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(continued from above)
The Constitution took what were previously considered privileges and declared them to be rights. As the most successful primate on the planet, we Homo sapiens surround ourselves with cultures assembled out of acquired technologies and processes that we are not born with. Just as we created shelters, clothing, agriculture, villages, cities, etc. from our surroundings, we created rules for interacting with each other. To say there is a difference between a privilege and a "natural right" in this context is purely a historical artifact. A newborn acquires the right to freedom of expression, to bear arms, to assemble with her/his peers, etc. due to very cultural processes that are learned and culture-specific. We agree not to kill each other because we agree to abide by some kind of social contract where we agree to forego such behavior in exchange for the many benefits of living, working and taking care of each other in a group setting. I happen to agree with you that these rights are a very good set of rights to abide by and think the social contract we live with here in the US has provided one of the most inclusive opportunities for a large number of people to receive the benefits accorded by the contract. But there always has been room for improvement and there always will be.
I completely agree with your set of reasonable regulations for possession of firearms and have tried to even promote it. I will continue to do so, am preparing letters for my senators and representative and will ask for support from any candidates who are running for those offices.
Posted 19 November 2017, 9:12 a.m.
Brock, to address your points:
In a state where you not only must register to be on the list of individuals living in a designated precinct, you must also present an approved identification card issued by the state at the voting site, I would say that this is a functional "license." Particularly since you must present additional documentation of your personhood that shows the correct parameters (above a certain age, living in a certain location and being a citizen of the United States) in order to be added to the registration list. This set of requirements rises to Merriam-Webster's definition of license: "a permission granted by competent authority to engage in a business or occupation or in an activity otherwise unlawful."
The current Secretary of State has not only set a higher bar than the federal government has set for legitimizing an individual's qualifications to vote. Furthermore, he has not spent the resources required to assist registrants in completing their incomplete applications, resulting in 10s of thousands of registrants being held "in suspense" for the past several election cycles. The fact that these individuals are disproportionately young, minorities and the elderly makes this voter suppression when combined with questionable voter machines and precinct locations/hours that result in long waits in heavily urban voting locations.
Now if you can prove that requiring a background check, ID, fingerprinting and paying for a gun license disproportionately affects law abiding citizens from acquiring a gun over those with psychological illnesses, domestic violence and other criminal activities, then we can have that conversation. I am not aware of any such discrepancy, although I am aware that such a well functioning system would indeed reduce the number of homicides due to suicide, domestic violence and perhaps even make some inroads against those with a criminal history from getting guns.
The fact that other states don't have such a steep cost for rallies at their state capitols makes me question our state's tactics, so I agree with you that the cost should be minimal/free. But the point here is that these actions are licensed activities even though they are a protected right.(continued below)
Posted 19 November 2017, 9:11 a.m.
You beat me to the punch Daniel. Last time I recalled you DO need to have a "license" to vote, which not only is required to exercise your right at the ballot box; you can also lose it if you are shown not to be over 17, not a citizen of the US, are a convicted felon (at least in most states) and can lose your vote and maybe even be fined if you do it in more than one place or even the wrong place.
Furthermore, your right to peaceful assembly at our state capitol just got more expensive, and you bet your booty you have to register to do that as well as have a political rally/protest permit in most cities.
We have the right to free speech, but access by journalists to political and other leaders typically requires pretty strict regulation where the news institution needs to register, and has a time and place for interviews specifically controlled.
While there is freedom of religion in our country, religious institutions must pass muster and register as a religious institution and follow the rules set up by the government in order to qualify for tax breaks and other religious privileges and can lose those privileges if they don't adhere to those guidelines. One of those rules includes not giving public funds to religious institutions which are used to promote or suppress those religious beliefs.
The leaders of our country, while creating rights out of a certain set of privileges, were not naive about the need to regulate those rights so that folks who wrapped themselves in those rights but took unwarranted actions that are not protected under those rights do not demean that right for others to exercise. The right to regulate arms comes from this same concern and deserves the same protections from inappropriate abuse of that right. The right to protect yourself against intruders and a hostile out of control government does not give you the right to kill an innocent stranger, your neighbor, ex spouse or yourself for that matter.
Posted 18 November 2017, 8:19 a.m.
Well, gee; I wish I knew how this writer really feels about the Trump Administration.
Posted 18 November 2017, 7:49 a.m.
I for one would like a full baseline of injections in the county that has already occurred in the county before we accept another new round of injections in our county. I believe that there may very well have been some contamination of some water tables by improperly injected brines from/adjacent to already existing oil wells in our county and we need to get a good handle on that situation if we have any chance of doing a good job of monitoring whether the new wells are contaminating existing water tables. Otherwise what is there to stop the companies from saying that the documented water contamination didn't come from previous wells?
Posted 17 November 2017, 7:37 a.m.
Are you saying that the $4500/month apartments are designed to better serve the Chicago and other rich suburban kids from around the country than the average Kansas student??? Shame on you for suggesting that! KU wouldn't use Kansas taxpayer money that way would they?
Posted 17 November 2017, 7:29 a.m.
Steny is the go-to person for national Democratic fundraising, mostly because he is seen as a moderate who can still get out the party and not offend the general public despite the protestations of the GOP operatives. With such loose cannons as the President who does a very poor job fundraising for the GOP, I'd say that Davis is being very sly bringing in Hoyer. I think if he's lucky, the GOP will respond by pulling in Trump who will be WAY more controversial than Steny ever could be. But I'm not holding my breath: the GOP field is way too crowded with "losers" for Trump to consider coming to Kansas yet.
Posted 17 November 2017, 7:14 a.m.
It's weird, Mark: google fish advisories and the most recent thing that pops up is your 2015 advisory. But if you put in "fish tissue advisory" the 2017 version ( which looks pretty much the same as the 2015) advisory pops up: http://www.kdheks.gov/news/web_archiv...
Posted 16 November 2017, 2:55 p.m.
But a universal background check requirement would quite possibly have saved hundreds if not thousands of other peoples' lives.
Posted 16 November 2017, 2:47 p.m.
Oh, so you think that your little reminder will turn the tide of inadequate resources being dedicated to enforcing existing laws. That way you can continue to complain about how existing laws aren't enforced and nobody will have to do anything differently. I get it.
Posted 16 November 2017, 9:57 a.m.
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