Anyone care to take over AACalc?


  • @Cmdr:

    Thomas Jefferson was not saying that church should have no sway over the affairs of government in his letter.  What he was saying was that there was a firmly established law/precedent that the government could not sanction a religion, interfere with a religion or have any other significant impact on religion (which is why Church status means you do not pay taxes) etc.  You see, the Baptists were concerned that Jefferson’s religious views would impact them negatively and he was trying to reassure them that there was a wall of seperation preventing the government from interfering in religious affairs.

    This has been twisted and distroted into a meaning it did not really convey.  Today it is taken to mean that church is barred from government, but government can interfere with church (ie, one cannot pray in school because it is a government institution and there is a wall of seperation preventing any religious activity from being performed on government property.)  This is in direct and blatant violation of what Jefferson meant.  Let us remember, Jefferson was a highly religious person, it was just of Deism and not religion. (Switch would really enjoy Jefferson’s religious standings.)

    Exactly.  Separation of church and state in the 1700’s never meant that the government should have nothing to do with religion.  Just look around in Washington D.C. at all the Biblical references etched in stone in many of our government buildings, including the Supreme Court.

    Yet it seems that an awful lot of people today think that the separation of Church and State means you can’t pray in school, can’t have a nativity scene in front of a courthouse, etc.  People also don’t understand what the freedom of speech, religion, the press, etc, means anymore.  It’s pathetic.

    Freedom of speech doesn’t mean you can say anything you want (don’t get caught talking about assassinating a government official).

    Anyway, in Iowa, it’s very simple.

    1. The government wouldn’t recognize a same-sex marriage (80’s and before), and neither would an insurance company.
    2. The legislature passed an act that said marriage is defined as being between a man and a woman (sometime in the 90’s) (which is like begging people to challenge it)
    3. Supreme Court of Iowa strikes down this law.  Somehow (don’t understand this part) that made same-sex marriages legally recognized in Iowa (legislature did not pass any laws to this effect, now or ever).

    My logical conclusion then is that our 7 Supreme Court judges somehow made it happen that same-sex marriages must be recognized in Iowa (right down to the Income tax law being changed).  This is not the function of the Judicial Branch, to effectively make new laws, especially laws that the majority of people in Iowa don’t want.

    54% of our voters voted to remove them from their jobs.  All 7 judges decided the same way, so we have 4 more to remove, when they come up for vote.  As someone said, this is extremely rare.  Well, our judges were extremely out of line, and they’re getting extreme treatment - fired directly by the voters.  This is a major victory for the people, and should be celebrated nationwide even by people who want legally protected same-sex marriages, because the people were actually able to directly influence their government - even the untouchable judicial branch.


  • @calvinhobbesliker:

    FYI, SOCAS does not mean that you can’t pray in public schools; only that the school can’t force someone to pray or lead in prayers. if a student want to pray, he or she must do so individually.

    Yes, I understand that, but I have students in my classrooms who felt forced out of public schools because people, including employees, pressured them not to pray in school.  So while the letter of the law says one thing, the effect has been to make people think that you shouldn’t pray in school at all.

    How long until they remove “In God we Trust” from all our money?  Who put it there in the first place?  Did they violate Sep of Church and State?  This just illustrates that these people are clueless as to what Sep of Church and State even means, and they are wreaking havoc on our society.  The vocal minority.


  • As far as my understanding, separation of church and state, when set up in the 1770’s, meant that the government would not set up a State Church, as they had in England.  Nothing more.


  • @gamerman01:

    @calvinhobbesliker:

    FYI, SOCAS does not mean that you can’t pray in public schools; only that the school can’t force someone to pray or lead in prayers. if a student want to pray, he or she must do so individually.

    Yes, I understand that, but I have students in my classrooms who felt forced out of public schools because people, including employees, pressured them not to pray in school.  So while the letter of the law says one thing, the effect has been to make people think that you shouldn’t pray in school at all.

    How long until they remove “In God we Trust” from all our money?  Who put it there in the first place?  Did they violate Sep of Church and State?  This just illustrates that these people are clueless as to what Sep of Church and State even means, and they are wreaking havoc on our society.  The vocal minority.

    I believe it was put there in 1863, probably to assert that God was on the North’s side in the Civil War. I think that motto should not be there(1/6 of Americans are atheists) but I’m not sure if it qualifies as a violation since it’s not forcing anyone to practice any religion.


  • @gamerman01:

    As far as my understanding, separation of church and state, when set up in the 1770’s, meant that the government would not set up a State Church, as they had in England.  Nothing more.

    The problem is that if you allow churches to influence government, you’ll essentially have a state church. Even if all religions/sects were represented equally, this would still make the government’s official position be that the religious are superior to the nonreligious.


  • @calvinhobbesliker:

    @gamerman01:

    As far as my understanding, separation of church and state, when set up in the 1770’s, meant that the government would not set up a State Church, as they had in England.  Nothing more.

    The problem is that if you allow churches to influence government, you’ll essentially have a state church. Even if all religions/sects were represented equally, this would still make the government’s official position be that the religious are superior to the nonreligious.

    I never said churches should influence government.

    The Government’s official position in 1776 was that religious is superior to nonreligious.  Just read the Constitution and Declaration.


  • @calvinhobbesliker:

    I believe it was put there in 1863, probably to assert that God was on the North’s side in the Civil War. I think that motto should not be there(1/6 of Americans are atheists) but I’m not sure if it qualifies as a violation since it’s not forcing anyone to practice any religion.

    Wasn’t sure how long it has been there - that is interesting.

    However, majority rules in Democracies, so 1/6 is not enough to take it off the money.


  • @gamerman01:

    @calvinhobbesliker:

    I believe it was put there in 1863, probably to assert that God was on the North’s side in the Civil War. I think that motto should not be there(1/6 of Americans are atheists) but I’m not sure if it qualifies as a violation since it’s not forcing anyone to practice any religion.

    Wasn’t sure how long it has been there - that is interesting.

    However, majority rules in Democracies, so 1/6 is not enough to take it off the money.

    I know it’s probably not coming off for a LONG time. However, I do see it as a little discriminatory. It sort of implies that the nonreligious are not “real Americans.”


  • @calvinhobbesliker:

    I know it’s probably not coming off for a LONG time. However, I do see it as a little discriminatory. It sort of implies that the nonreligious are not “real Americans.”

    :roll:

    Well maybe I think it’s discrimination that George and Abe get to be on TWO different pieces of money.  And why isn’t there a person of a minority race on money?  (Oh wait, actually, there is)

    And it’s not fair that FDR got 4 terms.  Life isn’t fair, Calvin.  And if someone doesn’t like how their money says “In God we trust” on it, I can help them with that.  Just give it all to me, and then you won’t be carrying it around any longer.


  • And you’re changing the subject.

    Do you not see my point, that our Iowa Supreme Court Judges acted outside the “sacred” separation of powers foundation that our Country’s laws are laid upon?  How they singlehandedly made Iowa the 3rd nation in the land to legalize gay marriage?  A team of 7 people making law, and a law that flew in the face of what the majority of Iowans even wanted??  Can you not see this?

  • 2007 AAR League

    One of the main functions of a constitution is to enshrine certain legal principles so that they are beyond the will of the majority.

    Arguably, this function is most important when it comes to minority rights, because minority rights will by definition otherwise be very vulnerable to derogation by the will of the majority.

    This in turn is something that I see as indispensable to the Freedom that Americans cherish so much. America is a beacon to the world of everyone being free to have and express their political views, their religious views, etc.

    As soon as the majority can decide to take away rights from a minority, then you have lost the foundation of your freedom.

    There is a limit to freedom of course - one cannot be allowed to harm others through the exercise of one’s freedom.

    And that, I think, is where the real issue about same sex marriage is found. Some thing that such marriage IS harmful to society, and others do not.

    Just back to my earlier point: if Germany in the 1930s had had a strong judiciary, and religious and minority rights enshrined in its constitution , and widespread respect for the rule of law (what is now missing in Afghanistan and is being lost in the US to bipartisan conflict), the holocast could not have happened. The courts, if they were doing their job, would have struck don the antisemitic laws, and the German people, if they had a proper understanding of the importance of minority rights and respect for the rule of law, would have supported that.

    Now - sex with children, with animals - those are harmful behaviours. Tolerating or recognizing consensual adult same sex relationships does not mean you also have to accept those things.

    Go to law school. It will change your mind.

  • '18 '17 '16 '11 Moderator

    Calvin:

    I do not feel that if you allow individuals to practice their religion, even if they are government employees, it will lead to a theocracy.  In my mind the entire idea seems ludicrous, but maybe I can explain why I feel as such.

    1)  Laws written to protect the interests of non-Christians (whether they be Jewish, Muslim or whatever) look great on paper.  However, due to the legislation that has happened over the years, from the Bench, what once protected people now punishes those who were supposed to have been protected against.

    ie: If I decide, as a teacher, to pray alloud in my homeroom, when students happen to be present, I will end up just as fired as if I had hung a cross on the wall and said anyone not a christian will get an F.

    Likewise, judges have been forced to take the 10 Commandments out of their courtrooms.  The city of Rolling Meadows, IL 60008 was forced to remove a cross from their town insignia.  The corss at Mt. Soledad, since it over looks public lands, has been routinely attacked and is, I believe, to this day still covered in a plywood box. All of this, and more and more and more, are results of certain individuals, thinking only of themselves (I believe) taking the words of President Jefferson out of context and using them to attack religion, instead of protecting both government and religion, and, by extension, our Natural Rights as human beings.

    Also, I think I should point out, we do not live in a democracy.  We live in a Democratic-Republic.  If we, say, were allowed to vote on every piece of legislation from our computers or at a polling office, then we would be a democracy.  But as it stands now, 261 Congressmen + 67 Senators + 1 President can over ride the will of the people and ignore millions of Americans - if they so choose.  There is no problem with this, per-se, since we can “vote the bastards out” every two years, what is the problem is when an Appealate Court Judge, or Federal Judge decides to change the law because they have a personal bias.  The problem is, we cannot vote those people out of office, like we can if our congressmen, senators and president do not listen to us. (Evidence: 11/2/2010, the American poeple declared with almost a unified voice that the country was moving in the wrong direction and ‘voted the bastards out’
    pretty universally across the nation.)


    Otherwise, I agree with frood.  The Constitution of the United States of America was and is established to protect the autonomy of the citizenry in this country and to establish a government that will continue this autonomy.

    The problem is not with the Constitution, it’s with certain individuals (elected or not) violating the Constitution and those individuals in power that allow this violation to continue without redress.

    Yes, there are certain things government has to do against the will of the people.  A poly-sci instructor for a class I was in liked to say “If you put 7 men and 1 woman in a room, they will vote to legalize rape.”  First, that’s patently not true.  Men have morals, even if it takes us women to make them realize that they have them.  Secondly, the government then, seeing a clear and evident threat to the autonomy of an individual and seeing that ending this threat would not adversely effect the autonomy of those attempting to rape the individual, would be morally, ethically and legally duty pound to step in and end the threat.

    But we are not talking about that, are we?  We are talking about one person thwarting the will of millions of people in clear violation of his or her sacred duty to do their job and only their job.  They were not elected Congressman.  They were not elected Senator.  They are no were near elected President!  Hell, even the Supreme Court needs 5 out of 9 justices to agree to change a law.  But one guy, in an unelected position, wholy protected from the wrath of the population he offends (in as much as he cannot be unseated by a challenger in an election) decides to change the law, even if the people change their state constitution, he or she decides to change the law anyway.

    That is unconstitutional and, being such, is by definition unAmerican.  Those individuals, in my opinion (and I believe the law, actually) should be arrested immediately and imprisoned.  Then all their rulings should be reviewed for anti-American bias by a panel of their peers before he is tried for his crimes. (You need to gather all the evidence.)

    If that were the case, there would be no more legislating from the bench.  Without legislating from the bench, people would have to change the law the legal way.  By getting enough congressmen, senators and maybe even the presidency on their side to legislate a new law to supercede the old law, to sign the new law into law and then enjoy the new law.  This is how the government was structured.  If the people decide they do not like the law, they can then unseat the congressmen, senators and maybe even the president, have the new crew change the law and sign it into law.  Or, the Constitution of the United States of America can be changed, like they did with Prohibition and repeal of Prohibition.


  • Okay, if we were to do what you say, what would be the purpose of the Judicial branch? By your reasoning, it would be unconstitutional to decide something that is against what the majority wants.

  • '18 '17 '16 '11 Moderator

    @calvinhobbesliker:

    Okay, if we were to do what you say, what would be the purpose of the Judicial branch? By your reasoning, it would be unconstitutional to decide something that is against what the majority wants.

    The purpose of the Judicial Branch (lower than the Supreme Court) would be to rule on whether or not a person broke the law and if so, what the punishment is to be.

    The purpose of the Judicial Branch (Supreme Court) is to determine if a law, broken by a person, is Constitutional or not.  They are not to change the law, alter the law or even run spell check on the law. If the law is unconstitutional, then it is immediately revoked and no law stands in its place.

    After this happens, if it happens, the Legislative Branch may go back and attempt to write the law again.  They may feel free to contact the Supreme Court to determine what was unconstitutional about the law and what, if anything, can be changed in the law to make it constitutional.  If the legislature then agrees to make these changes, they may write a brand new law and send it to the President who will then decide if it should be signed or vetoed. If vetoed, and enough congressmen and senators feel strongly about the new law, the veto can be over ridden and the whole kit and kaboodle can be repeated (if the new law is also unconstitutional, but one would hope the legislature would make any corrections needed or give up on the entire thing after the first ruling.)

    At no time should a judge ever give an unasked for opinion on a law.  It is not their job to determine what the law was supposed to say, or what it should say or even whether or not they want to agree with the law.  They are only there to determine if someon broke the law and if they did, what their punishment is. (Sometimes not even that, bigger cases are decided by juries and then the judge has only one job, determine the sentence of the convicted.)


  • @frood:

    One of the main functions of a constitution is to enshrine certain legal principles so that they are beyond the will of the majority.

    Arguably, this function is most important when it comes to minority rights, because minority rights will by definition otherwise be very vulnerable to derogation by the will of the majority.

    This in turn is something that I see as indispensable to the Freedom that Americans cherish so much. America is a beacon to the world of everyone being free to have and express their political views, their religious views, etc.

    As soon as the majority can decide to take away rights from a minority, then you have lost the foundation of your freedom.

    I wouldn’t argue with any of this.

    There is a limit to freedom of course - one cannot be allowed to harm others through the exercise of one’s freedom.

    And that, I think, is where the real issue about same sex marriage is found. Some thing that such marriage IS harmful to society, and others do not.

    Of course it’s harmful.  How could it not be.

    Now - sex with children, with animals - those are harmful behaviours. Tolerating or recognizing consensual adult same sex relationships does not mean you also have to accept those things.

    You’re right.  I could tolerate thievery or prostitution, but that doesn’t mean I tolerate murder.  Great point.  :roll:

    Go to law school. It will change your mind.

    Go to business school.  It will change your mind.  Go to med school.  It will change your mind.  Seriously, frood.

    Do you have $50,000 to give me and will you be able to give me a couple years of my life back?  Didn’t think so.  No thanks.  I learned enough law in general education to find my way around the constitution.  It’s bordering on offensive when you talk like we know nothing about the constitution.  I mean, OBVIOUSLY the constitution and our law is supposed to protect the minority from the majority.  When I said 1/6 isn’t enough to remove the “In God we Trust” saying, I didn’t mean that the majority can steamroll the minority in every aspect.  But the majority still does rule.  Except when you have 7 people out of 3 million who decide that gay marriage in Iowa should be a legal right, and they’re not in the legislature.  Once again, why don’t you acknowledge my point, by agreeing or disagreeing?  I just want to know if you guys think my reasoning is sound (that is, that the Iowa judges far exceeded their position and ability - basically, abuse of power).

  • '18 '17 '16 '11 Moderator

    Merriam-Webster defines sexual intercourse as:

    noun, involving penetration of the vagtia by the penis.

    Or, looking at the definition of coitus, by Merriam-Webster:

    physical union of male and female genitalia accompanied by rhythmic movements.

    And the definition of deviant, by Merriam-Webster is:

    departing from some accepted standard of what is normal.

    deviating especially from an accepted norm.

    By the above definitions, homosexuality, beastiality, pedephilia, necrophilia, sodomy, cunnilignus (sp?), etc, etc, etc… are all deviant (abnormal) behaviors.

    Now, some of them I personally agree with, however, we are not talking about what I agree with, we are referring to why the government (any government) has a moral and ethical duty to interfere with a non-deviant, socially acceptable status for no real benefit to one party and detriment to another party.

    Now, I have no problem - per se - with a government dictating that you can get a civil union with anything you want, your dog, your son, your mother, your best friend of the same gender, your marble boulder at the end of your driveway, your white picket fence, whatever.  I do not think anyone in the world really gives two hee-haws if the government allows this or not.  What people care about is taking a historically, and typically religious term and applying it to these unions.

    The only good solution to this problem, that is a win-win (in so much as gay people cannot sue a church because they refuse to perform the ceremony, or in that no one gets pissed off about it) is to require all parties interested in getting government recogonition of their sexual behavior to get a civil union and have no governmental benefits at all (including punishments) regarding marriage.  This reserves the religious ceremony of marriage as the union of a man and a woman before God and before witnesses back in the hands of the church and only the church.

    Point in history, the only real reason government was ever involved in the unions of man and woman was to foster a stable environment for the creation of future (biological) tax payers, laborers.  If this was unnecessary, I dare say that no ancient time lord or king or town bully would have given a rat’s arse and we would never have had governmental influence on marriages.  If we strip the role of government of fostering a stable environment to raise biological offspring, then government ceases to have any vested interest in the union at all and thus, should be completely removed from any such relationships (including managing divorces.)

    PS: Let us remember that the recipient of sexual intercourse always takes damage.  Vaginal/Anal tearing, emotional/mental damage (welcome or not.)


  • Since marriage is a religious institution, that obviously means that atheists shouldn’t be allowed to marry and get governmental benefits, right?

    Also, do you really think that men never suffer emotional damage when they have sex?


  • Also, heterosexual couples can also engage in “deviant sexual behavior.” Furthermore, many of them will never have sex at all. Should they be prevented from marrying?

  • '18 '17 '16 '11 Moderator

    @calvinhobbesliker:

    Since marriage is a religious institution, that obviously means that atheists shouldn’t be allowed to marry and get governmental benefits, right?

    Also, do you really think that men never suffer emotional damage when they have sex?

    In regards to the former:

    Atheists should not be allowed to MARRY.

    Atheists, Wiccans, Homosexuals, Heterosexuals, Christians, Jews, Muslims, Polytheists, whatever should all have equal opportunity to receive a government issued Union Certificate by the local magistrate.  Further, only this certificate should be valid for government benefits and only the dissolution of this certificate should be mediated by the government or their proxy.

    In regards to the latter:

    If the man is on the receiving side, yes.  If the man is on the pitching side, no.

    There is a psychological event that happens when someone physically enters your body that most men cannot grasp (because they have never experienced it.) It is to this event I refer.  The event can be horribly disfiguring as in the case of most rapes, or it can be an enormous blessing as you engage in sexual behavior with your significant other.  In either event, it is an event one just cannot understand unless one has had the sexual organs of another physically enter your body.


  • Sorry, I misunderstood. Your position is that anyone can get a civil union, which gives governmental benefits, while marriage has no legal meaning and does not confer any governmental benefits?

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