You know what? I was going to back away from this -- I know it can get heated, we've been down similar paths and it got a little ugly.
This time however, I see there's enough representation that plays tune with how I tend to see these things from Shaddow and justice: due to life changes and seeking challenge I'm actually going to try on the other pair of pants and go in with Hans on this one in earnest.
By definition, having a national identity means that your philosophies and concerns include more than just yourself; it's a political distinction and there's a line to be drawn - that line, by default, will be your nations border. It insinuates concern for others that you assume are like-minded (or at least in the same boat) and so therefore you need to protect yourself. There's no doubt that people and groups of people have a right to protect themselves, I don't think that is being debated at all.
Furthermore, by definition, "defense" is, simply: defending yourself. It has nothing whatsoever to do with who started what; victims of attack are victims. Period. Even if you start a fight you need to defend yourself. Though we all feel outrage for innocent bystanders that end up as victims of violence we can just as assuredly state that most violent conflicts are the result of two parties: regardless of the ratio of blame (something that is often difficult and sometimes impossible to properly weigh).
So why wouldn't you, given a directive/need to defend yourself (something we all have to do in one way or another) continue to adjust, examine and actively do something about it? The disagreement is about how, why and when you do this.
With that preamble, let's look at some of the stuff you are saying:
justice wrote:Just look at the new laws being passed to allow the US to detain anyone they want, indefinitely without trial. It's quite scary.
I'd argue that indefinite, trial-less incarceration is less "scary" than countless other alternatives: countless forms of unsupervised
mental and physical torture are worse than the same activity that is
monitored. Someone is going to jail: would you prefer to go to one in Saddam-era Iraq or Bush-era USA? I know which one is less preferred - would you agree with me?
justice wrote:there's no question that in the future someone with a desire to watch the world burn would gain power in the United States.
Why just the United States? History is littered with more dramatic examples in vastly different countries.
justice wrote:If the people in power were all good people, I completely welcome giving them all the power in the world to stop terrorism, crime and other terrible things to allow our lives to be worry-free. However, what we know about humanity is that is not how things happen.
Yet most people adhere to the law and respect the authorities that enforce them. To reject that would be anarchy. To accept it is to admit that there are flaws. Why should this only apply to policemen? It's the same logic that provides concepts like check-ups, re-certifications, investigations, peer review and tons more. Everyone knows not all people are good - we do the best we can but we admit there will be errors. You agree later on by saying:
justice wrote:It's really wrong to think that your own country could do no wrong, because it can, and over history, it has happened over and over again. We must always be aware of it, and learn from our past as humans. This is why it is so very important, to ensure that fair trials (innocent until proven guilty) stay in place for terrorists and criminals alike.
That's just one way of looking at it - after all, how many truly
guilty people were treated as innocent before judgement was passed?
Here's another way of looking at it: If you really
treated everyone as innocent, why can people be detained at all
? There's an admission and submission involved that facilitates a proper judicial process, but it always involves someone being detained without being PROVEN guilty in a court of law
, therefore all you're arguing is how long is acceptable
Shaddowmaster wrote:This is a seriouse threat people, and anyone who disagrees better pray the US military doesn't get bored and decide to catch up on all those neglected persecutions of different thinking individuals that they have the support of their citizens to perform, and that no one in the world could stop them from going through with!
I know this was tongue-in-cheek, but at what point DO you draw the line? With the above-referenced assertions that you can not really have a judicial process without someone
being taken from their home, inconvenienced, etc. (innocent or guilty) then you could just as simply state: "..better pray the police doesn't get bored and decide to catch up.." Bottom-line: someone is getting their door knocked down at 3:00am and dragged to jail. All you're talking about is how bored and at what time.
justice wrote:It's really wrong to think that your own country could do no wrong, because it can, and over history, it has happened over and over again.
I hadn't seen that assertion anywhere in this thread, really. The need for self-defense is almost always a result of some kind of mistake, misunderstanding or something gone wrong - so of course everyone agrees that people make mistakes.
Hans wrote:Going through a body scanner isn't losing freedom. Unless your talking about the freedomn to bring weapons on board an airplane.
Exactly, totally correct. Don't like body scanners? Don't fly.
Hans wrote:Just wait till even people like you can see the threat before we do anything.
..and that's exactly the source of the debate: where do you justify the sometimes necessary
preemptive nature of defense? Doesn't 'intelligence', even if it's wrong, require you to act in the face of possibly doing so incorrectly?
Hans wrote:Oh well arguing on the internet is like...
Not sure I totally agree there if the insinuation is that we're some kind of random Internet watering hole - though this forum IS on the Internet I think it being here in our neck of the woods amongst each other gives is more value and allows us to reach a higher level of discussion.
So here's what I bring to you: WHERE do you draw the line and WHY? How do you feel that "civil liberty" = "body-scanner-less airports"? How long should someone be detained on an unproven suspicion or should they be proven guilty in a court of law before seeing prison time?