Monday, October 02, 2006

America Tolerates...

...a hell of a lot, actually.

1) We tolerate freedom of speech from anyone inside our borders to start. We tolerate the right to agree with, disagree with, believe in, don't believe in, mock, deride, condone, lambaste, excuse, disregard, forgive, excoriate, flay, pardon, overlook, smear, castigate, ignore, forgive, or whatever your favorite verbiage is to any paticular issue.

We do not tolerate our local, state, federal, or foreign governments/groups dictating to us what we may or may not say, mock, deride, support, overlook, forgive, ignore, believe in, etc.

2) We tolerate the freedom to own weapons which ties in with the 4th Ammendment as explained..

Yes, this causes one hell of a hoopla every time Something bad happens™ related to firearms. What a lot of people fail to realize is that most firearms used in the commission of a crime are obtained illegally. The call for further gun control always (sensibly) falls on deaf ears as a result. There is zero sense in wasting time passing further laws on gun control when the guns mentioned are already illegal.

There is zero sense in passing laws outlawing guns that are legal because idiotic teens or criminals get their hands on them . Why? Because it's already illegal for them to posess these weapons! Yet they get their hands on them. Yes, it's true. Instead of focusing government efforts on banning these weapons, why not focus on putting that monetary resource to closing down the black market for them? That means less money to the politicians and more to the cops. What a novel idea...let the cops try to do their job and limit funds to government to what will do the most good.

If banning of "arms" ever passes in the US as it did in Britain, the next step will be to outlaw souveniers that are "dangerous." How many folks in this country have something like a Samurai sword mounted on the wall? Quite a few, I'd wager. What about a paring knife? Want that banned? It could easily be used to slit a throat or stab an attacker, after all. How about something like the stick that I have? It's pretty stout and if anyone broke into my place, I'd beat the attacker senseless with it. Oh, the horror!! The blunt trauma might even kill the dumbshit who encroached upon my home intending to do harm.

Yes, simple theft is harm to the victim...and it's against the constitutional right to own property. "The right of the people to be secure in their persons, houses, papers, and effects, against unreasonable searches and seizures..." Isn't "simple theft" covered there? Oh, but it really means the GOVERNMENT can't do the deed, right? Correct. They may not without probable cause. But it also means a criminal also may not do the deed without potentially dire consequences since he clearly has no probable cause. I'd call a burglar stealing something an "unreasonable seizure."

Bottom line...The 2nd ammendment exists to allow for the common people to defend themselves against any type of tyranny. Be it government or criminal activity.

3) We tolerate feeding/quartering our troops at our discretion.

We love our troops but won't stand for military orders to deprive us of our homes. I will happily tolerate, quarter and even cook for any of our troops if the current world war ever forces us to entrench ourselves behind two oceans, but since that isn't about to happen in my lifetime, it's a moot point. I seriously love you guys and gals; but if you want a home cooked meal, you have to ask me, not try to force me.

4) We tolerate lawful search and seizure.

If it be unlawful, it's not going to happen (if it does, color yourself a rich man/woman). If you hate America and advocate our destruction loudly within our borders, as long as you do not violate actual law in America, you are protected against our "fascist government" seizing your property. Sometimes, it sickens me to realize that our Constitution also applies to visitors whose ultimate intent is to cause harm within our borders. But what can be done without repealling the 4th Ammendment which will never happen and I would never want to see happen.

5) We tolerate the ability for a defendant to flip the bird to a judge and say nothing. Let the state prove their case! I wholeheartedly support this, and invoking the 5th ammendment should never be a determining factor in a jury decision. What if the defendant, while not guilty as charged was forced to incrimiate himself in something that he's not charged with and then subsequently gets charged with the new crime?

I'm sure a lot of folks would argue that, "he's guilty of something," or "he's hiding something;" but so what? Unless prosecutors can prove it beyond a reasonable doubt, he's a free man. How would you feel if in a position to invoke the 5th? Not guilty as charged, but guilty of something semi-related (as the charges go) that might come up.

Let's use an easy example. You're charged with drug trafficking (selling pot specifically). You never have nor ever will. But occasionally, you buy pot which you are not charged with posesseing, just trafficking. Want the jury to find out that occasionally you like to get stoned so they can convict you of at least something? Didn't think so.

That's why the 5th Ammendment exists. Unfortunately, it's often used as a precursor to guilt. As soon as someone invokes the 5th, the jury (and especially the media) assumes guilt. What if every defendant in every case in the nation decided to invoke the 5th all at one time? Suddenly, the number of convictions would skyrocket, not plummet. Not because of better detective work by the prosecution, but because of "perceived guilt."

6) Speedy trials for accused citizens. Ok, ok...not all of them are what an average person would call "speedy," but blame the defense counsel to which an accused is also entitled for at least some of the sloth in the court system. Defense councils spend an inordinate amount of time filing motions that a judge has to think over, thus delaying proceedings. In any event, overall, the justice system at least keeps moving along. There isn't a lot of languishing in prison with no trial like in many other nations.

Ohhhh... Quiet! Can you hear it? Here comes the Gitmo outcry. Tough. Those people were foreigners actively conspiring or actively involved with trying to kill US citizens. Our military got them because our police forces are limited to operating within our own borders.

Oh, so that entitles them to POW status, right? Nope. Nowhere in the Geneva Convention that people are constantly screaming the US is violating does it allow for Prisoner of War status for combatants that are not uniformed, not a part of an actual military organization and/or seek shelter amongst civilians. In fact, by the letter of the convention, those people could have been summarily executed as spies on the battlefield. We chose to capture instead of kill so we could obtain information. Make no bones about it...we chose to capture when we were within our Geneva Convention rights to summarily kill.

For those people clammoring for POW status and access to lawyers for the detainees, think about this: they are mutually exlusive. Give somebody POW status and guess what? No lawyer. How many POWs has the United States ever granted an attorney unless they are accused of a crime? None? Sounds about right. So make up your minds. You either want them termed POWs (which they have no legal right to) or you want them to have lawyers which they are going to get when tribunals start.

7) We tolerate lawsuits to address grievances against another person, organization or even the government. Far too many frivilous ones in my opinion, but we still tolerate them. Granted, the wording of the 7th Ammendment is quite archaic. 20 bucks? I know it was a lot back in the 1780s, but what American nowadays doesn't absolutely hemmorage $20 bills out of their pocket on a daily basis? At least the court system has evolved along with common sense in the regards of small-claims suits.

8) We tolerate citizens charged with crimes walking free on the streets with a psoting of bail money. We tolerate common criminals being held in jails without cruel and unusual punishment. How many other nations can say the same? Well, all of them, I guess. How many other nations actually live by their claims? Not many.

9) We tolerate rights not specifically granted to still exist. The right to go anywhere one pleases for example. If I feel like going to Hawaii, I don't need specific government permission. The right to live ones life as one chooses is another example. I can be a bum or an astronaut at my own choosing.

10) We tolerate the people deciding certain things for themselves. Police forces, for example. The people, through their elected representatives, ultimately decide how much power they have. That's just one example of the powers of the American citizen. Being a citizen myself, I take so many of them for granted that they are hard for me to put into simple words. It would probably take a foreigner to ask me lots of questions for me to even begin to ennumerate them.

Just thought of another thing that ties in with both the 9th and 10th Ammendments. The persent-day Minutemen. They are nothing but a group of volunteers actively patrolling our southern border and turning back illegal immigrants. Thankfully, there has been no reported bloodshed as of yet; but I'm sure that will happen eventually. What a mess that's going to be in the courts.

"You see, Judge...the feds are totally inept at protecting our southern border from illegal invasion, and the Constitution doesn't prohibit me from doing it; so what are you charging me with? Murder? Killing to stop a crime isn't murder, Judge. Especially since he assaulted me and it was self defense."

Yes, it's going to be one huge mess.

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