who post there seemingly only to stir the pot and derail the thread, and they absolutely should be shut down there and referred over here.

I do appreciate many of Iris's action posts even though I don't always agree with her.

Midwest

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Re: Small Daily Acts of Political Discussion
« Reply #77 on: September 22, 2017, 09:39:01 AM »

What Midwest said brought up an interesting thought on how one views things.
Calling those in this country illegally undocumented legitimizes their situation.

If there is a law that one doesn't agree with, is normalizing and legitimizing the situation that is a result of that law productive, or not?

Personally, I'm of the opinion that legitimizing a non-legitimate situation has the effect of making people forget that the situation isn't legitimate, and therefore reduces the urge to actually fix it. It's kind of like this thing I heard once (I don't know if it's a saying or what). If there is a bad law on the books, the best way to get it addressed is to enforce it.

What think you?

In the case of illegal immigration, we have allowed the situation to fester so long as to create a humanitarian crisis if we were to return all of those here illegally home.  if the border were secure and/or those here illegally were returned in a timely fashion, we wouldn't have the issue we have now. 

If we had zero people in our country illegally and the discussion were - should we let 10-12M low skilled people into our country as citizens, the answer would be a resounding no.  The only reason we are having this discussion is because we failed to enforce the law for the last 30 years.

On the topic of laws and enforcement, I'm of the mind that if a law is not being enforced it should be taken off the books.  Selective enforcement of laws creates uncertainty and abuse.

iris lily

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Re: Small Daily Acts of Political Discussion
« Reply #78 on: September 22, 2017, 09:56:09 AM »

Ah, ok, I understand  why you said what you said.

Here, I meant that I was not out marching. I am not carrying  placards.  I DO
 of course support peaceful protest in the abstract, as does any citizen who finds our constitutional freedoms important. That is a no brainer.

More specifically, I support African-Americans and anyone else in legally protesting institutional racism, which is what much of this protesting  is about.

I do not believe that the Stokley verdict was wrong, so in that regard I do not "support protesting" where "support" here simply means my thinky thoughts.

I think there was enough hinky stuff going on in the  Stokely case to bring charges, but I also think the prosecuting attorney was influenced by Ferguson. She had, prior to Ferguson refused to charge Stokely, but after Ferguson found "new evidence" and charged him. I still do not know what The "new evidence" is, but I really like the prosecuting attorney and think that she did not normally play the race politics endemic to St. Louis. So I trusted that when she brought charges against Stokely, it was worth a trial.

 As for the gun that contained DNA of the policeman but not of the dead heroin dealer, that is not unusual. It is not unusual for a gun to be free of DNA. The same prosecutor issued that declaration in another cop shooting case, one I am more familiar with because it is geographically in my immediate area. So, if you base your opinion on the DNA on the gun you need to learn more about that.

The St. louis prosecutor's office that brought charges against Officer Stockley says in this report  "Lab analysts and experts confirm that it is rare to retrieve useable fingerprints or dna from a weapon..."


http://www.stltoday.com/st-louis-circuit-attorney-report-on-vonderrit-myers-shooting/pdf_f0ddc309-56cf-501f-92a3-6946648a8d1d.html

As the judge said in his verdict, it would be an anomoly for a dealer of heroin to NOT have a gun in his car. That isnt evidence, of course, but  it expresses a truth about living here in St. louis.

Okay Iris, I think I now understand your viewpoint.  I was right in that you do not support the protests, because you think that a fair trial was probably held.  But it was not clear to me before what you have just explained, that in general you do support the premise that Black people in America are suffering racism at the hands of law enforcement and that this must be stopped; but you feel that the Stockley verdict is not such a case given the criminal history of Smith. 

You feel stronger on the subject of supporting law enforcement; otherwise you might have posted a BLM sign or similar next to your "Thank You Police" signs (which I imagine would go far to preventing the vandalism you expect, and also show that supporting Black Americans and supporting law enforcement are not mutually exclusive).  Not an unusual viewpoint, I guess. Thanks for clarifying.

On the subject of echo chambers, I think you ruffled feathers not because you made a little joke at the expense of Hillary Clinton, but at the expense of Hillary supporters, of whom there are obviously many subscribed to the other thread.  Also your postings, being out of sync with the progressive nature of the thread, seemed provocative (though I agree that the "Resistance" agenda might not be clear to those outside the liberal bubble). 

The more I read the whole conversation in the other thread, it feels like people are talking past each other, almost in different languages.  I think we are all agreed that bad government must be resisted. I've never seen such an awful government in my life as the Trump administration, so I've directed my efforts into resisting it. Also, though, I'm resisting bad local politicians, both Republicans and Democrats (the IDC which MJ has mentioned,  consists largely of corrupt Democrats on the take.)

I'm good if you're good. Peace?

Sure, its fine. And I dnt cnsdier riffled festhers to be an OMG scary event as you probably deduced. And I still feel curiously sad for Bernie who seems to get no love on that other thread, I just dont understand it but admit that may be my own biased reading.

For the record, I will not be the one offering support for Bernie, however. :)
« Last Edit: September 22, 2017, 09:59:53 AM by iris lily »

jordanread

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Re: Small Daily Acts of Political Discussion
« Reply #79 on: September 22, 2017, 10:06:40 AM »

What Midwest said brought up an interesting thought on how one views things.
Calling those in this country illegally undocumented legitimizes their situation.

If there is a law that one doesn't agree with, is normalizing and legitimizing the situation that is a result of that law productive, or not?

Personally, I'm of the opinion that legitimizing a non-legitimate situation has the effect of making people forget that the situation isn't legitimate, and therefore reduces the urge to actually fix it. It's kind of like this thing I heard once (I don't know if it's a saying or what). If there is a bad law on the books, the best way to get it addressed is to enforce it.

What think you?

In the case of illegal immigration, we have allowed the situation to fester so long as to create a humanitarian crisis if we were to return all of those here illegally home.  if the border were secure and/or those here illegally were returned in a timely fashion, we wouldn't have the issue we have now. 

If we had zero people in our country illegally and the discussion were - should we let 10-12M low skilled people into our country as citizens, the answer would be a resounding no.  The only reason we are having this discussion is because we failed to enforce the law for the last 30 years.

On the topic of laws and enforcement, I'm of the mind that if a law is not being enforced it should be taken off the books.  Selective enforcement of laws creates uncertainty and abuse.

Yeah, I realized as I head out that mentioning that saying probably muddied the waters a bit. It was just a thing I remembered, and totally not a proposed solution. I suppose I should have expanded on that, and clarified that the only part of that I thought was valid is that in order to change a law, we need to remember there is a law.

And while it would ruin the stupid laws googling (which can be quite fun), I agree that the only laws that should be on the books are ones that are enforced. I do not see that happening though.

iris lily

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Re: Small Daily Acts of Political Discussion
« Reply #80 on: September 22, 2017, 10:10:20 AM »
I was going to post my draft that I had written up, but that moment has passed. I suppose I can sum up the part that wasn't handled by the discussion that ensued by saying that I think one of the best ways to ensure a decent dialogue instead of shutting down a conversation would be to acknowledge the fact when it comes to things that aren't cut and dry (such as a word that may be perceived as a racial epithets), it is our own perception of the word that was used. Stating opinions as absolute fact is a pretty certain way to ensure that very little of value happens. Owning our opinions removes all of that sense of attacking, and for me at least, creates a level of respect for the self awareness of the speaker. It also makes sure that conversation stays focused on the issues.

I did want to take another moment to thank everyone who has participated in this. It's been a damn good discussion, and just proves again how awesome you all are. Iris, thanks for popping in too.



What Midwest said brought up an interesting thought on how one views things.

Calling those in this country illegally undocumented legitimizes their situation.

If there is a law that one doesn't agree with, is normalizing and legitimizing the situation that is a result of that law productive, or not?

Personally, I'm of the opinion that legitimizing a non-legitimate situation has the effect of making people forget that the situation isn't legitimate, and therefore reduces the urge to actually fix it. It's kind of like this thing I heard once (I don't know if it's a saying or what). If there is a bad law on the books, the best way to get it addressed is to enforce it.

What think you?

You are on target to emphasize that words have meaning, not always a commonly agreed meaning, and the primary interpretation is on the receiver, not the person who utters the words.Although as I thnk about it, the person who has the biggest stake in successfulfsuo communication has the burdon of not offending.

I have noticed myself saying In Real Life rather a lot lately "you can call that whatever you like, we can use your label" in order to move  a discussion along about a particular issue. Internally I roll my eyes at people who insist on their own interpretation, and primarily I am speaking of my friend who is politically conservative. So this word-love goes both ways politically.

I use "thug"  loosely. I live in an urban core where What We Call CRiminals is often the tool on Nextdoor used to bludgeon a poster and derail discussion. I dont care if someone doesnt like the word "thug"  but will cheerfully endure a short lecture on it as long as the lecturer moves along quickly to a main point.

"Perp" tends to be my go to word for the criminals around here and I still remember being soundly stomped by a moderator on a site of long long ago about that insensitive word used about my neighbor who killed  his wife. Perp. Yes. I would bet dollars to donuts that my neghbor would rather be called a "perp" than a murderer.  But now I am rambling, so so-long!
« Last Edit: September 22, 2017, 10:28:00 AM by iris lily »

Poundwise

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Re: Small Daily Acts of Political Discussion
« Reply #81 on: September 22, 2017, 10:35:40 AM »

What Midwest said brought up an interesting thought on how one views things.

Calling those in this country illegally undocumented legitimizes their situation.

If there is a law that one doesn't agree with, is normalizing and legitimizing the situation that is a result of that law productive, or not?

Personally, I'm of the opinion that legitimizing a non-legitimate situation has the effect of making people forget that the situation isn't legitimate, and therefore reduces the urge to actually fix it. It's kind of like this thing I heard once (I don't know if it's a saying or what). If there is a bad law on the books, the best way to get it addressed is to enforce it.

What think you?

Thank you, immigration is an issue that I'm eager to get your thoughts on. My opinions on this have drastically evolved over the last few years, since I moved to the NY metro area.  Previously, I didn't understand why people couldn't wait their turns... I'm big on fairness and I hate line jumpers. 

A few years ago I considered hiring a young woman, recommended by a friend, as a babysitter. But because I try to do things by the book, I couldn't do the paperwork involved in paying taxes for a household employee... because she was here illegally.  She had a son the age of one of my children and I liked her a lot, so I thought maybe I could somehow sponsor her to settle here legally. No dice! She didn't have a protected skill (though she was wonderful with children), the waiting times for an employer-sponsored domestic employee green card ranged from 3-10 years, but the number of H-2B visas are very limited and they are only seasonal,  etc. So that was that.   I did not help her and I did not hire her.

Meanwhile, my dental hygienist, a nice Chinese lady, came over here 3 years ago, to join her parents.  She had put in her application for a green card over a decade before, had grown up and gotten married in China and was employed there.  So she had to debate whether she still even wanted to come. She did in the end come with her young son, but her husband is still in China waiting for his card, and so they only see each other every 6 months. She obeyed the law, and has suffered.

I get the resentment that legal immigrants have for illegal immigrants.   But I feel that the system is very broken.  And though I don't like scofflaws, I don't like that immigrants (unlawful presence= civil offense) are getting treated as less than human than DUI citizens (criminal offense).

Lately I've come to realize that I know and live among a considerable number of illegal (undocumented) immigrants. None of them seem to have been smuggled over a border, most of them arrived here comfortably by plane and but overstayed their visas (not that it makes an ethical difference although in terms of the law, it is not considered criminal to overstay than to cross a border illegally).  All of them are decent working folk who are valuable to society and whom I feel comfortable among. They're from all over the world, including white Europeans, and indigenous peoples from Central and South America.  Things seem to be working pretty well here. We have great food, employment is high. But on the other hand I know I am not seeing the abuses and bad effects of having people working under the table. And we can't just let everyone come over, right?

All this wall and ICE craziness is telling us that it's high time for a reform.

Midwest

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Re: Small Daily Acts of Political Discussion
« Reply #82 on: September 22, 2017, 11:05:58 AM »

What Midwest said brought up an interesting thought on how one views things.

Calling those in this country illegally undocumented legitimizes their situation.

If there is a law that one doesn't agree with, is normalizing and legitimizing the situation that is a result of that law productive, or not?

Personally, I'm of the opinion that legitimizing a non-legitimate situation has the effect of making people forget that the situation isn't legitimate, and therefore reduces the urge to actually fix it. It's kind of like this thing I heard once (I don't know if it's a saying or what). If there is a bad law on the books, the best way to get it addressed is to enforce it.

What think you?

Thank you, immigration is an issue that I'm eager to get your thoughts on. My opinions on this have drastically evolved over the last few years, since I moved to the NY metro area.  Previously, I didn't understand why people couldn't wait their turns... I'm big on fairness and I hate line jumpers. 

I get the resentment that legal immigrants have for illegal immigrants.   But I feel that the system is very broken.  And though I don't like scofflaws, I don't like that immigrants (unlawful presence= civil offense) are getting treated as less than human than DUI citizens (criminal offense).

Lately I've come to realize that I know and live among a considerable number of illegal (undocumented) immigrants. None of them seem to have been smuggled over a border, most of them arrived here comfortably by plane and but overstayed their visas (not that it makes an ethical difference although in terms of the law, it is not considered criminal to overstay than to cross a border illegally).  All of them are decent working folk who are valuable to society and whom I feel comfortable among. They're from all over the world, including white Europeans, and indigenous peoples from Central and South America.  Things seem to be working pretty well here. We have great food, employment is high. But on the other hand I know I am not seeing the abuses and bad effects of having people working under the table. And we can't just let everyone come over, right?

All this wall and ICE craziness is telling us that it's high time for a reform.

I'm sure a lot of these people are lovely and a lot of the world would like to come to the US.  Each year, we allow over 1 million people to immigrate legally to the US.  I'm ok with some immigration, but there need to be limits and those limits need to be enforced.  If we had been tracking down and returning those here illegally in a timely fashion, we wouldn't have an issue and a large portion of the 12m here now would have stayed home.

If we want to discuss increasing immigration quota's and/or reform, I'm fine with that but the current lack of enforcement is an issue.

Many of the enforcement stories I'm hearing involve people who have been here for 20 years... and fighting extradition for 12-15 of the 20.  We identified them as here illegally and it shouldn't take 10+ years to make a decision to allow them to stay or send them back.
« Last Edit: September 22, 2017, 11:08:26 AM by Midwest »

Poundwise

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Re: Small Daily Acts of Political Discussion
« Reply #83 on: September 22, 2017, 11:21:15 AM »
I agree that properly formed policy is superior to unevenly enforced laws. If you are going to deport people, it would be better to catch them in their first year, rather than after they have started families and businesses, and bought homes.

Having a lot of legal immigrants is not the end of the world, in fact it's really awesome here as opposed to the town where I grew up which was pretty homogeneous.

Just as a starting point for discussion, what would happen if we allowed market forces to have a greater force in determining how many immigrants came to the US?

Midwest

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Re: Small Daily Acts of Political Discussion
« Reply #84 on: September 22, 2017, 11:26:50 AM »
I agree that properly formed policy is superior to unevenly enforced laws. If you are going to deport people, it would be better to catch them in their first year, rather than after they have started families and businesses, and bought homes.

Having a lot of legal immigrants is not the end of the world, in fact it's really awesome here as opposed to the town where I grew up which was pretty homogeneous.

Just as a starting point for discussion, what would happen if we allowed market forces to have a greater force in determining how many immigrants came to the US?

Market forces as in a) uncontrolled immigration b) corporations/employers being the determining factors or c) discussions and bills in the govt to increase/decrease immigration as needed?

a and b are non-starters for me.  We need integration into society.  Uncontrolled immigration will lead to the opposite.  Item b will lead to immigrants being brought in to undercut the wages of citizens.

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Re: Small Daily Acts of Political Discussion
« Reply #85 on: September 22, 2017, 12:10:14 PM »
Thanks jordanread for starting this discussion thread.

It seemed like a good way to keep actions focused on actions, and still have a place to discuss when necessary. I'm extremely pleased with how it's turned out. And you're welcome.

immigration is an issue that I'm eager to get your thoughts on.

Someday soon, I will actually write up my thoughts on it. For someone who has spent a lot of time thinking about it, my underlying premises are somewhat unique in the realm of folks who actually care.

You are on target to emphasize that words have meaning, not always a commonly agreed meaning, and the primary interpretation is on the receiver, not the person who utters the words.Although as I think about it, the person who has the biggest stake in successful communication has the burden of not offending.

Huh. Yeah, that is a good point. I would add a caveat though (one I think you get). The burden of not offending does not mean saying nothing that could potentially be offending to anyone, because that would be damn near impossible. When one states that they find something offensive (there is that onus I put on them), we respect it moving forward. It's also our (as the biggest stakeholders) responsibility to create an environment where people can recognize they can say they find something offensive.

I have to say that while I don't think you and I see eye to eye politically on a lot of things, I damn near cheered when I saw your response:

Its a small thing. Be the bigger person, move on.

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Re: Small Daily Acts of Political Discussion
« Reply #86 on: September 22, 2017, 12:16:42 PM »
Just as a starting point for discussion, what would happen if we allowed market forces to have a greater force in determining how many immigrants came to the US?

In its purest form, I actually think that market forces would push away from nationalistic tendency and move towards globalization. That's overly simplified of course, but at its most basic, patriotism and pure markets don't necessarily go hand in hand.

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Re: Small Daily Acts of Political Discussion
« Reply #87 on: September 22, 2017, 01:08:24 PM »
I agree that properly formed policy is superior to unevenly enforced laws. If you are going to deport people, it would be better to catch them in their first year, rather than after they have started families and businesses, and bought homes.

Having a lot of legal immigrants is not the end of the world, in fact it's really awesome here as opposed to the town where I grew up which was pretty homogeneous.

Just as a starting point for discussion, what would happen if we allowed market forces to have a greater force in determining how many immigrants came to the US?

Market forces as in a) uncontrolled immigration b) corporations/employers being the determining factors or c) discussions and bills in the govt to increase/decrease immigration as needed?

a and b are non-starters for me.  We need integration into society.  Uncontrolled immigration will lead to the opposite.  Item b will lead to immigrants being brought in to undercut the wages of citizens.

So the problem is in several parts, to my mind:
1. what to do with the immigrants already here illegally
2. what to do going forward with immigrants who wish to come here
      a. skilled immigrants


Midwest

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Re: Small Daily Acts of Political Discussion
« Reply #88 on: September 22, 2017, 01:25:07 PM »
I agree that properly formed policy is superior to unevenly enforced laws. If you are going to deport people, it would be better to catch them in their first year, rather than after they have started families and businesses, and bought homes.

Having a lot of legal immigrants is not the end of the world, in fact it's really awesome here as opposed to the town where I grew up which was pretty homogeneous.

Just as a starting point for discussion, what would happen if we allowed market forces to have a greater force in determining how many immigrants came to the US?

Market forces as in a) uncontrolled immigration b) corporations/employers being the determining factors or c) discussions and bills in the govt to increase/decrease immigration as needed?

a and b are non-starters for me.  We need integration into society.  Uncontrolled immigration will lead to the opposite.  Item b will lead to immigrants being brought in to undercut the wages of citizens.

So the problem is in several parts, to my mind:
1. what to do with the immigrants already here illegally
2. what to do going forward with immigrants who wish to come here
      a. skilled immigrants

Step 1.  Stop the inflow.  This would and should include a system for determining status to work and punishing employers who violate.

Step 2 (simultaneous with 1) - Determine a path for those who get to stay and what that means as far as citizenship.  Set up a path for those who are leaving.

Step 3 - If we need to change the standards for skilled immigration, I'm good with that.  Skilled, legal immigration is a net good for our country.  Out of control immigration of unskilled persons is not.

You mention only skilled labor, but I'm good with migrant workers who are here legally.  They are not skilled, but are probably a necessity to our economy.  Let them pay taxes and live in the US for part of the year.

« Last Edit: September 22, 2017, 01:26:51 PM by Midwest »

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Re: Small Daily Acts of Political Discussion
« Reply #89 on: September 22, 2017, 01:32:12 PM »
I was just about to question something you said, and then you edited.

Out of control immigration of unskilled persons is not.

You mention only skilled labor, but I'm good with migrant workers who are here legally.  They are not skilled, but are probably a necessity to our economy.  Let them pay taxes and live in the US for part of the year.

I just wanted to make sure that I understand the big point about that first sentence I quoted was the 'out of control' part, not the unskilled part, right?

Midwest

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Re: Small Daily Acts of Political Discussion
« Reply #90 on: September 22, 2017, 01:37:03 PM »
I was just about to question something you said, and then you edited.

Out of control immigration of unskilled persons is not.

You mention only skilled labor, but I'm good with migrant workers who are here legally.  They are not skilled, but are probably a necessity to our economy.  Let them pay taxes and live in the US for part of the year.

I just wanted to make sure that I understand the big point about that first sentence I quoted was the 'out of control' part, not the unskilled part, right?

Correct.  Uncontrolled is the major issue.  I suspect a high proportion of those here illegally are both unskilled and here illegally.

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Re: Small Daily Acts of Political Discussion
« Reply #91 on: September 22, 2017, 02:20:57 PM »
Quote
You mention only skilled labor,

Ugh, I wrote a huge long response and it got truncated! No time to rewrite it now, will get back to the discussion hopefully later this evening...

jordanread

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Re: Small Daily Acts of Political Discussion
« Reply #92 on: September 22, 2017, 02:34:38 PM »
Quote
You mention only skilled labor,

Ugh, I wrote a huge long response and it got truncated! No time to rewrite it now, will get back to the discussion hopefully later this evening...

Yeah, looks like there are some intermittent database things happening. I just had an error when I tried to post the first draft. At least we are patient.



I was just about to question something you said, and then you edited.

Out of control immigration of unskilled persons is not.

You mention only skilled labor, but I'm good with migrant workers who are here legally.  They are not skilled, but are probably a necessity to our economy.  Let them pay taxes and live in the US for part of the year.

I just wanted to make sure that I understand the big point about that first sentence I quoted was the 'out of control' part, not the unskilled part, right?

Correct.  Uncontrolled is the major issue.  I suspect a high proportion of those here illegally are both unskilled and here illegally.

Cool. Glad I got that clear, even though I didn't on first read.

Related to your last sentence, and this is off topic, in my personal experience, I've found that unskilled folks who come here wind up more skilled than me at any job involving a hammer (admittedly not a high bar). It's just anecdata, but the people I know (because a person who lives in my neighborhood employs them, and we talk) may be here illegally, and may have come with no skills whatsoever, but holy shit, the stuff I've learned from them is amazing.

Oh. So off topic regards to out of control, but not off topic regarding legal unskilled immigration.

Midwest

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Re: Small Daily Acts of Political Discussion
« Reply #93 on: September 23, 2017, 06:40:56 AM »
Out of control immigration of unskilled persons is not.

You mention only skilled labor, but I'm good with migrant workers who are here legally.  They are not skilled, but are probably a necessity to our economy.  Let them pay taxes and live in the US for part of the year.

I just wanted to make sure that I understand the big point about that first sentence I quoted was the 'out of control' part, not the unskilled part, right?

Correct.  Uncontrolled is the major issue.  I suspect a high proportion of those here illegally are both unskilled and here illegally.

Cool. Glad I got that clear, even though I didn't on first read.

Related to your last sentence, and this is off topic, in my personal experience, I've found that unskilled folks who come here wind up more skilled than me at any job involving a hammer (admittedly not a high bar). It's just anecdata, but the people I know (because a person who lives in my neighborhood employs them, and we talk) may be here illegally, and may have come with no skills whatsoever, but holy shit, the stuff I've learned from them is amazing.

Oh. So off topic regards to out of control, but not off topic regarding legal unskilled immigration.

I would define construction workers as unskilled and believe there are plenty of unskilled citizens who could do those jobs.  There is another thread on this board calling for UBI due to the lack of unskilled labor jobs.  Given the issues of the unskilled American laborer, the last thing we need for them at moment is illegal competition.  If we as a society, decide there is need for unskilled labor (migrant agricultural workers), let's discuss allowing them to work under a guest worker program.

On the other hand, I work with 2 immigrants (both with degrees) and across the street are a number of IT people (highly educated) here under some sort of visa program.  If we want a strong country, we nee

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Re: Small Daily Acts of Political Discussion
« Reply #94 on: September 26, 2017, 09:40:49 AM »
    Apparently whatever gremlin that attacked my post also got yours, Midwest! Maybe there are dark forces that don't want us to solve the problem of immigration!

    Anyway, I'm back and have done some reorganization of my thoughts of the subject.

    First I listed forces pushing us to increase immigration, both legal and illegal.
    • Humanitarian (saving lives)
    • Humanitarian (reuniting families)
    • Optimal demographics
              - US population growth from births to native-born citizens is below replacement
         - Immigrants generally are younger, working age population >> pay more taxes/care for aging native pop.
              - Lower crime rate among immigrants than native born population
         - Immigrants tend to have higher birth rates though they approach native rates within 2
      generations
         - Global overpopulation that makes it more sensible to allow more immigration than to encourage higher births within US
    • Economic (overlaps with demographics)
              - Sector gaps in United states (need for special skills)
              - Immigrants more likely than natives to start businesses
              - Employers wanting labor market where they can pay workers less and treat them worse
              - Consumers wanting to pay less

    Forces pushing us to reduce immigration
    • Reduction in quality of life for workers: more workers means more competition for jobs
    • Fear of cultural dilution
    • Expense of vetting immigrants
    • Crowding: higher population density
            - more competition for real estate, consumables, etc.
            - more consumption of education resources as immigrants younger & have larger families

[Edited to add "crowding" to the second list: a huge oversight]
« Last Edit: September 28, 2017, 07:29:45 AM by Poundwise »

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Re: Small Daily Acts of Political Discussion
« Reply #95 on: September 26, 2017, 10:00:29 AM »
Each of those forces comes with unknowns that we need to calculate or decide as a country. For instance, what IS the optimal population density and demographic makeup of the USA, perhaps broken down by region? Do we prioritize saving lives over our economic wellbeing? How much do wages have to be raised before native workers living in depressed areas  will move to other regions and accept undesirable jobs, such as being agricultural or restaurant workers, childcare, eldercare?

Finally, I listed a bunch of ways to limit immigration.

Dealing with immigrants already present illegally:
  • group amnesty
  • proposals that undocumented immigrants pay extra fees to be legalized
  • deportation
  • higher penalties to employers of undocumented >> with no jobs perhaps immigrants will leave on their own

Prevention of future undocumented:
  • Better border control (wall, airports, tracking)
  • Harsh treatment of undocumented immigrants
  • higher penalties to employers of under the table workers
  • International solutions: decrease motivation to leave by providing diplomatic or financial aid to countries of origin
  • faster processing of legitimate green card and citizen applications (many illegal immigrants are eligible to come here legally but not willing to wait 10 years to reunite with family or take advantage of job opportunities)
  • Connect unemployed native workers with labor markets in other regions of the country; if qualified US citizens are available for hire, there will be less work for noncitizens and they will not come

More ideas (the market-based solutions I was talking about)
  • Peg numbers of green cards to unemployment rates
  • Allow employers to bid on green cards
  • Worker visas

Miscellaneous ideas:
  • Provide a wider range of visas with differing time lengths, like refugee visas and preferred neighbor work visas. How to reduce temptation to overstay visas or not improve situation in home country?
« Last Edit: September 28, 2017, 08:22:11 AM by Poundwise »

Poundwise

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Re: Small Daily Acts of Political Discussion
« Reply #96 on: September 26, 2017, 10:09:24 AM »
And to comment on the conversation that jordanread and Midwest were having... I do think there is room to include more types of jobs as skilled. 

Also, how to create a guest worker program that doesn't have the same problems as having the illegal workers in the first place? Fact of the matter is, employers like the illegal immigrants because they are hardworking, don't take on airs or ask for much pay, and you can just throw them out when you're done! (like consultants)

I could see guest worker visas working in areas where employers are hiring simply because there aren't enough people for the jobs.  Maybe these visas would be valid only in certain regions?

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Re: Small Daily Acts of Political Discussion
« Reply #97 on: September 28, 2017, 06:07:18 AM »
On the subject of immigration (I seem to have stunned everybody into silence with my long boring list posts) here is a fascinating article about the Wall.
https://www.usatoday.com/border-wall/

Takeaway:
Quote
A network investigation of public records found that walling the border in this wide-open area could require disrupting or seizing nearly 5,000 parcels of property.

jordanread

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Re: Small Daily Acts of Political Discussion
« Reply #98 on: September 28, 2017, 06:55:01 AM »
LOL. You didn't stun me into silence. Just haven't had time to break it.

One thing that you did do, and that I appreciate, is write a well thought out and in depth post, one that requires a well thought out response. I should respond soon (I still need to get some of my fundamental views expressed appropriately). I think Sunday at the latest.

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Re: Small Daily Acts of Political Discussion
« Reply #99 on: September 28, 2017, 08:04:17 AM »
Looking forward to it!  No pressure though... everyone is busy.

As you can see, I'm trying to formulate an opinion on the best way to reform immigration. I actually have no opinion right now, because I know that I don't know enough to have a valid opinion. I will venture that it is impossible to form a valid opinion on what is most effective in the absence of hard numbers and studies, but at least it's a starting point where we can use our own senses of ethics to impose an order on which solutions would be preferred.

For instance, I find that my ethics call for the rescuing of human lives over all. So I have to put humanitarian forces first. On the other hand, I find that consumer desire to have good things cheap at the expense of others is not part of my ethos, so that goes on the bottom. Fear of cultural dilution is not part of my makeup either. Dislike of crowding/competition is probably the top force opposing my ethical obligation to take in strangers. Likewise, I am looking at all the solutions and asking whether they are ethical, whether they are expensive, and whether they are effective.  Unfortunately I don't know the answers to the second two questions, though of course I can guess. Maybe that ridiculous sounding wall is actually the most effective and kind solution. I just don't know.

Reality also has to impose itself. Maybe the number of genuine refugees far exceeds the number of immigrants that the US could absorb in comfort. If there were 100 people on the street in danger for their lives, I'd of course let them into my house. For maybe a day or two.  But after that, I'd totally want to look into ways of making the street safe again so I could get them out.  Yet am I the person who would knowingly throw them out into danger again, once they were safe in my house? I guess I wouldn't.
« Last Edit: September 28, 2017, 08:12:02 AM by Poundwise »