Minority rights?

What does that mean? After listening to another one of Barack Obama’s recitals yesterday, i.e., …

(W.A.M.) re·cit·al, 1. The act of reading or reciting in a public performance. 2. A very detailed account or report of something; a narration.

…I spent two hours combing through websites on the Internet looking for a law, i.e. legislation specifically pertaining to minority rights in America and I came up with zilch.

According to the website, “democraticunderground.com” The United States of America is not just a democracy – it is a constitutional democracy. What that means is according to “democratic underground.com” that our government is designed to express not only the will of the majority (democracy), but also to simultaneously protect the unalienable rights of minorities and the powerless. That is an extremely important point because it is the constitutional protections of minorities and the powerless that add civility, humanity, and decency to what could otherwise be a barbaric nation – democratic or not. In other words, democracy alone does not ensure that a nation will act humanely and decently. A majority can at times be quite cruel and unfair. Lynch mobs will generally express the will of the majority (of the mob that is). The majority of whole nations can at times approve of and do terrible things. Even genocides can at times express the will of a majority. And that is precisely why our Founding Fathers recognized the need for a Constitution that would protect the rights of minorities and the powerless. Thus it is that our Constitution provides the foundation for our nation; that it has for more than two centuries provided our nation with international respect and credibility; and that the abandonment of our Constitution under the “leadership” of George Bush and Dick Cheney has largely eliminated the international esteem in which our nation was previously held, reversed more than two centuries of progress, and now threatens to throw our nation and our world back into the Dark Ages. So let’s consider how our Constitution protects the unalienable rights of minorities in our country, how those rights are withering away under the Bush/Cheney regime, and why removing the perpetrators from office is the best solution for bringing our country back into the (relatively) civilized world. But before doing that I want to point out that when I speak of the need for our nation to reengage in the protection of “minority rights”, I am speaking of my own rights as much as anyone else’s. Though I am a white male citizen of theUnited States, I am nevertheless a minority, as are most DUers. We are a minority because of what we believe, what we say, and what we write. And as such, our rights in this country are under attack and perhaps in need of as much protection as are the rights of genetically determined minorities, many who are minorities in more than one respect. (democraticunderground.com’s interpretation.)

If nothing else, at least in my opinion, you have to appreciate the effort and tenacity of individuals who want to turn a stepladder into a wishing well.

According to Webster: con·sti·tu·tion, 1. The act or process of composing, setting up, or establishing. 2.a. The composition or structure of something; makeup. b. The physical makeup of a person: The system of fundamental laws and principles that prescribes the nature, functions, and limits of a government or another institution. b. The document on which such a system is recorded.

According to:  (http://dictionary.reference.com/browse/constitutional+decocracy)

“Constitutional democracy; a system of government based on popular sovereignty in which the structures, powers, and limits of government are set forth in a Constitution.” Dictionary.com’s 21st Century Lexicon, Copyright © 2003-2011 Dictionary.com, LLC,  Cite This Source

According to Wikipedia: Liberal democracy, also known as constitutional democracy, is a common form of representative democracy. According to the principles of liberal democracy, elections should be free and fair, and the political process should be competitive. Political pluralism is usually defined as the presence of multiple and distinct political parties. A liberal democracy may take various constitutional forms: it may be a constitutional republic; as the United States, India, Germany or Brazil, or a constitutional monarchy, such as the United Kingdom, Japan, Canada or Spain. It may have a presidential system (United States, Brazil), a parliamentary system (Westminster system, UK and Commonwealth countries, Spain), or a hybrid, semi-presidential system (France). The Liberal democracies usually have universal suffrage, granting all adult citizens the right to vote regardless of race, gender or property ownership. Historically, however, some countries regarded as liberal democracies have had a more limited franchise, and some do not have secret ballots. There may also be qualifications such as voters being required to register before being allowed to vote. The decisions made through elections are made not by all of the citizens, but rather by those who choose to participate by voting. The liberal democratic constitution defines the democratic character of the state. The purpose of a constitution is often seen as a limit on the authority of the government. The Anglo-American political tradition emphasises the separation of powers, an independent judiciary, and a system of checks and balances between branches of government. Many European democracies are more likely to emphasise the importance of the state being a Rechtsstaat that follows the principle of rule of law. Governmental authority is legitimately exercised only in accordance with written, publicly disclosed laws adopted and enforced in accordance with established procedure. Many democracies use federalism—also known as vertical separation of powers—in order to prevent abuse and increase public input by dividing governing powers between municipal, provincial and national governments.

 (W.A.M.) According to Wikipedia: Rechtsstaat, (German: Rechtsstaat) is a concept in continental European legal thinking, originally borrowed from German jurisprudence, which can be translated as “legal state”, “state of law”, “state of justice”, or “state of rights”. It is a “constitutional state” in which the exercise of governmental power is constrained by the law, and is often tied to the Anglo-American concept of the rule of law. In a Rechtsstaat, the power of the state is limited in order to protect citizens from the arbitrary exercise of authority. In a Rechtsstaat the citizens share legally based civil liberties and they can use the courts. A country cannot be a liberal democracy without first being a Rechtsstaat.

Rights and freedoms

In practice, democracies do have specific limits on specific freedoms. There are various legal limitations such as copyright and laws against defamation. There may be limits on anti-democratic speech, on attempts to undermine human rights, and on the promotion or justification of terrorism. In the United States more than in Europe, during the Cold War, such restrictions applied to Communists. Now they are more commonly applied to organizations perceived as promoting terrorism or the incitement of group hatred. Examples include anti-terrorism legislation, the shutting down of Hezbollah satellite broadcasts, and some laws against hate speech. Critics claim that these limitations may go too far and that there may be no due and fair judicial process.

Correct me if I’m wrong, but I’m reading this drivel to define that supporting liberalism is to the support of looking the other way when the question of right and wrong arises, to pursue a particular agenda.

According to Wikipedia: Liberalism, (from the Latin liberalis, “of freedom”) is the belief in the importance of liberty and equal rights. Liberals espouse a wide array of views depending on their understanding of these principles, but most liberals support such fundamental ideas as constitutions, liberal democracy, free and fair elections, human rights, capitalism, free trade, and the freedom of religion. These ideas are widely accepted, even by political groups that do not openly profess a liberal ideological orientation. Liberalism encompasses several intellectual trends and traditions, but the dominant variants are classical liberalism, which became popular in the eighteenth century, and social liberalism, which became popular in the twentieth century.

According to Wikipedia: Conservatism (Latin: conservare, “to preserve”) is a political and social philosophy that promotes the maintenance of traditional institutions and supports, at the most, minimal and gradual change in society. Some conservatives seek to preserve things as they are, emphasizing stability and continuity, while others oppose modernism and seek a return to the way things were. The first established use of the term in a political context was by François-René de Chateaubriand in 1819, following the French Revolution. The term has since been used to describe a wide range of views.

According to Wikipedia: Constitutionalism has a variety of meanings. Most generally, it is “a complex of ideas, attitudes, and patterns of behavior elaborating the principle that the authority of government derives from and is limited by a body of fundamental law”.

American Constitutionalism would be more correctly defined as a complex of ideas, attitudes, and patterns of behavior elaborating the principle that the authority of government derives from the people, and is limited by a body of fundamental law.

Cutting to the chase, when all is said and done, the “Good Old Boys Club” on either side of the aisle, is neither conservative, nor liberal, it’s the “Good Old Boys Club.

Wise up America, let the “Good Old Boys play basketball or golf on their own time, visit any workplace in America and you will find women doing twice the work for half the money.

 Crusader Rabbit…

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