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Cap'n Tightpants
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Dec 20, 2014, 07:51 PM
 
Some of us have been here longer than others, IMO if you've been here for a decade or more you're an old-timer, and we all have views that have stayed with us the entire time. Do you consider the position you hold on certain issues to be the bedrock on which your moral foundation is laid and it doesn't budge, or do you allow it to shift and change as you go? Maybe you're somewhere in the middle? What political or social views of yours have changed over the time you've been on MacNN? Did the discussions here, at least in some small way, play a part in that shift?

For instance, since I've been here my views on capital punishment, abortion, gay marriage, and gun control have all changed, in some ways dramatically. The first 3 have moved to the Left while the last has gone further to the Right. My stance on two of the issues, abortion and the death penalty, were at least in some small way affected by discussions I've had here.
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subego
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Dec 20, 2014, 09:29 PM
 
This may be semantic, but I don't feel the fundamentals have changed so much as I've been offered a more complete data set.

I did have blinding George Bush raeg with enough intensity to start ****ing up my other opinions. The forum was indispensable in helping me recalibrate that, and get me back on the same course I was going before 9/11.

Edit: this is half a post... I'll provide some "data set" examples.
     
subego
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Dec 20, 2014, 10:09 PM
 
I'm having trouble coming up with any.

The biggest "data point" influencer I can think of is my ex. She got her Master's in Women and Gender Studies while we were together, so it was impossible for it not to rub off on me.
     
SSharon
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Dec 20, 2014, 10:58 PM
 
I don't think many of my positions have shifted dramatically, but they have been reinforced through discussions here.

The only position that has measurably changed would be about gun ownership. I went from uncertainty or indifference to getting a gun license. I don't own a gun (yet?), but I support responsible gun ownership and don't like the common presumption that anyone wanting a gun is a criminal.
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Cap'n Tightpants  (op)
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Dec 20, 2014, 11:14 PM
 
My changes in perspective on the death penalty, abortion, and gay marriage were most influenced by my partners, but like I said before, conversations on this forum did influence me on the first two subjects, for sure. Particularly your statements:

Originally Posted by subego in 2008
I would be more comfortable with this if we developed a legal standard for "beyond a shadow of a doubt", that if someone was proven guilty under, then you can kill them. Otherwise, too much potential for mistakes.
Originally Posted by subego in 2013
^^I'm anti-death penalty, but it's due to the chance of screw-ups rather than not wanting to kill people.

However, I do support the creation of "beyond a shadow of doubt" as a test for evidence, and should a prosecutor decide to meet that bar, then we can kill you immediately. No appeals.
In part they made me realize that, if we are going to sentence someone to death we do need a tougher standard than reasonable doubt. I talked with a friend not long after who essentially said the exact same thing (it was right after a man in Texas was exonerated a year after he was executed) and it all clicked together, if we're going to be a nation that values justice we can't afford to be so cavalier with regards to human life.
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reader50
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Dec 21, 2014, 01:00 AM
 
I'm having trouble remembering all my "controversial" positions from 10-15 years ago. Also, we need a longer list of discussed issues. We've got:

Capital Punishment
Abortion
Gay Marriage
Gun Control

add ...

Universal Health Care
Israel vs Palestinian State
Surveillance vs Privacy
Immigration
Drug War vs Legalization
DMCA / DRM / Copyrights / Patents
     
Cap'n Tightpants  (op)
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Dec 21, 2014, 01:53 AM
 
Feel free, I just brought up a few hot-button topics, definitely not a comprehensive list.
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subego
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Dec 21, 2014, 03:54 AM
 
Originally Posted by Cap'n Tightpants View Post
My changes in perspective on the death penalty, abortion, and gay marriage were most influenced by my partners, but like I said before, conversations on this forum did influence me on the first two subjects, for sure. Particularly your statements:


In part they made me realize that, if we are going to sentence someone to death we do need a tougher standard than reasonable doubt. I talked with a friend not long after who essentially said the exact same thing (it was right after a man in Texas was exonerated a year after he was executed) and it all clicked together, if we're going to be a nation that values justice we can't afford to be so cavalier with regards to human life.
I'm humbled I made a useful contribution.

Edit: when I saw my name with the dates, I was like "oh shit... what horrible thing I said did he dig up?"
( Last edited by subego; Dec 21, 2014 at 05:21 AM. )
     
subego
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Dec 21, 2014, 05:17 AM
 
The example I keep thinking of isn't exactly right, but it's close enough.

I've had long debates with ebuddy about homosexuality. Going in, hearing a summary of his position, I would have considered it impossible for him to be anything other than a raving homophobe.

While I don't necessarily agree with his position, he showed me three valuable things.

1) My "raving homophobe" assumption was incorrect.
2) The topic is so politically charged people throw basic common sense out the window.
3) An excellent example of some common sense hurling in this regard was myself. See: false raving homophobe assumption from #1.
     
subego
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Dec 21, 2014, 05:33 AM
 
A smaller example goes to Doofy, for pointing out sexual abuse rates in the RCC are equivalent to those in the public school system, and they use similar methods of sweeping it under the rug. It was a shocking enough allegation I immediately went on the hunt for primary sources, which confirmed it.

While I was pretty anti-media at that point, I don't think I ever felt so betrayed by them. They should have provided me that context, not some ****ing foreigner.

Not that there's anything wrong with being foreign. I'm highlighting the degrees of separation from where it should have come from and where it did


For a long time I've bent over backwards not to be "that guy" when it comes to religion. I came away from this feeling I wasn't trying hard enough.
     
The Final Dakar
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Dec 22, 2014, 12:26 PM
 
I use this place to discover whether positions I hold stand-up. I not very good being able to decipher how I come to internal conclusions, but when I read arguments on both sides, I can feel which ones ring true internally or logically and which ones are paper thin and need to be reconsidered from a different angle.

I can't say I've changed positions per se, but reasoning on some has definitely evolved as more exposure to arguments let me formulate where I was coming from. I'm also able to empathize where people are coming from on some issues, even though I don't agree with them.
     
SSharon
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Dec 22, 2014, 09:48 PM
 
Originally Posted by The Final Dakar View Post
I'm also able to empathize where people are coming from on some issues, even though I don't agree with them.
Well put. I wish this sentiment applied to everyone on every forum.
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subego
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Dec 22, 2014, 10:16 PM
 
Originally Posted by SSharon View Post
Well put. I wish this sentiment applied to everyone on every forum.
To be fair, this is much harder than it sounds.

The basic concept here is: being right isn't always the point.

Separate from the unpleasant emotional state of being wrong, seeking objective truth is, like... a thing. Being (objectively) right isn't just part of that, it's all of it.

There's unresolvable tension between sympathy for an incorrect position and pursuit of objective truth.
     
The Final Dakar
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Dec 23, 2014, 12:01 PM
 
Originally Posted by SSharon View Post
Well put. I wish this sentiment applied to everyone on every forum.
Like I said, it highly dependent on the topic. I see where people are coming from on abortion. On gay marriage, not so much.
     
subego
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Dec 23, 2014, 12:09 PM
 
If I felt being a practicing homosexual was going to eternally damn your immortal soul, gay marriage puts me in a bit of a sticky wicket.

Honestly, I'm a bit surprised you don't find this obvious.
     
The Final Dakar
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Dec 23, 2014, 12:31 PM
 
Originally Posted by subego View Post
If I felt being a practicing homosexual was going to eternally damn your immortal soul, gay marriage puts me in a bit of a sticky wicket.

Honestly, I'm a bit surprised you don't find this obvious.
Gay marriage doesn't legalize practicing homosexuality. And we let a lot of other immoral acts that are legal and not campaigned against. I've said it only one two times before here, but if some Christians are willing to put up a list ranking sins by severity, I'd might take their concern here a little more seriously.

Of the top of my head:

Premarital sex
Living together out of wedlock
Sodomy
Oral copulation
Divorce
Adultery
Tattoos and piercing (self-mutilation)
Gambling
Greed
Pride
Gluttony (Obesity)
Gluttony (Alcoholism)
Smokin' dat herb
Sloth
Harder drug use
Not observing the sabbath
Being gay
Blasphemy
Athiesm

Rank 'em!
     
subego
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Dec 23, 2014, 01:19 PM
 
Maybe I'm missing a nuance here, but isn't there a significant difference between the above things not being grounds for criminal charges, and the above things being officially recognized by the government?

I feel excluded middle.
     
The Final Dakar
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Dec 23, 2014, 01:43 PM
 
Originally Posted by subego View Post
Maybe I'm missing a nuance here, but isn't there a significant difference between the above things not being grounds for criminal charges, and the above things being officially recognized by the government?

I feel excluded middle.
You need government paperwork for a few of those things. Or the person giving them to you does.
     
subego
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Dec 23, 2014, 02:01 PM
 
There's divorce, which you need a government document for because it's supersedes a previous government document.

What else are you thinking? Gambling? Selling pot? You'd have a hard time convincing me that has anything to do with morality as opposed to the government putting the squeeze on you for a cut.

Aren't we getting kinda far from your initial point?
     
The Final Dakar
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Dec 23, 2014, 02:02 PM
 
The term sanctioned comes to mind.
     
subego
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Dec 23, 2014, 02:03 PM
 
And... pretty sure pot smoking isn't a sin, as long as you don't do it to excess. Just like drinking.

Is gambling a sin? Honest question.
     
The Final Dakar
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Dec 23, 2014, 02:10 PM
 
Originally Posted by subego View Post
And... pretty sure pot smoking isn't a sin, as long as you don't do it to excess. Just like drinking.
That tends to depend on the branch. Our former attorney general didn't believe in dancing.

Originally Posted by subego View Post
Is gambling a sin? Honest question.
I believe so.
     
subego
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Dec 23, 2014, 02:10 PM
 
Quick Google says gambling isn't a sin either.

Which of these things is state sanctioned, and a sin?

BTW, I don't think divorce is a sin, either. Where the sin comes in is then behaving like you're unmarried after you do it.

Frex, my mom and dad are still married in the eyes of God, and are both adulterers, as they both got "married" to other people. They couldn't get a priest to sign off on their remarriages, not that either wanted them to. The divorce papers are just that: papers.
     
subego
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Dec 23, 2014, 02:13 PM
 
Originally Posted by The Final Dakar View Post
That tends to depend on the branch. Our former attorney general didn't believe in dancing.
I'm going to need the Pope or the Chongo to sign off on that one.

Some lawyer dude (somehow, I know he's a dude without looking) can say whatever the hell he wants.
     
The Final Dakar
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Dec 23, 2014, 02:16 PM
 
Originally Posted by subego View Post
Quick Google says gambling isn't a sin either.
Really? Looks more like a subject of interpretation and grey area.
https://www.google.com/search?client...UTF-8&oe=UTF-8

Originally Posted by subego View Post
BTW, I don't think divorce is a sin, either. Where the sin comes in is then behaving like you're unmarried after you do it.
i.e., being gay isn't a sin, but acting on it is. In other words, in 99% of the time its a sin.
     
The Final Dakar
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Dec 23, 2014, 02:17 PM
 
Originally Posted by subego View Post
I'm going to need the Pope or the Chongo to sign off on that one.
I'm not claiming it's a majority belief. But is gays burning in hell one, either?
     
The Final Dakar
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Dec 23, 2014, 02:18 PM
 
Apologies, Shaddim, this has gotten fabulously derailed. I should make another thread for this discussion.
     
subego
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Dec 23, 2014, 02:35 PM
 
Originally Posted by The Final Dakar View Post
Really? Looks more like a subject of interpretation and grey area.
https://www.google.com/search?client...UTF-8&oe=UTF-8

i.e., being gay isn't a sin, but acting on it is. In other words, in 99% of the time its a sin.
WRT gambling, the links I looked at (we did the same search) say either:

1) Nothing in the Bible specifically proscribes against it.

Or

2) Nothing in the Bible specifically proscribes against it, buuuuuut... and then starts in with fanwank.


WRT divorce, that the attitude is unrealistic isn't what's being debated. The issue (I gather) is whether the attitude is consistent, right?
     
subego
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Dec 23, 2014, 02:35 PM
 
Originally Posted by The Final Dakar View Post
Apologies, Shaddim, this has gotten fabulously derailed. I should make another thread for this discussion.
Likewise.
     
Cap'n Tightpants  (op)
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Dec 25, 2014, 11:35 AM
 
Originally Posted by The Final Dakar View Post
I use this place to discover whether positions I hold stand-up. I not very good being able to decipher how I come to internal conclusions, but when I read arguments on both sides, I can feel which ones ring true internally or logically and which ones are paper thin and need to be reconsidered from a different angle.

I can't say I've changed positions per se, but reasoning on some has definitely evolved as more exposure to arguments let me formulate where I was coming from. I'm also able to empathize where people are coming from on some issues, even though I don't agree with them.
I think this is pretty normal. Most people form their views internally, based on either a moral standard or experience with similar matters, and then look for peers to validate and/or confirm it.
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subego
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Dec 26, 2014, 10:13 PM
 
Most of my politics came from my (hippy) dad. I grew up in a pro-choice, pro-gay, pro-dank environment. I followed along in that regard.

We differ most widely on military and gun issues. This doesn't surprise me. In his late teens, people his age were being drafted into the meat grinder. In my late teens, Reagan was dismantling the Soviet Union with a volunteer army. Similarly, I had a steady diet of 80's action movies, video games, wargames, and D&D.
     
The Final Dakar
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Dec 31, 2014, 01:19 PM
 
Originally Posted by Cap'n Tightpants View Post
I think this is pretty normal. Most people form their views internally, based on either a moral standard or experience with similar matters, and then look for peers to validate and/or confirm it.
This feels like you're undermining my point.
     
subego
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Dec 31, 2014, 10:50 PM
 
I read it as saying the same thing as you.
     
The Final Dakar
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Jan 5, 2015, 01:36 PM
 
Originally Posted by subego View Post
I read it as saying the same thing as you.
Then I spoke poorly or I'm misreading his comment.
     
Cap'n Tightpants  (op)
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Jan 5, 2015, 01:44 PM
 
Well, I said it was normal not "typical", there's definitely nothing abnormal or irregular about it.
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finboy
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Jan 9, 2015, 04:21 PM
 
I've learned a lot over the years by reading everyone's opinion. I'm sure it's influenced my opinion too. As GI Joe says:

Knowing is half the battle.
     
   
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