RationalWiki talk:What is going on in the world?

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[edit] Bob Jones University

Why put the emphasis on "they"? Its not as if the investigative agency was supposed to be on their side really.

[edit] GamerGate

Got onto BBC Radio 4's flagship news programme Today here in the UK yesterday as well. Oldusgitus (talk) 18:05, 31 October 2014 (UTC)

Ooh crikey. Today or PM? Summary? - David Gerard (talk) 18:08, 31 October 2014 (UTC)
MY message to GamerGate STOP MAKING THE GAMING COMMUNITY LOOK BAD. YOU ALL SUCK GO DIE IN A FUUUUCKING WHOLE "from"--N7.Geth (talk) 19:31, 5 December 2014 (UTC)
You just resurrected a really old thread with a lot of anger. I don't mind being angry at idiots, but shouldn't anger be at least a little temporally focused? Ikanreed (talk) 19:41, 5 December 2014 (UTC)

[edit] Putin vs. Wikipedia

Has he contacted Andy yet? --Gulik (talk) 19:02, 17 November 2014 (UTC)

No but Andy has nothing but effusive praise for the action, from what I've heard. Ikanreed (talk) 19:21, 17 November 2014 (UTC)
Wikimedia Russia (the local chapter) doesn't take this very seriously, and suggests it will join similar announcementware like the Kremlin's replacement for Google announced last year. You don't remember that one? Neither does the Kremlin, apparently - David Gerard (talk) 09:05, 18 November 2014 (UTC)
Schlaffy's supporting Russia in this? What a dispicable traitor to his nation. (talk) 09:25, 18 November 2014 (UTC)

[edit] Julien Blanc

I'm incredibly uncomfortable with the idea of someone being barred from entering a country for the crime of being a douchebag. I don't feel this is something any government should have gotten involved with. A protest at the site itself, a campaign to the venues to cancel his gig etc... all those would have been acceptable to me, but not government intervention to the point of disallowing him entry. X Stickman (talk) 19:17, 19 November 2014 (UTC)

OTOH, it's quite an achievement to be too misogynistic for the Abbott government - David Gerard (talk) 20:17, 19 November 2014 (UTC)
Luckily he's not barred for "being a douchebag", he's barred for openly advocating assault as a dating tactic, with video evidence. A history of violence is a not-at-all-uncommon reason for barring people from entering your nation. Ikanreed (talk) 20:23, 19 November 2014 (UTC)
That's the difference, these PUA often go far beyond simply being a "douchebag". I'm not particularly happy with rapists being allowed entry to our country, neither am I people who have encouraged sexual assault in others. This is something to celebrate --Drowninginlimbo (talk) 21:42, 19 November 2014 (UTC)
Just judging by the article though I can see why someone would be alarmed. It mostly mentioned him as a sexist or racist rather than someone who assaults people (they downplayed that a bit more than they should have).TheriziπosaurusG (talk) 22:20, 19 November 2014 (UTC)
I imagine many of these PUAs have assaulted women in the past, at least the more aggressive ones. I've seen quite a few posters in r/theredpill admit to rape before --Drowninginlimbo (talk) 22:55, 19 November 2014 (UTC)
"Luckily he's not barred for "being a douchebag", he's barred for openly advocating assault as a dating tactic, with video evidence." - I'm not seeing the point at which he transitions from "douchebag" into "something more than douchebag" from what you're saying, unless you're flat-out claiming he's committed incitement, in which case people should be petitioning the authorities to investigate (and I assume some people are). Until the criminal justice system grinds into motion, I don't see what good it will do anyone to outright ban him from entering a country. Which is not to endorse or minimise the awful stuff he says, I just take a dim view of using censorship to tackle social ills. Grumblejaws (talk) 12:21, 20 November 2014 (UTC)
You're pontificating while clearly avoiding looking into WTF you're pontificating on. His videos advocate "picking up" women by assaulting them - David Gerard (talk) 12:24, 20 November 2014 (UTC)
For the record the offical line is
following the London bombings in July 2005, the Home Secretary announced a list of particular activities that would normally lead to a person being excluded or deported from the United Kingdom (UK) on the grounds that their presence in the UK would not be conducive to the public good. The list of unacceptable behaviours covers any non-UK national whether in the UK or abroad who used any means or medium including:

Writing, producing, publishing or distributing material

Public speaking including preaching

Running a website

Using a position of responsibility such as a teacher, community or youth leader

to express views that:

foment or justify terrorist violence in furtherance of particular beliefs

seek to provoke others to terrorist acts

foment other serious criminal activity or seek to provoke others to serious criminal acts

foster hatred which might lead to inter-community violence in the UK

The list is indicative and not exhaustive.
Note that this is a reason to refuse entry or deport non UK citizens. Note also, for comparison, a Canadian (if I remember correctly) was refused entry to the US because his web site mentioned that he had used LSD in his youth. By comparison the UK restrictions are very mild. Doxys Midnight Runner (talk) 13:49, 20 November 2014 (UTC)
Oh, and this list of people refused entry to the UK might be of interest. The one that raised an eybrow for me was Martha Stewart! Doxys Midnight Runner (talk) 13:56, 20 November 2014 (UTC)
@David Gerard, no I'm completely aware of WTF I'm pontificating on, that's why I was explicit that I don't endorse or seek to minimise the things he says. My point was that Ikanreed's response to Stickman didn't explain why Blanc is in some meaningful way more than a douchebag, it just specified why he is a douchebag. I dunno, maybe that word is more mild than I realised, it's not one I use. At any rate, I've had a problem with my native UK's incitement laws and the Home Office's corollary exclusion list for some time and my take on this issue is coloured by that. Grumblejaws (talk) 21:16, 20 November 2014 (UTC)
I concur on that - David Gerard (talk) 23:48, 20 November 2014 (UTC)
I personally think that the chilling nature of your country's hate laws on speech was best shown when Fred Phelps was banned from entering the UK. As some smart person once said, the best way to determine a society's willingness to have free speech, is to see if they'll tolerate Phelp's bilge. Brenden (talk) 00:43, 27 November 2014 (UTC)

────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────We have nothing against homegrown nutters but I see no reason to allow foreigners to pollute the country. Do you imagine Phelps would have been admitted to the US if he'd been British? Scream!! (talk) 02:12, 27 November 2014 (UTC)

[edit] Aaaaaaand Ferguson is on fire.

There are live updates on Reddit. It seems that other marches/protests across the nation have largely been peaceful (save a few exceptions) or planned for other dates, but Ferguson has erupted into mild chaos, reporting several major fires, looting, and gunfire.

Yeah, bravo. I'm sure this is exactly what the parents of Michael would've wanted. And as someone who lives in the semi-south, I'm sure tomorrow I'll hear all the "I told you so"s and the usual subtly racist rhetoric from my coworkers from all this rioting, but with equal disregard for the line of reasoning of why the officer in question was not indicted. (One of the reasons why I'm not fond of Osaka Sun's "America" comic link -- there are some massive issues with police accountability, but it's a different situation for this particular case)

Bah. Fuck this noise. Noir LeSable (talk) 06:26, 25 November 2014 (UTC)

And my usual question : Which happened first? The violence or the tear gar? Compro01 (talk) 09:02, 25 November 2014 (UTC)
I don't think it really matters. You don't go around burning people's stuff, even if there is tear gas involved. That said, the police response seems to have been moronic - from what I've heard, the protesters were just yelling at riot police (or police dressed in riot gear) and a police officer got up on an armored car and told them to disperse or face tear gas. It kind of sounded like the protesters were trapped between gas and police shields. There's been shooting with automatic weapons, but it's unclear whether it's coming from panicked property owners or anarchists (it's not the police). This is the new America.(Agrajag (talk) 12:54, 25 November 2014 (UTC))
From what I've heard, it was much more than "just yelling". And you talk as if riots and civil unrest in America haven't been a thing for the last century. Noir LeSable (talk) 16:31, 25 November 2014 (UTC)
It does matter, the government's violence is a reaction to the and as a way of protecting the system that oppresses black Americans for being black. For all these cries of vandalism and flag burning, people seem to be okay with black bodies being vandalized and burned or make really shitty false equivalences for them. Maybe I'm being cynical idk. BlackProg (talk) 17:00, 25 November 2014 (UTC)
Nah, the "violence is always justified for public order" justification is fundamentally hypocritical. You take out the "always" from the notion, and you might be able to construct a meaningful notion of governance. But it's always like "something bad happened, thus shooting at people is okay". And it's disproportionately used on black people. Ikanreed (talk) 17:12, 25 November 2014 (UTC)
So the American Bar Association is questioning the ruling. --TiaC (talk) 19:43, 25 November 2014 (UTC)
If they're thinking about bringing a new trial, good luck trying to find an impartial jury at this point. I'd welcome one -- as long as it remains impartial and not some sort of "justice by popularity" deal. Noir LeSable (talk) 21:43, 25 November 2014 (UTC)
No, the National Bar Association is questioning it. The American Bar Association is an entirely different organization, despite the similar names. Compro01 (talk) 14:03, 26 November 2014 (UTC)
Here's a thing from my perspective. Whether justified or not, the Ferguson incident has sparked off significant protests across multiple US cities. I can see two possible reasons for this
  • Across the US there are significant numbers of people who were looking for any excuse to go out and have a good riot.
  • Across the US there are significant numbers of people who are so pissed off by their perception of injustice in US policing that the wanted to express their anger in a way that would get noticed.
The very fact that so many rioted in so many locations has to be significant. Sending in troops to crush the rebellion doesn't resolve the issue, it just pushes it back under the carpet. Doxys Midnight Runner (talk) 14:21, 26 November 2014 (UTC)
I think people are getting sick about hearing about severe police abuses across the country where the punishment for the cop is nearly zero. There are many good cops, but it seems like a run in with a bad one can easily send anyone to critical care. It's very obvious that the darker the skin the more likely the interaction will be fatal. It isn't a justification for violence. However, I think people are fed up going through what you are supposed to do that there seems little option left. EmeraldCityWanderer (talk) 15:18, 26 November 2014 (UTC)

What a shame. Peaceful, persistent protests are vastly more effective for uniting people in favor of your cause, and equally effective in causing institutional change (e.g. if they want the police chief to lose his job). Rioting and hurting people who have nothing to do with the situation will only stoke the racial tension. Aside from the fact that there clearly wasn't sufficient evidence to convict Darren Wilson of anything (though, arguably, he should have been indicted), arson and looting only ever makes things worse.--Episteme (talk) 00:21, 27 November 2014 (UTC)

Riots are very likely when you put a lot of excited young people in one place and they get angry for any reason. That's why both sports riots and prison riots are a thing. Crowds naturally form during certain events, particularly when the event has a geographic focus. Is anybody oppressing the fans of a winning sports team? No. But sometimes they riot anyway. The best countermeasure known for outdoor riots is rain. Pour a few centimetres of cold rain on that crowd of excited young people and most will leave for somewhere warmed and drier. And if they get angry about it the rain doesn't care, it is calmly relentless in a way no human police force could be, water will fall on you until you stop running around in the street and go indoors. All this and it rarely causes lethal injuries. Tialaramex (talk) 09:49, 28 November 2014 (UTC)
Franz Fanon argued in his book The Wretched of the Earth that any oppressed, marginalized, alienated and colonized group inevitably will and must resort to violence against their oppressors. This is because the systems of oppression that ensnare them and deny them their humanity are inherently violent, and only through violence do they assert their humanity in the face of such flagrant abuses and create a new group identity and consciousness. Some have argued that African Americans essentially constitute an internally colonized group in the United States. I'd say that they more accurately resemble a perpetually unemployed group of redundant laborers, forced to choose between joining the military, getting a sports scholarship, or recapitalizing the ghettos they've been driven into through crime, but they certainly are faced with systems of oppression that are inherently violent in the form of our police and penal systems, both designed to control the dangerous classes. Responding to a system of violence they face every day with violence seems quite reasonable to me. They know that there isn't much hope for reforms and change within the system that is designed to oppress them, the verdict is proof enough of that. So because they are daily faced with violence and repression by the police and penal system, and see that all legal avenues for change are hopeless, they are left without any other choice but to riot and assert that, yes, they are indeed human beings and have limits to what they will put up with. They won't be told to be calm and wait for things to get better any longer. The collateral damage is regrettable, but I wouldn't dream of condemning anything done by people who live the lives that this structural lumpenproletariat are forced to live, and for all intents and purposes will continue to live if nothing actually comes of this. (talk) 17:20, 28 November 2014 (UTC)

Don't be silly. Of course you can cause institutional change through non-violent means (remember this thing called the "Civil Rights Movement?"...). Rioting is in no way necessary to achieve what's wanted in Ferguson (i.e. reform in the police department). Bare assertion to the contrary gets you nowhere. Secondly, you should temper your hyperbole when describing the state of the African American community in the US. Are they at a disadvantage? Yes. Is there subtle, yet widespread racism? Yes. Is there white privilege? Yes. But saying that they're "oppressed, alienated, colonized, marginalized" etc. is just absurd and inaccurate. Plenty of African Americans have made it out of the ghetto to be successful by means other than sports. Opportunity is available to essentially all African Americans (though the right social environment might not be present for them to take advantage of it). You're wrong, and your blatant advocating of violence is disgusting. Destroying random shops will not achieve anything. Does this woman look like a racist white oppressor to you?--Episteme (talk) 20:43, 28 November 2014 (UTC)

Your argument is wrong-headed in the extreme. For one, you exaggerate the extent of racism in this country vastly. While it is a much greater problem than most of the populace believes and a large portion of the US population is disadvantaged in many ways, no minority in this nation constitutes a permanent underclass. Secondly, you do the protesters a great disservice by claiming that the violent individuals among them are expressing the feelings of any substantial proportion of their movement. As for the claim that there is no hope for reform - while change rarely comes quickly enough in anything, it happens and has been happening rapidly for the past half century. One bad verdict does not a reactionary nation make. Thirdly, your idiotic arguments in favor of violence reek in pretty much every possible way. "Collateral damage"? It's a nice way to breeze past other people's losses, isn't it? If it were your livelihood gone because of some drunken bastard's Molotov cocktail, I'll bet that you wouldn't be so dismissive. And this little gem "I wouldn't dream of condemning anything done by people who live the lives that this structural lumpenproletariat are forced to live": just because someone is at a disadvantage (the colonized, impoverished people of the Daesh, for instance) does not give them the right to make other people's lives miserable. But probably the most revolting part of your screed is your assertion that violence is a way to prove humanity. Violence is not humanizing or a way to prove personhood. Violence is inhuman. Rioting signals (truly or falsely) that you are a person who cannot be dealt with or reasoned with as a human being and confirms dehumanizing stereotypes. The violence of a few poisons the well of a whole legitimate protest movement.The fact that you make these assertions is disturbing, and I can only hope that your beliefs are not widely shared. (Agrajag (talk) 22:02, 28 November 2014 (UTC))

Here in oakland its incredibly peaceful. People are just marchin'. First times anything been peaceful 'round here

[edit] Removed the Christmas Goat

Given that the live feed shows the goat is still intact, I removed the article about the goat by using <!-- -->. Barring a rewrite or a likely awesome arson, of which I am too tired to do the former and too far away to do the latter, I hid the article. ĵ₳¥ášÇ♠ʘ Give a man a face, and he will say what you want to hear. Give him a mask, and he will say what he wants 06:30, 29 November 2014 (UTC)

I put it back with what I hope is better phrasing. (And I think I'll add the live feed.) --Gulik (talk) 21:13, 29 November 2014 (UTC)

[edit] Reduction in the quality of chemotherapy

So, alt-med not only gives false hope, but it does direct harm to cancer treatment? I think we have a (forget this. take the link yourself Category:Cancer_woo|whole category to update). Ikanreed (talk) 20:44, 3 December 2014 (UTC)

My understanding is that many chemotherapy drugs are anti-vitamins; which is one of the reasons they have drastic side effects. I remember reading that feeding B vitamins was a disaster for victims of leukemia, and this is how the idea of chemotherapy arose. Since alternative medicine sets great store in vitamins and anti-oxidants, it isn't surprising that it works at cross purposes. - Smerdis of Tlön, for the defense. 17:10, 5 December 2014 (UTC)

[edit] Fetal Personhood

How on earth is drinking a ton of booze during pregnancy and giving your child brain damage not considered a crime in any way? If someone were to, say, get drunk and hit their child, it would be child abuse.TheriziπosaurusG (talk) 21:06, 5 December 2014 (UTC)

Because a fetus isn't a person. I think I summed that up rather nicely. AyzmoCheers 21:24, 5 December 2014 (UTC)
Well that fetus is a person now, and she has brain damage. Yay?TheriziπosaurusG (talk) 23:18, 5 December 2014 (UTC)
The issue is not whether mothers who drink during their pregnancy should be held liable for harming their child. The issue is that if the court ruled in favor of the prosecution in this specific case, then they would have set as precedent the idea that fetuses should be considered to have the same rights as people, which would effectively ban abortion in the UK. Frederick♠♣♥♦ 04:38, 6 December 2014 (UTC)
It probably isn't a good idea in any case to give pregnant women who drink an incentive to reject medical care when giving birth. When you turn a medical diagnosis into evidence of a crime, that's what you do. People everywhere need to get over this idea that any time something undesirable happens, someone should be punished. - Smerdis of Tlön, for the defense. 20:52, 6 December 2014 (UTC)
It wasn't about someone getting punished for doing something bad, though. It was about the poor girl that has to live with brain damage being made eligible or ineligible for receiving financial support through the criminal injuries compensation scheme. Apparently the victim has to be a person at the moment the heinous act is committed for it to be considered a crime, so I guess this means you can't commit any crimes when you're hurting a non-human animal either. *shrugs* (talk) 21:33, 6 December 2014 (UTC)
Actually, it means that you can't use a law designed to protect persons to prosecute someone hurting a non-human animal. Courts base their decisions on the law-as-written, not the law-as-somenone-wishes-it-to-be. --ZooGuard (talk) 18:32, 7 December 2014 (UTC)
It doesn't matter whether it was a person or not at the time the mother harmed it: it ended up as a person who was severely harmed. So the mother harmed her child, and that's a crime. Plain and simple. Crimes shouldn't be ignored just because prosecuting them gets even remotely close to some political agenda.TheriziπosaurusG (talk) 23:08, 6 December 2014 (UTC)
Is there an article on "There should be a law"? If there isn't, someone should write it.--ZooGuard (talk) 18:32, 7 December 2014 (UTC)
Having a disabled child isn't a crime. There are many situations where mothers are at high risk of having a disabled baby, due to lifestyle (as in this case), maternal age, hereditary conditions or other factors, and choose to conceive &/or carry the pregnancy to term. If we make it a crime for an alcoholic woman to have a child, would we also make it a crime for a middle-aged woman to have a child? ΨΣΔξΣΓΩΙÐWeaselly.jpgMethinks it is a Weasel 21:08, 7 December 2014 (UTC)
Hells yeah, let's jump right into this cesspit of an idea with both feet. Sickle cell, Tay-Sachs, Cystic Fibrosis - if you have the genes and you carry the fetus to term, you're a criminal. Insist on a homebirth or a VBAC and get a shitty outcome? Refuse a C-section in the first place and have a kid with CP? Jail. Poor materal diet leads to neural tube defect, cleft palate, or heart disease? Prenatal vitamins: ITS THE LAW. Not to mention those selfish bitches on antiseizure meds or SSRIs, only thinking of their selfs and not thier babbies. Directly harmed by their mothers, who should only have the absolute best interests of their potential unborn children at heart instead of themselves. Goddammit.--Martin Arrowsmith (talk) 20:30, 9 December 2014 (UTC)
Is it a bad thing to discourage behaviour that can damage the fetus during pregnancy when the mother has the intent to carry the pregnancy to term? It's not necessarily a horrible thing to lead a disabled existence, and carrying a pregnancy to term when the child is known or likely to be disabled shouldn't be a crime, but is it wrong to disallow mothers the option of actively increasing the likelihood of their yet-to-be-born children to be born disabled to the point where they're almost certainly dooming their offspring to this fate? (talk) 20:47, 9 December 2014 (UTC)
Is it a bad thing to discourage behaviour that can damage the fetus during pregnancy? No. Is it wrong to disallow mothers the option of actively increasing the likelihood of their yet-to-be-born children to be born disabled? Yes. There's a lot of ground between "discourage" & "disallow". WéáśéĺóíďWeaselly.jpgMethinks it is a Weasel 21:12, 9 December 2014 (UTC)
When something is disallowed by the law, the ramifications are mostly just that the action is discouraged through the threat of punishments and that a foundation is solidified for public disapproval of the action. Would it be so horrible if the justice system discouraged fetus-damaging behaviour through the threat of a financial punishment? Surely if anyone besides the mother assaulted the fetus it would be considered a crime, so why not hold a mother accountable when she negligently or knowingly harms the fetus inside of her (outside the context of an abortion)? (talk) 18:58, 10 December 2014 (UTC)
Whole lot of fallacies here. Let's go through them:
  • When something is disallowed by the law, the ramifications are mostly just that the action is discouraged...
Well, no; the law does actually have to be enforced & you've already suggested that's what you want. The 'deterrent' principle of punishment, something perennially used to prop up the death penalty, is pretty dubious & there's not much evidence it really works that way.
  • the action is discouraged through the threat of punishments and that a foundation is solidified for public disapproval of the action.
Isn't there already public disapproval of drinking heavily during pregnancy? Isn't having a disabled child when it's preventable already a deterrent? Do you really think somebody who is unconcerned about these things will be influenced by the existence of fetal personhood laws?
  • Surely if anyone besides the mother assaulted the fetus it would be considered a crime...
Yes, it would be a crime against the mother since it would be an assault on her body. In jurisdictions that already have fetal personhood laws, it may be considered a double assault with the fetus as an additional victim.
  • so why not hold a mother accountable when she negligently or knowingly harms the fetus inside of her (outside the context of an abortion)?
Why the distinction? If you attribute to the fetus a right not to be harmed, how can this not extend to a right not to be killed? I don't know of anywhere with laws like this (allowing abortion but forbidding other fetus-harming behaviours during pregnancy) or how such a distinction could be defensible, either legally or morally. ЩєазєюіδWeaselly.jpgMethinks it is a Weasel 22:15, 10 December 2014 (UTC)
"Whole lot of fallacies"? Disagreeing with some of my claims doesn't mean that I stated fallacious things.
"The 'deterrent' principle of punishment, something perennially used to prop up the death penalty, is pretty dubious" Isn't one of the main goals of making a certain act illegal to reduce the occurrence of that act? The 'capitalness' of capital punishment may fail to deter most criminals in major ways, but I imagine there's at least some difference compared to a complete lack of punishments for heinous crimes.
"Isn't having a disabled child when it's preventable already a deterrent?" There are in fact some people who would prefer children that are disabled in a certain way; people with Münchausen by proxy for example, or a couple that shares a certain disability and wants their child to be 'like them'.
"Yes, it would be a crime against the mother since it would be an assault on her body. In jurisdictions that already have fetal personhood laws, it may be considered a double assault with the fetus as an additional victim." Obviously in many cases where the fetus is assaulted, the mother would be assaulted as well, but the fetus isn't actually inherently part of her body. A tapeworm wouldn't be considered part of someone's body because it's inside of them either. I'm talking about damage being done to the fetus alone. If the mother intends to give birth to and raise her child, surely it'd be immoral if someone harmed her baby, in utero or ex utero, personhood or no personhood.
"Why the distinction? If you attribute to the fetus a right not to be harmed, how can this not extend to a right not to be killed?" Why? Because I'm not arguing for fetal personhood here. The fetus's right not to be harmed is dependent on whether or not it survives to be an actual person someday. If it's harmed but survives, it can grow up to be a person that suffers daily because of the consequences of the damage inflicted on them prenatally. If it dies, accidentally or intentionally, the result is obviously that it never gets to develop into a victimized person.
"I don't know of anywhere with laws like this (allowing abortion but forbidding other fetus-harming behaviours during pregnancy)" Many US states have laws matching your description. (talk) 15:31, 11 December 2014 (UTC)
To clarify, it doesn't matter if the harm was intentional or an accident? EmeraldCityWanderer (talk) 17:10, 11 December 2014 (UTC)
Of course that matters. Where did I give the impression that it wouldn't? (talk) 17:23, 11 December 2014 (UTC)
A couple of things. The last paragraph gives the impression (such as specifying accidentally or intentionally), and that while claims of mothers being prosecuted for accidents are supposedly extreme cases no desire to change/amend the law to stop it seems to be addressed. In later entries those abuses are just blamed on overzealous authorities (briefly abusive authorities and pro-(prenatal)-life fanatics) that still have the right to do so based on the language of the law. With requests that examples of how it is working right being ignored. EmeraldCityWanderer (talk) 17:55, 11 December 2014 (UTC)
That last paragraph refers to the fetus quite logically losing the rights based on its assumed future personhood upon its death, however that death may come about. It quite clearly wasn't referring to the specific fetal-harm-doing that I'm suggesting of making unlawful. And indeed, I haven't yet responded to your post at the bottom of the section that focuses on the situation in the US, a focus which wasn't explicitly present in Weaseloid's post, the post that I was just now replying to. (talk) 18:32, 11 December 2014 (UTC)
Well, it's not really very clear what criteria of harm you are trying to argue. I like using the US as an example because there is a decent sample size of where it has been applied (~200 cases), a good record of why it is being used, and what the consiquences have been. Also you have not given an alternative venue to use as an example except that it is not what anyone has said so far. You have also not stated what is wrong with the laws in the US vs elsewhere except the over-zealous enforcement of it...which you dodged again when I asked above.
This might be better to be in a debate so you can cleary define what you want, what you mean, and the desired intention. All you seem to be doing is going off in 10 different directions when people ask for clarification. EmeraldCityWanderer (talk) 19:43, 11 December 2014 (UTC)
"I'm talking about damage being done to the fetus alone." Give an example.
"The fetus's right not to be harmed is dependent on whether or not it survives to be an actual person someday." How can an entity's rights in the present be determined by what happens to it in the future? Your argument would make a woman who drinks heavily during pregnancy a criminal if it causes fetal alcohol syndrome but blameless if it induces a miscarriage. ΨΣΔξΣΓΩΙÐWeaselly.jpgMethinks it is a Weasel 18:11, 11 December 2014 (UTC)
What I meant by that first sentence was "I'd like you to consider the fetus separately from the mother and consider the possibility of damage being done to the fetus alone" to be clear on that. As for actual examples, I think various methods of abortion clearly demonstrate that it's possible to damage the fetus without harming the mother.
And yes, that would indeed be a perhaps counter-intuitive result of this argument. But remember, we're working on the assumption that abortion, i.e. ending a pregnancy and at the same time killing the fetus with the mother's consent, is morally permissible. This automatically means that any inherent or prospective rights the fetus may have are secondary to the mother's right to have an abortion. And I don't see why a mother can't be allowed to end her own pregnancy if she can do so safely. Admittedly, drinking lots of alcohol isn't exactly a preferable method for executing an abortion. (talk) 19:16, 11 December 2014 (UTC)
So your example of a crime against a fetus which doesn't harm the mother is an abortion. And yet you claim to be working on the assumption that abortion is morally permissable?
I agree with you that "any inherent or prospective rights the fetus may have are secondary to the mother's right to have an abortion". But I would go further and suggest that "any inherent or prospective rights the fetus may have are secondary to the mother's rights". Full stop. Either she has full sovereignty over her own body (as the pro-choice movement argues) or the fetus has a stronger right to her body than she does (as the pro-life movement argues). Trying to combine both positions in a strange kind of hierarchy of rights as you're doing just makes for a lot of strange loopholes & contradictions. The mother has a right to abort the pregnancy but not to drink (unless she drinks enough to abort the pregnancy). The fetus has a right to be able-bodied but not a right to life. WèàšèìòìďWeaselly.jpgMethinks it is a Weasel 20:10, 11 December 2014 (UTC)
Come now, don't go the simplistic either one extreme, or the polar opposite route. If the fetus has any rights at all, even merely prospective ones that the mother can take away if she wants to, as I'm positing in this case, then there has to be a point where the fetus's right to not unnecessarily suffer irrepairable damage overrules some of the mother's very minor rights. Exactly which rights are to be considered minor enough to be overruled can be a matter of contention, of course, but to deny that any alternatives besides the two extremes might exist because one such alternative has counter-intuitive ramifications is just fallacious. (talk) 20:59, 11 December 2014 (UTC)
Weaseloid has a point. Your theory is that it should illegal to harm a fetus unless you decide to end its life (abortion). I don't know any situation where no harm is allowed unless it involves ending a life. Except maybe industrial livestock operations, which I am not saying is correct just it's the only example that seems to be analogus, but seems pretty disrespectful to the idea of human life beginning at conception. Also from above: And indeed, I haven't yet responded to your post at the bottom of the section that focuses on the situation in the US can I have an idea when? Just wondering since it's a busy time for many people. EmeraldCityWanderer (talk) 15:26, 12 December 2014 (UTC)
Thanks for bringing up animals. Animals often get summarily euthanized/slaughtered/destroyed without any concern for a supposed "right to life" they might have. Some reasons for such killings (e.g. to free the animal from continued suffering, to protect society from dangerous animals, to protect the ecosystem) are more moral than others (e.g. because their presence annoys some people, so we can eat them, for entertainment). Yet society does provide laws that protect animals from cruel treatment. If animals can have rights without being acknowledged as having a right to life, why is it so hard (for some) to imagine that the same might apply to human beings that lack sentience/personhood? And to be clear, the only right I've so far been arguing for is the right of a person to not be burdened with a permanently damaged body through the (non-accidental) actions of another. This right entails that the person's body should be treated respectfully not only when one can speak of personhood, but also before the body in question is identified as belonging to a full-fledged person.
As for replying to your other posts, I'll try to write a comprehensive response to the things I haven't addressed yet a bit later. Though it might be helpful if you explain what "10 different directions" I've allegedly gone off into, because I think I've been arguing for the same thing quite consistently. (talk) 23:51, 12 December 2014 (UTC)
I don't see the point in inflicting punishment, jail time or financial, on new mothers. Mothers have also been prosecuted and jailed for opting not to follow doctor’s orders (bed rest/C-sections), forced to have medical procedures, charged with murder for miscarriages, charged for abuse after falling down, and having a detectible amount of cigarette smoke/alcohol/pot. Even for drug users that have gotten pregnent it gives the grim options of seeking help (and being jailed for a felony), stop using (with a much higher chance of fatal complications to one or both), or keep using and pray you aren't tested. The ideal might seem like it is in the best interests of kids...while the use of it so far has been devastating to families. It's a completely fucked up concept for people who are pro-family. EmeraldCityWanderer (talk) 19:54, 10 December 2014 (UTC)
I think the examples you cite are certainly an undesirable extreme, but that doesn't mean that a complete lack of punishments for fetal abuse is the answer. There are other options besides "complete denial of mothers' rights" and "legalization of all forms of fetal abuse". (talk) 20:06, 10 December 2014 (UTC)
No, it's called "people who know fuck-all about the real world think it sounds like a good idea, even when it works out as really horrible whenever it's tried." That is, it sounds like a false dilemma, but it keeps ending up as an actual one - David Gerard (talk) 20:11, 10 December 2014 (UTC)
If you confine the real world to the USA, sure. Not all nations in the world are rampant with abusive authorities and pro-(prenatal)-life fanatics, though. (talk) 20:48, 10 December 2014 (UTC)
The single worst first world nation for mother choice is right next door to you guys, though. Ikanreed (talk) 20:59, 10 December 2014 (UTC)
I'm not British, and I wasn't saying that these problems only exist in the USA, but it seemed like Gerard was arguing that laws against fetal abuse are inherently wrong because they've repeatedly led to considerable human rights abuses while ignoring the relevance of regional prevalence of abusive authorities and pro-life fanatics in said human rights abuses. (talk) 21:09, 10 December 2014 (UTC)
Yeah, okay. Both the thing you said, and the thing I said can be true at the same time. I phrased it as a disagreement, and I need not have. Ikanreed (talk) 21:47, 10 December 2014 (UTC)
(EC) Laws that undermine a person's ownership of her own body because of the alleged rights of her unborn child/fetus are already authoritarian and pro-life in nature. & There's a good case for seeing such laws as a human rights abuse in principle, regardless of what abuses do or don't result from their enforcement. WẽãšẽĩõĩďWeaselly.jpgMethinks it is a Weasel 21:49, 10 December 2014 (UTC)
I look forward to your examples of such laws working out the way you claim they could, because all we have is examples of such laws working out the way they actually do - David Gerard (talk) 21:50, 10 December 2014 (UTC)
Same here. The examples I provided are how it is being used for the ~200 cases it has been applied in the US. Also, even if they are extreme cases...those actions are still being done and the law hasn't been changed to prevent that. Even in the new laws for fetal personhood that have been introduced. It sounds like that is how the law is intended to operate. EmeraldCityWanderer (talk) 23:14, 10 December 2014 (UTC)

[edit] The Phoenix shooting

The police officers shouldn't be shooting an unarmed man, but there has been some confusion on his possessions, which could've been the polices' (weak) reasons for the shooting. But anyway, if the Washington Post is correct, the story is sketchy. Brisbon has drugs according to the police, fast food according to the observers. Either way, Brisbon shouldn't have been shot, but I'm wondering if the drugs thing is a smear to the victim. So, my revert was on my confusion on this whole thing. :( LEFTYGREENMARIO 07:31, 7 December 2014 (UTC)

He had marijuana. However, it was medical marijuana and he had a medical marijuana card, facts that have been conveniently left out of most of the stories. I've yet to see anything about whether or not the gun in the car was legally registered to him or not(not sure how long that takes). Interesting how they're working hard to smear him already. AyzmoCheers 17:49, 7 December 2014 (UTC)

[edit] I don't like Dawkins much anymore

But in a world where talk show hosts ask what evolution has to say about gay marriage, he can come off as comparatively enlightened. I disagree with his assertion that they should study Darwinism to understand the problem with it, though. People should maybe study Hobbes, instead. Not enough people are familiar with The Leviathan. Ikanreed (talk) 21:03, 8 December 2014 (UTC)

My thought on it was that conservatives are going to run around with that quote about going against Darwin as claiming Dawkins is no longer a "Darwinist"(buzz word for evolution). I can just see it on CP now. AyzmoCheers 21:47, 8 December 2014 (UTC)
His actual opinion seems to be very close to my own. Behaviors we are primed for by evolution present problems. This is especially a problem if you want a society in which sex role expectations and suspicion of outsiders are minimized. It probably is a good idea to work towards such a society. Those who do need to know what they're up against; and too often, but unwisely, prefer to place faith in hypotheses in which evolutionary influence on human behavior is minimized. - Smerdis of Tlön, for the defense. 06:08, 9 December 2014 (UTC)
I still quite like him. He can be a bit hot-headed and inflammatory at times, but he's a sound intellectual and unquestionably on "our side". Some of the sexism stuff got blown a little out of proportion, and I think it was more pride and defensiveness on his part than actual bigotry. As for the accusations of islamophobia, I frankly agree with most of what he's said.(Agrajag (talk) 16:04, 9 December 2014 (UTC))
Oh, it's totally fair to treat him as a fallible human being with useful insight sometimes. That's really the most anyone can really ever be, but that doesn't mean I have to approve of making poorly thought out sarcastic attacks on people who've hurt no one. "Dear Muslima" was a pretty awful thing to do, and he's never apologized for it. Ikanreed (talk) 17:02, 9 December 2014 (UTC)
He has apologised for "Dear Muslima" [1] (talk) 13:07, 16 December 2014 (UTC)
How would Hobbes be any better? Nebuchadnezzar (talk) 17:33, 9 December 2014 (UTC)
The beginning of Leviathan talks about how shitty the "natural state" is as far as governance goes. It's a better take-down of social Darwinism as an idea than any book about evolution. Hobbes makes the quite reasonable assertion through the book that structuring a society to avoid those problems is a good thing. Any argument to how nature is with regards to how society should be is quite handily deconstructed through his arguments. That doesn't mean I endorse everything the book stands for: democracy works better than tyranny, e.g. Ikanreed (talk) 18:46, 9 December 2014 (UTC)
My recollection (it's been ages) is that Hobbes argues that fear of violent death is what drives people to form political societies for mutual security. Hobbes's true opposite is Rousseau, who thinks that people are naturally virtuous and only become violent by bad upbringing. Evolution dissents from both of these positions. It suggests that there's never been such a thing as a Hobbesian state of nature since the emergence of the apes. Against Rousseau, it points out that much human behavior is innate, including the capacity for lies and violence. - Smerdis of Tlön, for the defense. 23:07, 9 December 2014 (UTC)
Hobbes' philosophy predates natural selection as a science. We can forgive him a few simplifications. Ikanreed (talk) 17:51, 10 December 2014 (UTC)
@SOT: That is completely true, and why state of nature arguments are bullshit. There never was a state of nature. Nebuchadnezzar (talk) 00:05, 11 December 2014 (UTC)
Boo! Human nature is a real thing, even if it isn't simple and deterministic like Hobbes implied. Ikanreed (talk) 15:21, 11 December 2014 (UTC)
Human nature is not the same as the state of natura. Nebuchadnezzar (talk) 18:08, 11 December 2014 (UTC)
My understanding is that Hobbes's "state of nature" is a hypothetical state of universal warfare of "all va. all". Humans, and just about all of our closest primate relatives, have always banded together in social units whose purpose is mutual survival. - Smerdis of Tlön, for the defense. 19:01, 11 December 2014 (UTC)
It's relevant that, for all the annoyance his idiotic tweets cause the more enlightened variety of skeptic and atheist, Dawkins is still the Atheist as far as the religious are concerned; even quite moderate, mainstream and intellectual types like the liberal end of the Church of England. I hear fake and ridiculously out-of-context Dawkins quoting from these people lots and lots. He's still the big target to their thinking. (Basically 'cos they really don't have an answer to the fundamental claim of The God Delusion, that God as a coherent hypothesis is ridiculously unlikely. But YMMV of course, the logic-chopping a smart Christian can manage is truly stupendous.) - David Gerard (talk) 17:54, 9 December 2014 (UTC)
Yeah, that's why I don't actively decry him either. Being a target for fundies with an axe to grind means that I don't need to be adding any fuel to the fire. Ikanreed (talk) 18:46, 9 December 2014 (UTC)

[edit] Calling theater chains "cowards" for pulling The Interview

... is easy to say when you didn't work at a movie theater the day after the Dark Knight Rises shooting. Do you really think artistic expression is more important than safety? Abed Nadir (talk) 20:35, 18 December 2014 (UTC)

I think people consider them cowards mostly because they "let the terrorists win". Of course, some people do consider freedom of expression more important than protecting people's lives, though I wouldn't count myself among those people. (talk) 20:38, 18 December 2014 (UTC)
Giving in to empty threats is a great way to promote injustice. Hell, giving in to legitimate threats is too. Policies against negotiating with terrorists don't come from nowhere. I mean, this really is letting a dictator call the shots about their own image. Ikanreed (talk) 20:44, 18 December 2014 (UTC)
It's understandable that theatres are worried about security issues and wouldn't want to show it. That isn't the problem, and I just updated the outdated WIGO. What is is that Sony just cancelled the entire release (no online version or DVD) which is not only "beyond the realm of stupid" but ensures that the film is eventually going to leak. Osaka Sun (talk) 21:45, 18 December 2014 (UTC)
Thanks for starting this thread so I didn't have to. It seems that when some internet troll gives someone death threats, it's a huge deal and that person should definitely cancel whatever they're doing (the Anita Sarkessian thing that happened a while back, for example). But of course when a hacker representing a hostile Nation State threatens to murder hundreds of people, you're suddenly a coward if you pull the movie.TheriziπosaurusG (talk) 22:34, 18 December 2014 (UTC)
While you're accurately describing a lot of hypocrites on the Internet, the chilling effect is concerning in both cases. Osaka Sun (talk) 22:45, 18 December 2014 (UTC)
I absolutely agree that the chilling effect is a serious problem and that we need to address this going forward. But I do think that in the short term at least, Sony did the right thing. Abed Nadir (talk) 22:52, 18 December 2014 (UTC)
If I were Sony, I'd release the film on Bittorrent, and figure out a way to make it plausibly seem either that the "Guardians of Peace" did it, or that some other warez group did it by hacking the GoP. - Smerdis of Tlön, for the defense. 03:04, 19 December 2014 (UTC)
I would not be at all surprised if Sony were using it as an excuse to bury what looks like a truely abysmal film. AMassiveGay (talk) 10:24, 19 December 2014 (UTC)
even if the '9-11 style attack' is not credible, they did get hacked pretty badly (again, but thats a different story). Perhaps its a repeat of that they fear. AMassiveGay (talk) 10:32, 19 December 2014 (UTC)
Given the nature & origin of the hacking & the threat, I doubt that Sony is taking this decision independently & without appropriate guidance from either whatever official agencies are involved in investigating the matter (FBI/CIA?) or from other experts on terrorism. Branding them as cowards seems rather shortsighted. WěǎšěǐǒǐďWeaselly.jpgMethinks it is a Weasel 13:45, 19 December 2014 (UTC)
Poor Sony, I do feel sorry for them. They are always so careful not to hack, threaten or censor others. — Unsigned, by: / talk / contribs 14:43, 19 December 2014‎
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