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18
6
Yes No
Debate Score:24
Arguments:23
Total Votes:26
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 Yes (15)
 
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BenWalters(1513) pic



Romney actively bullied a gay boy in Prep school: is this relevant now?

http://www.washingtonpost.com/politics/mitt-romneys-prep-school-classmates-recall-pranks-but-also-troubling-incidents/2012/05/10/gIQA3WOKFU_story.html

John Lauber, a soft-spoken new student one year behind Romney, was perpetually teased for his nonconformity and presumed homosexuality. Now he was walking around the all-boys school with bleached-blond hair that draped over one eye, and Romney wasn’t having it.

“He can’t look like that. That’s wrong. Just look at him!” an incensed Romney told Matthew Friedemann, his close friend in the Stevens Hall dorm, according to Friedemann’s recollection. Mitt, the teenaged son of Michigan Gov. George Romney, kept complaining about Lauber’s look, Friedemann recalled.

A few days later, Friedemann entered Stevens Hall off the school’s collegiate quad to find Romney marching out of his own room ahead of a prep school posse shouting about their plan to cut Lauber’s hair. Friedemann followed them to a nearby room where they came upon Lauber, tackled him and pinned him to the ground. As Lauber, his eyes filling with tears, screamed for help, Romney repeatedly clipped his hair with a pair of scissors.

His apology:

“Back in high school, I did some dumb things, and if anybody was hurt by that or offended, obviously I apologize for that,” 

Yes

Side Score: 18
VS.

No

Side Score: 6

I feel like an ass for tangenting about marijuana dispensaries on this debate, so my apologies BenWalters, and I'll actually post on topic, now:

I think it's always relevant to look at how someones past may influence or color their decisions in the present. I don;t think everyone should be forced to live down every mistake they ever made in high school forever, but in regards to this particular mistake I feel two things. One, that homophobic bullying is indicative of an underlying, irrational prejudice, one that doesn't shake off easily and one that is fairly consistent with Romney's actions and positions today. Two, that this wasn't some inconsequential, victimless mistake - like developing a coke habit for a while - and this wasn't some high school drama people invariably grow out of. This was a malicious act of violence carried out solely by Romney against another human being to sate some kind of phobia. I think this particular issue is relevant to note when judging someones character (especially one campaigning for president), more so than most of the garbage the media digs up on famous peoples pasts.

Side: Yes
1 point

It's relevant to show that Romney, in High School, did bully type things.

Just how it's relevant to show that Obama, after High School, did coke, hung out with a known terrorist, married a woman who wasn't proud of her country until he got nominated, called an anti-white and anti-american preacher his "mentor," and chose a VP who said he would fail.

Just as relevant.

Side: Yes
BenWalters(1513) Disputed
1 point

Why do you feel it necessary to defend Romney here? Attacking someone and cutting off their hair is much more than a 'bully type thing', it's showing he was an active leader in homophobic activities, and when you consider his continued homophobic policies, such an attack should not be underplayed.

Your argument is unrelated, and just makes you sound a little bitter. Romney is likely to restrict the effective freedom of Americans more than Obama, in my opinion, or do you really think he's substantially different? You don't have to support him, just because you agree with some of what he claims to support.

Side: No
ThePyg(6737) Disputed
1 point

Why do you feel it necessary to defend Romney here?

I wasn't...

Attacking someone and cutting off their hair is much more than a 'bully type thing', it's showing he was an active leader in homophobic activities,

I've seen worse ways that people have been bullied in High School. I'm not saying Romney was in the right, but "active leader in homophobic activities" turns it into something more than what it was... picking on the weird kid. I was a weird kid, I've been picked on for the way I dressed, and if it wasn't for my violent outbursts at some people, I probably would have been the victim of assault much close to what that kid went through.

So I feel bad for him, and I'm no fan of Romney. But to make it out to seem that he was some kind of Klan leader out to persecute the gays is... eh.

Romney is likely to restrict the effective freedom of Americans more than Obama, in my opinion, or do you really think he's substantially different?

I believe that Obama has restricted more freedoms than Bush, and that Romney will most likely do the same things that Obama has done and will do.

You don't have to support him, just because you agree with some of what he claims to support.

I support neither Obama nor Romney. To me they are both terrible choices. I'm an advocate of Gary Johnson, a third party candidate.

Obama has granted himself the ability to detain and torture Americans without due process. He has forcefully closed down all dispensaries in California. He continued the Patriot Act. He bombed Libya, worsened the situation in Pakistan and Afghanistan.

I do not expect Romney to do any better and I do NOT support him.

Side: Yes

Very well said. Who gives a fuck about Romney being mean to a classmate in grade school? Just as you said, Obama has done just as many poor tasted things in his life, if not way more.

Side: Yes
Sitara(11082) Disputed
1 point

Romney assaulted another human being over something that the victim cannot help. I am bisexual. Would you be this flippant if Romney or someone else did this to me?

Side: No
ThePyg(6737) Disputed
1 point

I have been picked on from time to time back in Elementary, Middle, and High School. I learned to defend myself and be really witty.

And I'm not much concerned with whether you're bullied or not. Surely it's something to consider that Romney did this, but compared to Obama... not that big a deal.

Side: Yes
Qkey30(5) Disputed
1 point

NO it was a long time ago, it is not relevant, it is the left spiting heirs and saying WE want anyone with Traditional Views to be Stigmatized and Silenced no matter what their First Amendment Rights are.

Side: No
1 point

Hell yes, it is relevant !

Side: Yes
1 point

I believe everything is relevant, but what I am not sure is the weight of this among all other things in the mix. Yes, it should be a factor.

Side: Yes
1 point

It says a lot about what he was like as a child, and it is possible that he carries this attitude to adulthood. His current attitude, no matter what it is, makes it relevant.

Side: Yes
1 point

Yes this is relevant now because Romney is most likely still the same way he was as a kid.

Side: Yes
1 point

Of course, if someone grows up with that sort of mindset, it will effect him as an adult!

Side: Yes
1 point

This is an interesting question. Who is to say what is relevant? When there's a presidential election almost everything is relevant.(unfortunately) Whatever you want to be relevant is relevant because we choose people we like(and vice verse) here in america. For whatever reason it may be.

For example I was in Michigan and I heard people say "Oh I like Mitt Romney he's a Michigan native". What does that have to do with his policy? That's just the way it is.

Now what's funny is how hard everyones having to try to get dirt on him. I mean there's this and what- the thing with his dog on the car? o.0

So if you would ask me if this is relevant to Mitt Romney's policy I'd probably say no. I doubt that means that he would actively discriminate anyone while in office. That's clearly a landslide argument fueled by the bias of those who dislike Mitt.

Side: Yes

Because it demonstrates the man's character in relation to Gay Rights.

Side: Yes
1 point

is the fact that it happened relevant? no, it's not, i do not support romney in any way, but childish actions from a young person cannot haunt them forever. we are all guilty of some sort of immature actions that we may not be proud of. what IS relevant is his response to the accusations. the way he laughs when asked about it is just creepy, who laughs when asked about committing an assault? plus to me it screams liar when you say "i don't remember that, but i don't think he was gay". which is it you dont remember or you do remember that he wasnt gay? so no, the action itself is not relevant, but his response today is relevant to his character after having grown up.

Side: No
1 point

The family of the boy who was supposedly bullied denies he was gay, and the Washington Compost has had to back off most of the story, so no it isn't relevant. It was a political hit piece by leftist hacks and unworthy of anything but a tabloid.

Side: No