Thursday, April 30, 2009
House Votes to Criminalize Opinion
Through this blog entry linked at The Houston Chronicle, I learned that the House was considering HR 1913, a "hate crime" bill. The writer at The Black Shards Chronicle makes an argument against the very concept very much like one I made a few years ago in The Undercurrent. As I said then:
Punishing someone for his beliefs in addition to his actual crime is, in fact, exactly the opposite of what the government should be doing. For example, if someone gets ten years for a crime and has two more added on because he is "guilty" of a "hate crime," he's being jailed two years for his ideas by the government.As of this morning, the bill has passed. I am not sure whether WorldNetDaily is correct that a minister can now be prosecuted under this bill, "should their teachings be linked to any subsequent offense," but it certainly paves the way for it. (Proper laws -- against actual incitement -- are already on the books, just as they are for assault, rape, and murder.)
Also, as I noted then, the conservative movement is hardly opposing this latest assault on freedom:
A 2007 Hart Research poll shows large majorities of every major subgroup of the American electorate -- including such traditionally conservative groups as Republican men and evangelical Christians -- expressing support for strengthening hate crimes laws.The headline? "Log Cabin Republicans applauds passage of hate crimes prevention."
Playboy Interviews Ayn Rand
Jeff Scialabba of the Ayn Rand Institute reports that, "Playboy has posted its dynamite 1964 interview with Ayn Rand."
Last week, Rational Jenn hosted. This week, it
Drat! Gotta make that submission deadline next time!
Additional note to self: Watch this video. Leonard Nimoy and hobbits! How can I lose? My wife will probably like it, too.
Handouts against Handouts!
Paul Hsieh notes that printouts of the PDF version of "Health Care is Not a Right" would make excellent handouts to have on hand for the next round of Tea Party protests and tells you how to get the PDF.
Altruism vs. Beauty -- and Courtesy
Jennifer Snow writes a very thought-provoking post, taking the oft-alleged "objectification" of women as her point of departure:
But saying that a woman who clearly has put in quite a lot of effort is "ugly"? To me, this is frankly disturbing. The ramifications of a statement like that are incredible, particularly when it is made in front of another woman as a sort of compliment, which is how I hear this most often. Even if I ascribe the best of intent to the man making the statement--he is saying this particular woman is not his type--it implies an ugly comparative standard. He is saying to the other woman present that she should be pleased because he is elevating HER appearance above that of this other, idolized woman. I'm sorry, but no rational person wants to be valued only because they're BETTER THAN someone else. They want to be valued because they are good by an objective standard. [bold added]Read the whole thing.