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Don't frighten the horses: What Larry Craig tells conservatives about ourselves.
vanity | September 1, 2007 | Nathanbedford

Posted on 08/31/2007 3:32:33 PM PDT by nathanbedford

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To: nathanbedford
Agreed. However, Americans are not comfortable with the idea of the government invading one's bedroom even to criminalize suspect sexual conduct. We believe consenting adults should decide that for themselves and if the act in question is a sinful one, they should be accountable before God. As I've said before, the government can and should uphold public morality as opposed to private behavior behind the closed doors of the home.

"Show me just what Mohammed brought that was new, and there you will find things only evil and inhuman, such as his command to spread by the sword the faith he preached." - Manuel II Palelologus

51 posted on 08/31/2007 4:41:37 PM PDT by goldstategop (In Memory Of A Dearly Beloved Friend Who Lives In My Heart Forever)
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To: Billthedrill
Thank you for articulating is so well, in fact better than I did, my observations about Craig's hypocrisy, especially as a lawmaker.


52 posted on 08/31/2007 4:42:54 PM PDT by nathanbedford ("I like to legislate. I feel I've done a lot of good." Sen. Robert Byrd)
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To: nathanbedford

They mean kwazy-public and kwazy-private don’t they?


53 posted on 08/31/2007 4:45:35 PM PDT by Khepera (Do not remove by penalty of law!)
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To: Jeff Head
Jeff Head wrote:

The Supreme Court did not, and cannot wreck right and wrong. They just condoned and underwrote a wrong...that does not make it right.


"-- This is an example of the trouble the law gets into what it attempts to criminalize a tool or means of a crime instead of, or, at least as well as, the criminal behavior itself.
So we attempt to make guns illegal to prevent gun violence instead of concentrating on prosecuting the violence itself.
We criminalize public Intoxication and possession of illegal drugs rather than prosecuting the antisocial behavior which they might produce.
We go one step further with drugs when we criminalize the possesion of paraphernalia because the possession of the stuff might lead to the use of drugs which in turn, might lead to antisocial or criminal behavior.
I suppose we must ultimately stop this chain of causation when we get to Original Sin. -- "

Jeff, the Supreme Court did not "condone" the sin of sodomy. -- They said that a State cannot criminalize that practice, -- any more than State/local gov'ts can criminalize our right to own & carry arms.

54 posted on 08/31/2007 4:49:02 PM PDT by tpaine (" My most important function on the Supreme Court is to tell the majority to take a walk." -Scalia)
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To: nathanbedford

“As a conservative you had a problem last November and you are very likely to have an even bigger problem November 2008.”

That may be, but as a conservative, the problem is the newer laws and policies not the Constitution, which does not allow for depravity. The more we dumb down what is acceptable in society, the less we get from people as far as decency.


55 posted on 08/31/2007 4:49:18 PM PDT by gidget7 ( Vote for the Arsenal of Democracy, because America RUNS on Duncan!)
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To: kinoxi
Come on I made clear in the vanity that I regard Craig as "pathetic." I am not carrying water for Craig I am trying to get our heads clear about where we should stand as conservatives, what we want the law to do, and what political and policy stance should we take.

I find sodomy to be as disgusting as the next man but indulging our righteousness has cost conservatives dearly. There will be more Craigs if we don't get clear about this.


56 posted on 08/31/2007 4:50:23 PM PDT by nathanbedford ("I like to legislate. I feel I've done a lot of good." Sen. Robert Byrd)
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To: goldstategop

Bingo


57 posted on 08/31/2007 4:52:55 PM PDT by gidget7 ( Vote for the Arsenal of Democracy, because America RUNS on Duncan!)
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To: gidget7
You will note that I while do not condone depravity, I'm resigned to the need to draw a clear line between the public and private. We may not be able to do much about two men having sex in their own bedroom but we do have it within our power to prevent them them from soliciting or having sex in a public setting. We may not be able to enforce traditional mores in our society in private through the police power but we can uphold public decorum through the same police power to the fullest extent allowed by the law.

"Show me just what Mohammed brought that was new, and there you will find things only evil and inhuman, such as his command to spread by the sword the faith he preached." - Manuel II Palelologus

58 posted on 08/31/2007 4:53:32 PM PDT by goldstategop (In Memory Of A Dearly Beloved Friend Who Lives In My Heart Forever)
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To: Old_Mil

And ditto to you too!


59 posted on 08/31/2007 4:54:04 PM PDT by gidget7 ( Vote for the Arsenal of Democracy, because America RUNS on Duncan!)
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To: nathanbedford
Civil unions, on the other hand, should be easy for a conservative to tolerate because he believes in the freedom of contract.

Thanks for a great, thoughtful essay (we should expect no less from you).

Here's the problem with "civil unions". So-called "civil unions", shorn of their stamp of approval on homosexuality, don't add anything new to existing contract law.

Anyone can appoint a power of attorney for healthcare, anyone can will their estate to anyone they wish, anyone can execute a reciprocal personal services contract with another to assume certain obligations.

The purpose of a "civil union", therefore, is to bundle these various, already legal contractual pieces, into an instrument for the state to ostentatiously approve of that which most citizens do not approve of.

60 posted on 08/31/2007 4:54:56 PM PDT by Jim Noble (Trails of troubles, roads of battle, paths of victory we shall walk.)
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To: nathanbedford
I've been perfectly clear on that. Conservatives can still disapprove of homosexuality. The fact consensual behavior is allowed in private by no means should be read as permission to extend that to other areas of society. We should and still can institute and enforce appropriate rules for expectations of public conduct.

"Show me just what Mohammed brought that was new, and there you will find things only evil and inhuman, such as his command to spread by the sword the faith he preached." - Manuel II Palelologus

61 posted on 08/31/2007 4:56:36 PM PDT by goldstategop (In Memory Of A Dearly Beloved Friend Who Lives In My Heart Forever)
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To: nathanbedford

I cannot argue with post #56.


62 posted on 08/31/2007 4:57:34 PM PDT by kinoxi
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To: goldstategop

I agree, for the most part!


63 posted on 08/31/2007 5:00:06 PM PDT by gidget7 ( Vote for the Arsenal of Democracy, because America RUNS on Duncan!)
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To: Manic_Episode
Sex in public is wrong and illegal across the board period.

Yep, -- when you get caught disturbing the peace, 'scaring the horses', - you should pay the price.
30 days; - next case..

64 posted on 08/31/2007 5:00:35 PM PDT by tpaine (" My most important function on the Supreme Court is to tell the majority to take a walk." -Scalia)
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To: Billthedrill
There are serious public health issues involved here that in my estimation do fall within the Constitutional purview of the state.

Those public health issues (which are real) are IDENTICAL in the privacy of one's own home.

The real issue is that what Senator Craig was doing was disgusting and perverted. I'm not sure the law offers a solution in our time.

I'm certain the public health law doesn't.

65 posted on 08/31/2007 5:00:57 PM PDT by Jim Noble (Trails of troubles, roads of battle, paths of victory we shall walk.)
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To: gidget7
That may be, but as a conservative, the problem is the newer laws and policies not the Constitution, which does not allow for depravity. The more we dumb down what is acceptable in society, the less we get from people as far as decency.

Actually, the Constitution does allow depravity if the state or the federal government chooses not to prohibit it. The Supreme Court in the Texas sodomy case when a step further and said that the Constitution prohibits a state from criminalizing depravity-sodomy in private between consulting adults-on privacy grounds.

The question for conservatives I think is what do we do now that the law is not available to enforce "decency" which you say will result in the dumbing down of society?I tried to articulate in my vanity some of the areas which I described as having" higher value"which should still be permitted by the courts to be enforced and which also, fortuitously, politically advantageous.


66 posted on 08/31/2007 5:00:59 PM PDT by nathanbedford ("I like to legislate. I feel I've done a lot of good." Sen. Robert Byrd)
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To: nathanbedford
If there are more Craigs, then they too should step down, before they disgrace themselves and the country. THAT is how I truly feel. I will not cow tow to this agenda. To do so would be at the detriment of my own soul. And as I have stated, that is neither helpful nor is it loving, it is enabling.
67 posted on 08/31/2007 5:03:54 PM PDT by gidget7 ( Vote for the Arsenal of Democracy, because America RUNS on Duncan!)
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To: kinoxi
Whew!


68 posted on 08/31/2007 5:05:11 PM PDT by nathanbedford ("I like to legislate. I feel I've done a lot of good." Sen. Robert Byrd)
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To: nathanbedford
Just what did he do that was so disorderly?

Even if we ignore the implications of his actions, the acts themselves would make any man who had the misfortune of being in the next stall extremely uncomfortable. If I see anyones body parts on my side of the divider, I'm going to tell him to remove them.

I was giving the Senator the benefit of the doubt before, but now it's clear to me he was up to no good.

69 posted on 08/31/2007 5:06:08 PM PDT by Kleon
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To: Jim Noble
re: Anyone can appoint a power of attorney for healthcare, anyone can will their estate to anyone they wish, anyone can execute a reciprocal personal services contract with another to assume certain obligations. The purpose of a "civil union", therefore, is to bundle these various, already legal contractual pieces, into an instrument for the state to ostentatiously approve of that which most citizens do not approve of.)))

Very concise. I wish, when any conserv pol is confronted with "do you approve of civil unions?" would have the straighforward rejoinder "I don't approve of them, but they already exist in every state of the union. Every couple, triplet or quartet--etc, already has the right to go to an attorney and work out household contracts to suit themselves."

70 posted on 08/31/2007 5:06:27 PM PDT by Mamzelle
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To: nathanbedford
So long as we as conservatives attack homosexuals for their status as homosexuals rather than for their overt acts which are repugnant to a higher value, we are open to the hypocrisy charge.

But do we attack homosexuals for their status? Most conservatives I know—myself included—are content to live and let live. But we have been forced by circumstances to oppose homosexuality as a social and political movement.

Years ago, homosexual activists asked only that we respect their privacy: What we do in the privacy of our bedrooms, they said, is our business, and nobody else's. That made sense to me at the time.

But somewhere along the line the argument changed. It is no longer enough to tolerate homosexuals: now we must approve, even "celebrate" their lifestyle, and treat homosexual liaisons as equivalent to marriage. Some have even gone so far as to demand affirmative action for homosexuals, to compensate for alleged past discrimination.

When activists try to tell my children that homosexuality is just another lifestyle, every bit as healthy as normal sexual relations within traditional marriage, they have crossed over the line. I for one have begun to doubt the wisdom of my previous tolerance of homosexuals.

71 posted on 08/31/2007 5:09:52 PM PDT by Logophile
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To: nathanbedford
The key word is “privacy”. And the problem with this particular agenda referring to that word, is their definition of it. Ever broadening, and ever changing. Not many have a problem with what goes on in a bedroom, between two consenting adults. But that is not what this agenda limits itself to. They are broadening privacy to mean all areas of life, not just the bedroom.

I agree the cops didn’t go far enough, thus haven’t a lot to go on in a court case, but it is their policy that should be changed, not our views on the subject. I applaud their attempting to stop this behavior. And they have done extensive investigations to find out the places, as well as what these codes consist of. I have a problem with the fact that these codes exist, and that they are so well known, and practiced.

72 posted on 08/31/2007 5:10:59 PM PDT by gidget7 ( Vote for the Arsenal of Democracy, because America RUNS on Duncan!)
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To: Jim Noble
Those public health issues (which are real) are IDENTICAL in the privacy of one's own home.

No, with respect, they're not. Without getting more graphic than this thread deserves they're quite a bit worse if those acts take place in public.

The real issue is that what Senator Craig was doing was disgusting and perverted.

Really? What did he actually do? That's the problem here - he may have been (and almost certainly was) soliciting an anonymous homosexual tryst, but all he actually did was to make some signals that he was willing. As I stated, it is easy to legislate against the act, but expression of willingness to take part in it is not, I suggest, within the state's rights to prohibit lest the state decide to prohibit other speech as well. There are exceptions - sedition comes to mind - but when did we last see a prosecution, much less a conviction, for even that?

Being "disgusting and perverted" is not, in my opinion, a valid ground for law. It is certainly valid ground for expressing disapproval and shunning the individual, which is what I am fairly certain would happen in the next election should Craig be foolish enough to run.

73 posted on 08/31/2007 5:11:42 PM PDT by Billthedrill
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To: nathanbedford
Are we to conclude that it is proper to make criminal a solicitation of homosexual sex but not the solicitation of homosexual sex?

It's your call, Nathan.

74 posted on 08/31/2007 5:12:52 PM PDT by Rudder
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To: Logophile

“But do we attack homosexuals for their status? Most conservatives I know—myself included—are content to live and let live. But we have been forced by circumstances to oppose homosexuality as a social and political movement.”

Bump for clarity! Excellent points


75 posted on 08/31/2007 5:13:10 PM PDT by gidget7 ( Vote for the Arsenal of Democracy, because America RUNS on Duncan!)
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To: gidget7
The key word is “privacy”. And the problem with this particular agenda referring to that word, is their definition of it. Ever broadening, and ever changing. Not many have a problem with what goes on in a bedroom, between two consenting adults. But that is not what this agenda limits itself to. They are broadening privacy to mean all areas of life, not just the bedroom.

It appears that you and I are singing from the same page. See Post #71.

76 posted on 08/31/2007 5:15:05 PM PDT by Logophile
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To: Logophile

Yes indeed :)


77 posted on 08/31/2007 5:15:53 PM PDT by gidget7 ( Vote for the Arsenal of Democracy, because America RUNS on Duncan!)
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To: Jim Noble; Billthedrill
Thanks for the kind words Jim.

I agree with your observations about civil unions with this caveat: the bundle of rights, which you say the homosexual couple already has, is something they can accomplish therefore seriatim. Query: Should the law prohibit the bundling because to do so would be to somehow endorse sodomy which is repugnant to the majority of the people or should the state allow what is otherwise legal because to prohibit it amounts to little more than an act of petulance done because we are disgusted by the sex act?

Your comments to Bill the drill about the application of public health laws is interesting. It seems that we as a society tie ourselves into all kinds of knots when we address this issue.


78 posted on 08/31/2007 5:16:18 PM PDT by nathanbedford ("I like to legislate. I feel I've done a lot of good." Sen. Robert Byrd)
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To: nathanbedford
Oh, my yes. I don't think many on this thread would believe the extent to which the government has already been empowered in the pursuit of public health, and even tested and approved through the Supremen Court. Confinement without a trial in the form of quarantine, for example. It's absolutely legal, and has been since the Yellow Fever days. It is difficult to believe how far public health issues trump what we might normally consider as unquestionable civil rights.

This is an entirely peripheral issue and I apologize for that, but gay activists who complain that Reagan, et al "didn't do anything" about the AIDS epidemic should be very careful what they wish for.

79 posted on 08/31/2007 5:22:03 PM PDT by Billthedrill
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To: Rudder
Bill the drill seems to have commented clearly on this issue in the post preceding yours.


80 posted on 08/31/2007 5:23:36 PM PDT by nathanbedford ("I like to legislate. I feel I've done a lot of good." Sen. Robert Byrd)
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To: nathanbedford
Brilliant and well written post! Thank you. Russell Kirk once wrote that "conservative" was best used as an adjective than as a noun. Thinking of "conservative" this way solves many problems.
81 posted on 08/31/2007 5:25:29 PM PDT by shrinkermd
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To: nathanbedford

Frankly; (and I say this with respect); you are a compromiser my friend.

I (as a principled conservative)/Christian/Traditionalist/Victorian Era Male (not born then, but..!) still stand against homosexuality as abhorant. I do believe it should be criminilized and don’t care what the elites or the “law”-as if the Supreme Court ever really legally has the standing of Legislative “law” says. This must be opposed on all levels (not that we have any ill will toward homosexuals themselves, but we should not stop opposing it legally). To do so would be to go down the ‘slippery-slope’, and I do not conceede that homosexual perverts will eventually win this war against our society~! To compromise at all, especially where the law concerns, we abandon all premise of a “higher-law” that our laws in the US have traditionally been based upon (and also which we oppose abortion- as you so elequently make this point..). To abandon a higher law, gives the un-repentent homosexual the imputus to impose their will completely upon society. Forget Parental rights-which because of the truely aborhant nature of homosexuality conflicts with the real homosexual agenda.

I don’t have any ill will toward homosexuals personally (but I do for their sexual sin, and they are sinners in need of Jesus just as others that are trapped in sin are). To abandon our opposition of homosexuality (while we should not as Christians oppose them) would be to give up on them; to say ‘it’s ok’..’it’s all-right’ you’re gay, and really gives up hope for them.

I do insist that homosexuality is of the devil, and one of the most distructive infectious diseases of the soul/mind that our society has ever seen (but I believe through Christ-even the most ardent can be forgiven, repent, and change; there is HOPE).

I equate it to alcoholism: we don’t tell the alcoholic their adiction is ok becuase there are REAL harmful (as well as spiritually harmful-sinful) effects from this..should we do the same to the sexual addict?

As for the Craig case: He pleads innocent (and that the cop was mistaken/mishonest- I agree we republicans throw our own under the bus too quickly, I am not prepared to ‘throw him under the bus’ or to say he’s guilty untill the real facts come out that show it’s true. He shouldn’t resign unless actually shown to have really committed this act, otherwise Republicans are only doing this to presumptively ‘save their own hide’. I don’t think the public is going to buy it; and I could care less about party leadership-(they’re pretty much worthless, see as what they’ve done over this last year..).

Instead of worrying about what the democrats call us “hypocrites” there has got to be a better-more Biblical way to stand against this, I shall be praying for God’s guidence to find it..!


82 posted on 08/31/2007 5:26:40 PM PDT by JSDude1
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To: nathanbedford
The right to privacy does exist as a matter of common law, and as a legal principle. For example, the Fourth Amendment guarantees the "right of the people to be secure in their persons, houses, ..." The Third Amendment exists because of a right to private enjoyment of one's property. The Fifth Amendment respects the privacy of individuals accused of a crime. And so on.

That the Court has erroneously expanded the common law principle to protect abortion does not diminish that principle, nor its applicability in this case. There is little if any compelling interest on the part of the state to regulate sexual behavior between consenting adults in the privacy of their own quarters. There is a HUGE implication to ruling otherwise, namely that no citizen can act, even if no harm arises and he is within the precincts of his own home, in a manner the state disapproves.

I don't need or want the state approving or disapproving of my private sexual behavior. It is none of the state's business. The Court wisely found this to be true.

83 posted on 08/31/2007 5:28:00 PM PDT by IronJack (=)
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To: nathanbedford

Re; Your post 80 and my post 74: you’re not reading or writing carefully.


84 posted on 08/31/2007 5:30:25 PM PDT by Rudder
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To: Logophile
I think we are in agreement. I posted this in the vanity:

The flagrant, obnoxious, in your face primping and even soliciting, should be outlawed because it is repugnant to a higher value, which is the welfare of our children. Likewise proselytizing of our children in the school system. Homosexual marriage can be opposed because it degrades a higher institution, heterosexual marriage. Civil unions, on the other hand, should be easy for a conservative to tolerate because he believes in the freedom of contract.

And this:

Conversely, we must not be intimidated by political correctness from insisting that the law protect our children from physical, psychological and educational abuse. We must be careful to punish acts where appropriate, but not the status. Neither should we tolerate that the status be exalted. We should act only when the horses are frightened.


85 posted on 08/31/2007 5:31:11 PM PDT by nathanbedford ("I like to legislate. I feel I've done a lot of good." Sen. Robert Byrd)
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To: shrinkermd
Thank you.


86 posted on 08/31/2007 5:32:34 PM PDT by nathanbedford ("I like to legislate. I feel I've done a lot of good." Sen. Robert Byrd)
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To: Mamzelle

South Carolina would not aprove of a gay Senator (despite someone’s supicion), I am not willing to conceede that someone struggles with particular sin unless otherwise proven definitively true..


87 posted on 08/31/2007 5:33:39 PM PDT by JSDude1
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To: Rudder
Rudder, no, I did indeed mean to refer you to Bill the drill's post number 73. As you will read there and in my original vanity you will see a great deal of ambivalence about the wisdom of making solicitation illegal rather than concentrating on prosecuting public sodomy itself.

Apart from free speech issues, it leads us down the path that is at best treacherous. You might consider the problems that occur in the workplace where we do "punish" solicitation of heterosexual sex.


88 posted on 08/31/2007 5:42:45 PM PDT by nathanbedford ("I like to legislate. I feel I've done a lot of good." Sen. Robert Byrd)
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To: nathanbedford
Let us clear out all this underbrush so that we should ourselves not be accused of hypocrisy. Let us resist homosexual expansionism in defense of higher values but let us not confuse homosexuals with the devil. Let us come clear in our thinking about how we want the law to work and how we want our politicians to behave. Let us reject utterly those who demagogue this issue.

i would not quibble with that but a twink trolling Senator in a public bathroom ain't worth the ordnance to defend Bedford

89 posted on 08/31/2007 5:46:07 PM PDT by wardaddy (the future of the West is bleak)
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To: IronJack
I find your history of the privacy issue to be substantially accurate. My problem with your position that the right of privacy can be applied to protect sodomy arises out of my fear that yours is a purely subjective application of the principle. Why should there be a greater right to have privacy in one's home than in one's body? And if you cannot tell me why, then I think you have to reverse your position on abortion.


90 posted on 08/31/2007 5:48:15 PM PDT by nathanbedford ("I like to legislate. I feel I've done a lot of good." Sen. Robert Byrd)
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To: nathanbedford
I think that we are in agreement.

I see that we are.

Shall we charge them both ways?

91 posted on 08/31/2007 5:49:02 PM PDT by Logophile
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To: nathanbedford; doug from upland

Now 5 days of Craig stories is “So” over!!!!.....Lets get back to the Hillary fund Scandal!!!!!!!...........


92 posted on 08/31/2007 5:52:52 PM PDT by GitmoSailor (AZ Cold War Vet===Fairness Doctrine for TV First!!!!!.....I'Am With Fred)
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To: wardaddy
It ain't the fudgePacker I am worried about, it's us.


93 posted on 08/31/2007 5:54:52 PM PDT by nathanbedford ("I like to legislate. I feel I've done a lot of good." Sen. Robert Byrd)
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To: nathanbedford
You ask:

--- should the law acknowledge that the sight of coupled homosexuals is far more disconcerting than the image of coupled heterosexuals?

No, our legal system should not make that type of distinction. -- It would violate 'equal protection', imo.

If the law admits that much, is it not saying that homosexuality is somehow depraved? How can that be squared with the Supreme Court's ruling that the homosexual sex act itself, if private and done between consenting adults, is constitutionally protected?

You've answered your own question. It's not our legal systems function to say that homosexuality "is somehow depraved".

We criminilize the solicitation of one kind of sex which is legal if private, and do not criminalize solicitation of another kind which is also legal if private (and not commercialized). Why? We criminalize both kinds if conducted in public. Why is one solicitation more obnoxious than the other?

'Legally speaking' they aren't; -- and can't be, - under equal protection..

This is an example of the trouble the law gets into what it attempts to criminalize a tool or means of a crime instead of, or, at least as well as, the criminal behavior itself. So we attempt to make guns illegal to prevent gun violence instead of concentrating on prosecuting the violence itself.

Well put. -- By saying that States have a 'right' to criminalize private non-harmful sexual behaviors, -- we in effect are saying that States have a 'right' to criminalize private non harmful behaviors regarding the carrying of arms, for instance.

94 posted on 08/31/2007 6:09:46 PM PDT by tpaine (" My most important function on the Supreme Court is to tell the majority to take a walk." -Scalia)
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To: RC2

Um, what?


95 posted on 08/31/2007 6:11:54 PM PDT by RedWhitetAndBlue
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To: nathanbedford

Seems to me these local laws are to “Keep The Peace” in
cases such as this,,,

Keep the Chamber Of Commerce happy,,,
(looks bad on the news)

Keep’s the fags from getting shot/stabbed/ass-kicked or
stuffed down the city sewer,,,

MAN LAW : NO TOUCHIN’ IN THE BATHROOM !!!...;0)


96 posted on 08/31/2007 6:18:04 PM PDT by 1COUNTER-MORTER-68 (THROWING ANOTHER BULLET-RIDDLED TV IN THE PILE OUT BACK~~~~~)
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To: Billthedrill
Without getting more graphic than this thread deserves they're quite a bit worse if those acts take place in public.

Bill, you don't need to worry about my sensibilities. I'm board-certified in Infectious Diseases and have dabbled (and on occasion more than dabbled) in Public Health for thirty years.

Your opinion is common, but not, I think, correct.

Sex with strangers, sodomy, multiple partners, exposure to excrement, serial viral and bacterial infections are every bit as bad in the privacy of one's bedroom as they are in the toilets at MSP. The risk to third parties from letting it all hang out is vastly overstated, especially now that the Mexicans and Haitians who clean up after these guys use bleach and wear gloves.

The "public health" case for re-instituting antihomosexual laws and codes is strong enough, but it's equally strong at home as it is in the airport - and it isn't going to happen in either place.

97 posted on 08/31/2007 6:27:00 PM PDT by Jim Noble (Trails of troubles, roads of battle, paths of victory we shall walk.)
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To: tpaine
If I may inflict this on you here is a rather long post which has some relevance to this idea of prohibiting one behavior to get at another:

I found your tutorial on American civics to be edifying, however, I do not argue that to prohibit the use of drugs is unconstitutional, merely that the prohibition is unwise. I concede that laws restricting the use or of drugs are, absent other constitutional flaws, not per se unconstitutional. The American experiment prohibiting alcohol, however, was constitutional-we know that because we had an amendment to that effect -but it certainly was not wise. I think we are skating dangerously close to disrupting our republican constitutional government which you have described when we are dictated to by a Supreme Court which can rule on the one hand that a state may constitutionally pass all sorts of laws restricting our access to guns, but can rule on the other hand that a state may not pass laws prohibiting buggery. If living in our constitutional republic means that we are all entitled to carry on merrily buggering one another in the privacy of our homes (a pastime which I am told encourages the spread of AIDS and thus generates many antisocial results), why cannot we merrily consume illicit drugs in our homes? Here we probably both agree that this is a decision which is best made in our legislatures, and not in our courts.

But we have not so far argued constitutionality here, we have talked about the problem from a public policy point of view. In this public-policy context, you seem to state the graveman of your arguments here:

"Disruptive behaviors which are damaging to the ongoing function of society (such as drug use) were singled out long ago, based on hard learned lessons and that's why many laws were made for the good of society as a whole to restrict such indulgences which erode the freedom of society in general. Individual freedom to take drugs, turn into a thief and murderer due to the effects of thse drugs on the human mind do not over ride the freedom of society to walk without fear on the street."

Here I suggest you are conflating "disruptive behaviors", ie the frequently observed results of drug taking (or alcohol consumption for that matter) such as street muggings, with the drug taking itself which is, of course, not "disruptive" since the addict usually mellows out and sleeps - although psychotic episodes do occur. As a society we have learned to legally disassociate the drinking from drunken behavior and generally criminalize only the latter. When the potential for harm becomes too great, as in drunken driving, we cease to distinguish between the drinking and the crime. In fact we criminalize the drinking even where the defendant has capably driven, saying that we conclusively presume the inebriate to be driving drunk when his blood-alcohol exceeds a certain level even though he may actually have been otherwise driving legally.You would extend this principle across the board when it comes to drugs usage, presumably because you believe the instrumentality itself is so dangerous because drugs will convert a user into a "thief and murderer due tho the effects of these drugs on the human mind..." and criminalize the use without taking account whether it has acturally produced "disruptive behaviors."

Such is an inversion of our liberties and should not be resorted to by the state absent compelling proof of the potential evil with a probability so high that the state must eradicate this behavior. Futhermore, there should be near certainity that the loss of liberties will produce the conduct desired. Finally, the cure must not be worse than the disease, that is, the state must not engage in wholesale deprivation of human rights and become itself corrupt in the process. Remember, we went down this route in prohibition and the experiment failed all of these tests. This is exactly the road that the gun grabbers want us to go down today, they claim that the instrumentality is so dangerous and the carnage in our homes and streets is so insupportable that we must outlaw the guns themselves rather than punish their improper use. That is what you have just claimed about drugs. I acknowledge that drugs do not enjoy explicit constitutional protection as do guns, I even acknowledge that the state may act constitutionally in banning drugs, but is it wise to do so?

Those of us on my side of this argument believe that a drug user is converted into a "thief and murderer" not due to the effects of these drugs on the human mind-although I concede that they tend to erace conscience-but rather due to the craving which cannot be satisfied at reasonable expense. The state in its efforts to eradicate the drugs has only made them more expensive thus tempting the addict to engage in thievery and even murder to obtain his next dose. I say, let them have the drugs at minimal cost so that the addict can satisfy his habit without resort to crime. He might kill himself, but he leaves me and my family alone and we will be able, in your words, "to walk without fear on the street."


98 posted on 08/31/2007 6:31:25 PM PDT by nathanbedford ("I like to legislate. I feel I've done a lot of good." Sen. Robert Byrd)
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To: 1COUNTER-MORTER-68

Nice synopsis (lol)


99 posted on 08/31/2007 6:37:40 PM PDT by jedward (I'm not sure you meant, what I understand...or maybe you did.)
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To: nathanbedford
Why should there be a greater right to have privacy in one's home than in one's body? And if you cannot tell me why, then I think you have to reverse your position on abortion.

There are several subtleties you're missing in oversimplifying the argument that way. For one, "sodomy" doesn't harm anyone. One key component in rejecting the state's oversight of sexual behavior is that no one be injured by the activity. And that doesn't mean "injured" in some vague, idealistic way. It means in a demonstrable, empirical fashion. Abortion is not harmless; a person DIES whenever one is performed.

Secondly, the right to privacy has NEVER been absolute. No one has ever defended the right to murder or rape on private property based on a privacy precedent. Where the state can demonstrate a compelling interest in regulating behavior, it can justify its intrusion into the private precincts of its citizens. Butting into a person's bedroom is the ultimate intrusion, yet the state has little or no justifiable interest in doing so other than the imposition of an arbitrary morality on the subjects.

100 posted on 08/31/2007 6:43:31 PM PDT by IronJack (=)
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