Archive for December, 2007

An Introduction, a Welcome, and a Beginning

December 31, 2007

Hello,

Hello and welcome to my Blog.  I should like to use this space to tell you a little about myself as well as my motivation for creating a blog.  My name is David, and at the time of writing this post I am a senior at Clark University, a private university in Massachusetts.  I am a philosophy major and an economics minor.  I read the news –not as often as I should–, gripe about the world, listen to music, and do all the other things that a normal college kid does.  So, why am I making a blog?   The motivations are twofold.  I increasingly find myself wondering if I am alone.  I do not mean ‘alone’ in the ‘I have no friends so I went to the Internet for pity’ sense of the word; rather that I sometimes wonder if I’m the only who feels that the best word to sum up the state of affairs of the country is in fact not a word, but some sort of exaggerated-hand-waving-arm-flapping gesture, thing.  So, I look to the wide world of the Internet to see if anyone else out there is on the same page as I am.  While I am confident that some of you will agree with me on most things, I am equally confident that some of you will disagree with me on most things; and certain that none of you will agree with me on everything.  Which takes us to the second purpose of this blog, debate.  It is my hope that this blog will be a place for people to discuss, argue, and debate things.  I have no doubt that every blog writer and forum owner who has come before me has wished his or her blog to be a place of great discourse; and likewise that no writer has ever wished to have his blog filled with tiresome hate mongering by both sides of every issue…but if all of them got to dream, so do I. 

I do not mean to suggest that every topic I discuss on this Blog will be serious.  Quite to the contrary, I fully intent to include things I find amusing, product reviews for stuff I intensely like or dislike, my random thoughts on movies, etc.  I will, however, make a good-faith effort to take advantage of the Categories feature supplied by the fine folks at WordPress. 

Please find below my promise to you, the reader.

1.  I shall make every effort to be sure of my facts (citing as appropriate) when I make statements of fact. 

2.  I sall distinguish as clearly as possible when I am making statement of fact, and when I am stating an opinion.

3.  I will be extremely cautious in my ability to delete or moderate comments and discussion on posts. 

Once more, I welcome you to my blog, welcome your ideas, your thoughts, your feedback and your experiences. 

Respectfully,

David Glenn

Privacy Rights Quotes (Last Updated 12/30/07)

December 31, 2007

1. The essence of a Fourth Amendment violation is “not the breaking of [a person’s] doors, and the rummaging of his drawers,” but rather is “the invasion of his indefeasible right of personal security, personal liberty and private property.”

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2. “The makers of our Constitution undertook to secure conditions favorable to the pursuit of happiness. They recognized the significance of man’s spiritual nature, of his feelings and of his intellect. They knew that only a part of the pain, pleasure and satisfactions of life are to be found in material things. They sought to protect Americans in their beliefs, their thoughts, their emotions and their sensations.”

Privacy Rights Quotes (Last Updated 12/30/07)

December 31, 2007

1. The essence of a Fourth Amendment violation is “not the breaking of [a person’s] doors, and the rummaging of his drawers,” but rather is “the invasion of his indefeasible right of personal security, personal liberty and private property.”

———————-

2. “The makers of our Constitution undertook to secure conditions favorable to the pursuit of happiness. They recognized the significance of man’s spiritual nature, of his feelings and of his intellect. They knew that only a part of the pain, pleasure and satisfactions of life are to be found in material things. They sought to protect Americans in their beliefs, their thoughts, their emotions and their sensations.”

General Rights Quotes (Last updated 12/30/07)

December 30, 2007

The very purpose of a Bill of Rights was to withdraw certain subjects from the vicissitudes of political controversy, to place them beyond the reach of majorities and officials, and to establish them as legal principles to be applied by the courts. One’s right to life, liberty, and property, to free speech, a free press, freedom of worship and assembly, and other fundamental rights may not be submitted to vote; they depend on the outcome of no elections

-Justice Jackson, US Supreme Court

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Church and State Quotes (Last updated 12/30/07)

December 30, 2007

1. School sponsorship of a religious message is impermissible because it sends the ancillary message to members of the audience who are nonadherants “that they are outsiders, not full members of the political community, and an accompanying message to adherants that they are insiders, favored members of the political community.” The delivery of such a message-over the school’s public address system, by a speaker representing the student body, under the supervision of school faculty, and pursuant to a school policy that explicitly and implicitly encourages public prayer-is not properly characterized as “private” speech.

-Justice Jackson, US Supreme Court

2. The legitimacy of secular legislation depends on whether the State can advance some justification for its law beyond its conformity to religious doctrine. A State can no more punish private behavior because of religious intolerance than it can punish such behavior because of racial animus. The Constitution cannot control such prejudices, but neither can it tolerate them. Private biases may be outside the reach of the law, but the law cannot, directly or indirectly, give them effect. No matter how uncomfortable a certain group may make the majority of this Court, we have held that mere public intolerance or animosity cannot constitutionally justify the deprivation of a person’s physical liberty

(Bowers v Hardwick, dissenting opinion).

Free Speech Quotes (Last updated 12/30/07)

December 30, 2007

1. We apply the limitations of the Constitution with no fear that freedom to be intellectually and spiritually diverse, or even contrary, will disintegrate the social organization. . . . [F]reedom to differ is not limited to things that do not matter much. That would be a mere shadow of freedom. The test of its substance is the right to differ as to things that touch the heart of the existing order. (Dissenting opinion, Bowers v Hardwick)

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2. In our system, undifferentiated fear or apprehension of disturbance is not enough to overcome the right to freedom of expression. Any departure from absolute regimentation may cause trouble. Any variation from the majority’s opinion may inspire fear. Any word spoken, in class, in the lunchroom, or on the campus, that deviates from the views of another person may start an argument or cause a disturbance. But our Constitution says we must take this risk ; and our history says that it is this sort of hazardous freedom — this kind of openness — that is the basis of our national strength and of the independence and vigor of Americans who grow up and live in this relatively permissive, often disputatious, society.
-Justice Fortas, Associate Justice Supreme Court

3. We must not confuse dissent with disloyalty. We must remember always that accusation is not proof and that conviction depends upon evidence and due process of law. We will not walk in fear, one of another. We will not be driven by fear into an age of unreason, if we dig deep in our history and our doctrine, and remember that we are not descended from fearful men— not from men who feared to write, to speak, to associate and to defend causes that were, for the moment, unpopular.  We can deny our heritage and our history, but we cannot escape responsibility for the result. There is no way for a citizen of a republic to abdicate his responsibilities. As a nation we have come into our full inheritance at a tender age. We proclaim ourselves, as indeed we are, the defenders of freedom, wherever it continues to exist in the world, but we cannot defend freedom abroad by deserting it at home. (Edward Murrow)

An Introduction to Quotations

December 30, 2007

If I have learned anything from my education experience, it is that regardless of the topic I am thinking of at the moment, there is someone of greater grace, clarity, and wisdom who has already thought on it, and probably written it down somewhere.  I seek to compile quotes which put into words the sentiments I feel.  Your contributions to this category are appreciated.