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I imagine we probably have a great deal to agree on when it comes to the energy/global warming crisis. Certainly, more needs to be invested in it, as well as toward many other avenues of science and progress. I want to live to see us go to Mars, I do hope that NASA will get off of their asses soon. If anything, we owe the next generation just one major advancement in science and technology that isn't rooted in war.
I definitely want to hear your immigration plan. However, how do we balance this with 1) keeping security threats outside of our borders, such as cartels or guerrilla fighters (such as ELM, which has lately taken to recruiting Venezuelan refugees in Colombia). 2) Are we sure we can accomplish this without a situation such as in the EU, where countries have greater power in other countries' legislation? For instance: Mexico sees the influx of guns into its country from the US as a major concern. This is commonplace; there are many smugglers who run guns south and drugs north. By opening the borders as suggested, smuggling would become much easier, prices for guns would drop in Mexico and beyond, prices of drugs would drop in the US and Canada. Would Mexico try to lobby our congress to make changes not only to gun legislation but also any other legislation within their interests?
I also wouldn't mind hearing about your medicare for all plan, but I think the problem is far more complex than just firing the health insurance industry. Primarily, because the government can't do anything right, and isn't held accountable for what they pay for goods and services. Do I think basic lifesaving healthcare is a human right? Yes. And it disgusts me that we are- seemingly begrudgingly- held to the standards of the Geneva Convention and required by law to provide lifesaving care to prisoners of war, but we can't do the same for our own people. But if the government is simply going to foot the bill for everyone, that means a few important disadvantages. Primarily, hospitals will be able to charge whatever the hell they want- and as someone who routinely orders parts for military aircraft, I can assure you that when it comes to a price markup when the manufacturer stamps "PROPERTY OF US GOVERNMENT" on the side, the sky is the fucking limit. Ever gone to Home Depot and paid $10,000 for a flush head screw less than half an inch long made from no special metals or with any special manufacturing treatment? Because I have half a million dollars worth of those screws in a drawer at work, right now, in a compartment that's only a few cubic inches, that you paid for. And they break all the time (they hold the brake keys in place on the F18E/F main wheels). No one is answering for this. Why would I trust the same government that pay for these screws to wisely use my tax dollars to cover healthcare cost when they're not even going to look at the price tag? Especially when, frankly, the healthcare I get onboard my ship is full of idiots who do anything they can to avoid doing their jobs?
The second concern I have, is how much individual choice is removed from the healthcare system? If the government is paying for it, then presumably, they will have veto power over many important health care decisions. For instance, will families be able to choose whether their loved ones will be kept alive if they're in a coma?
There's quite a bit of nuance to go over in how a government would attempt confiscation. Unfortunately, we can see it on a small scale already in states like New Jersey, Maryland, and Florida that have passed so-called "red flag" laws. Already this is being abused, as kids who talk about the reality of shootings at school without making threats to anyone are pinned as sufficient cause to have their parent's firearms taken away. People are being killed by police in their own homes when they are served confiscation orders if they try to resist, because we now have systems in place in the US where anyone can anonymously point to someone they don't even have to prove they know, and say "he's a threat to himself or others". Typing that sentence literally makes me want to vomit.
This, obviously, is a serious violation of due process but on a small enough scale that no one is doing anything about it. I don't know why the NRA isn't jumping on this; I can't see it being upheld by the supreme court. My worry is that confiscation will happen slowly enough that by the time people realize just how screwed we are it will be too late, however, I'd like to think that it's not possible for this sort of thing to become routine without significant resistance.
On the subject of gun confiscation by the federal government, as you said, it would be far from out of the blue, and for that matter, nearly impossible. People accuse the NRA of not representing the people, but people are the secret behind the NRA's power: If the government starts to indicate that they wanted to move toward such a ban, 5 million+ members showing up to say "we'll vote someone else in to take your job" has a profound impact on elected officials. The NRA gets those people organized and notifies them when there's legislation on the table that's worthy of their attention.
But in the hypothetical situation of federal confiscation, as far as the military and what their role in such an event would be, I'm not convinced that we can call resisting that order "betraying their country". Betraying the government, sure. But as it says in the oath, loyalty is placed toward the constitution before it is placed toward following orders, and we are specifically trained to never follow an order that is unlawful. At the very least, the government would have to throw out the second, fourth, and fourteenth amendment to mobilize that sort of mass confiscation. Even if the constitution were amended to make such a thing legal it's very likely that many people would no longer recognize what would be left as being legitimate. It's a question of what percentage of the soldiers will see the order as unlawful, and how many of them will have the courage to resist. However, as in any war, it only takes a few soldiers to take that step before more get the idea. As more soldiers refuse their orders, it becomes that much easier for the next soldier to do the same. Outside of a state of war, these soldiers would be imprisoned, but if a state war is declared, many would very likely be put to death by firing squad. Such a system to control desertion is relatively easy to maintain when fighting an outside force, but when fighting a civil war- especially in this case, when so many people in the military are pro 2A- It's virtually impossible to just shoot every pro-gun service member. The military would completely tear itself apart if it tried, and what would be left would most likely see the government as the new enemy of the people.
Would people take up arms if trump is impeached?... I think a few would. But I don't see it being any kind of widespread phenomenon. Mainly the difference would be that there would not be the internal contention in law enforcement and military over the matter of orders vs. laws vs. morals. We support the president. I don't like the guy but I do it anyway no matter who's in charge, because that's the job. Thankfully I have not had any circumstance where I had to balance my orders against the law or what I believe to be right or wrong, and I hope I never have to. But I think I speak for most service members and police when I say that if extremists start losing their shit over a lawful impeachment, no one's going to have any moral issue with stopping whoever is causing unrest.
I say yes. Sexual education is important, but there are a lot of kids these days with no idea of what a healthy relationship looks like. They've been lied to all their life by the TV of the idea that they'll find "the one" and that everything will fall into place without effort. Fact is, if you walk into a relationship with that mindset, it's doomed to fail, because contrary to popular opinion, a good relationship takes a lot of work on both sides. On top of that, many people have no idea how to apply that effort, or what the warning signs for trouble are, or when to get out of a relationship that is toxic.
Ultimately, we need this for the same reasons we need classes on home economics, sexual education, firearm safety, and filing your taxes. Those being: unlike most of the things you learn in school, these are the things that you actually need and will use, and we often can't trust parents to teach this necessary information.
Difficult. Ultimately I support leaving out water, because illegal immigration is hardly a crime worthy of the death penalty. But with that said, the idea of tightening our borders in and of itself is not one without merit. If we simply have open borders, there exists little to no reason for political lines in the first place- without individual countries, all cultures will have rule of law forced upon them by every other culture. Furthermore, such would imply the existence of a centralized government which will simply not be able to have full influence on all corners of the globe, promoting lawless regions where the rule of government is in name only. All of this invites rebellion and secession, which means that the concept of individual countries, even national identity, is as much a part of the human psyche as war.
So we shouldn't simply erase borders, and if we have a border, then in some fashion it must be maintained. Frankly, I'm unconcerned with illegal immigration- there are simply more important things in the world to worry about- but the concept of added security is not without merit. After all, if just anyone can walk in with a dirty bomb in their backpack, that's a pretty major flaw in our national security that needs to be addressed, and not lost in the din of shouting "what about the children" and "build the wall" and "racist".
Hey- sorry for keeping you waiting. Shit happens when you're out to sea.
I agree with you that Gitmo is illegal. Those who are there need to be given fair, open trials now and if we can't do that, we need to ship them home. There's a lot of debate raging and bureaucracy surrounding it, but frankly I say fuck the paperwork and bulldoze that shit to the ground today. It was established extrajudicially, we can fucking end it extrajudicially.
I hold the same opinions on torture, and frankly, I'm not convinced that this problem isn't ongoing. I hate like hell that we have too many agencies without any form of checks and balances that are capable of basically whatever the fuck they want, whether it's torture, tapping your phone or putting you on a no fly list.
I do disagree with one thing in your interpretation of due process: asylum. I think a government is well within its right to close its borders partially or completely, to include shutting down asylum programs, if it chooses to. I think it isn't within it's right to do so for reasons that are directly racially motivated or otherwise designed to keep out a specific group, as we are seeing today, although exceptions can and must be made only if we are in a state of war as declared by congress (depending of course on the situation).
For the record: I am not saying we should shut down our asylum program. It is a basic function of human decency that we take in people who have no place else to go and fear for their safety. I am saying that it is well within any country's right to do so, even if I don't agree with it.
But on the subject of "person"- which, I agree with you, does not mean "citizen"- I have to bring up the 2nd (hey, it was a gun debate, after all).
A well regulated militia, being necessary to the security of a free state, the right of the people to keep and bear arms, shall not be infringed.
I love how this is worded, I really do. Especially the second half. Now, there's the obvious and oft repeated sentiment that of course the right of the people refers to an individual right, not the right of the militia (although, to argue otherwise is to argue that the government had to give itself the right to bear arms in the Constitution, which is a little nonsensical, but I digress). But it goes deeper than that. Note that it doesn't say something to the effect of "the citizenry are hereby granted the freedom to bear arms". Why is that important?
...the right of the people to keep and bear arms, shall not be infringed.
That doesn't give me the right to own a gun.
...the right of the people to keep and bear arms... is an acknowledgement of an inherent human right to fight for your life and freedom (note, also, the use of the word "people" here, not "citizen"). That can't be granted to you by a government, and frankly, to do it effectively you need a gun. ...shall not be infringed. is a only a guarantee (frequently broken) that the government will not interfere with that.
I guess we can agree to disagree on whether guns should be rounded up. I still maintain that taking away a weapon based on a person's responsibility with it should be done on an individual basis. For every one person that would use a gun to go out and kill someone, there's another thousand who use their firearms responsibly- we should punish the individual, not the majority.
I'm actually an E5. And as much as I bitch about the Navy and it's overly bureaucratic and PC policies, I'm happy to say that the son of a bitch you mentioned would never have made chief in today's Navy. Sure, there's still racism and homophobia and sexism and every other type of bigoted asshole, but they're always going to exist in some form or another. The best we can do is be vigilant and not give them positions of power. I'm glad you didn't shoot him, even if he deserved it. Sometimes the best vengeance is to think about everything you made of yourself despite their best efforts, things that they'll never have or experience. You became a pilot. That sad fuck had nothing but meaningless resentment, which is a horrible way to live, and now he's dead in the ground. Fuck him.
I'm also worried about the direction of this country. I'm worried that we're weakening ourselves by fighting a war without end. I'm worried that in order to rebrand ourselves and keep a steady influx of recruits we've suppressed effective training and become too PC. And I'm worried that a bored and uninformed voting public simply does not care anymore. I hope I'm wrong, and I hope we come to our senses and get out of the middle east.
Merry Christmas, happy Hanukah, peace, love & good whiskey.
PS I'm pretty sure they only give medals for the highest tier of pistol shot. It's been 58 years and we've switched weapon systems; somewhere along the line I'm sure that the scoring system for the marksman qualification course has changed a bit. So if you got a medal, you probably got what would equate to expert. And from what I've read, they didn't even teach you to use the sights on the old .45s, because the sights were next to useless.
Hello again Excon,
I'm realizing I should have made this into a perspectives debate instead of a for/against. Oh well.
You actually would have been in the Navy at the same time as my grandfather. He was an officer; apparently he got out in the spring of 1963 after he trained some of the Cuban refugees that were involved in the Bay of Pigs invasion in 1961. I never was able to ask about his service; he died before I was born. I do have his service record in my closet and the flag that was on his casket over my mantle (I inherited both when my dad died).
A little bit about me... I joined the Navy at 20, in 2012. I've been in about 6 1/2 years now, looking to get out at my 8 year mark. Met my wife in California, she was also in the Navy. Right now they've got me on a carrier. In the interest of maintaining anonymity for now, I'd prefer not to say which one. So far I haven't had the opportunity to deploy, but we'll be doing that before I get out.
I can't say I'm a fan of the current direction of our military. It is, unfortunately, not the same Navy of the 60's. Part of that is due to advances in technology, but part of that is due to bureaucracy and waste to the detriment of mission capability, and no defined objective, strategy or terms of victory in this ongoing war on terror. It's now legal for someone to join up who was born after 9/11 to fight and die in this war and no one has a plan, no one pays attention, and no one's ashamed of that. That's why I'm getting out, in a nutshell.
In terms of where we disagree, I do agree that if service members simply threw out their orders, the military would fall apart. But in swearing (or in my case, affirming) our oath, we stated that we would support and defend the Constitution of the United States before stating that we would follow all orders from those above us in the chain of command. We specifically were trained not to follow unlawful orders. I can think of no order more unlawful than to turn on the citizens of the United States and deprive them of what the Constitution guarantees, and I know I'm not the only one that thinks the same.
I'm Jonathan. Pleasure to meet you. I also have that medal for being an expert shot with a pistol, though I suppose that would have been with a Beretta rather than a 1911.