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Author Topic:   PC Gone Too Far
Percy
Member
Posts: 15622
From: New Hampshire
Joined: 12-23-2000
Member Rating: 4.4


Message 631 of 725 (787168)
07-06-2016 8:05 AM
Reply to: Message 621 by ringo
07-05-2016 11:53 AM


Re: Slavery is not similar to genocide
Boy, can your understanding ever go awry. You said, "Percy has admitted that the definition of genocide is controversial." No, he hasn't, not even close.

You're misconstruing my correction of your other error. You had claimed there was a consensus in Canada that what happened to your aboriginal people was genocide. It turns out, as I described in Message 525, that it's much more equivocal, that they're debating whether it should be called genocide or cultural genocide or even something else. They *definitely* and in no uncertain terms are *not* debating the meaning of the word "genocide," and I *definitely* have *not* "admitted that the definition of genocide is controversial."

You're arguing with the dictionary, Don Quixote.

--Percy


This message is a reply to:
 Message 621 by ringo, posted 07-05-2016 11:53 AM ringo has responded

Replies to this message:
 Message 636 by ringo, posted 07-06-2016 3:28 PM Percy has acknowledged this reply

    
Percy
Member
Posts: 15622
From: New Hampshire
Joined: 12-23-2000
Member Rating: 4.4


Message 632 of 725 (787169)
07-06-2016 8:42 AM
Reply to: Message 622 by ringo
07-05-2016 12:07 PM


Re: Slavery is not similar to genocide
Percy writes:

Percy writes:

Since evil has no objective meaning, what you're really saying is that when people do evil in your eyes it justifies violence against them.


What I'm really saying is what I'm really saying, not what you make up.

I'm not making it up. I originally stated that your tactic of demonization brings more conflict, not less. Your answer so far has been, in effect, "No, it doesn't," which isn't very helpful, so I used the Iraq example to help draw out some detail of your views. Saddam was committing evil in Iraq. Can I assume you were against intervention and against Canada joining the coalition? So how are you to stop him without violence? How would you have stopped Hitler without violence?

The problem with, "We have to stop evil, but without violence" has a next step that can best be described as, "Non-violent approaches to evil don't work, I guess we'll have to increase military pressure." The next step after that can best be described as, "Charge!"

Anyone against both violence and evil will quickly learn that non-violence is ineffective. But violence is chaotic, often has unintended consequences, and can make things worse, like ISIS. So what to do? Well, if you're going to insist on the term evil, then you're going to have to learn how to get along with evil.

Percy writes:

I'm suggesting that evil is a subjective criteria that will much more often lead you astray and away from sound decisions.


And I'm saying that slavery is as goddamn close to universally evil as anything you can think of. There are no "sound decisions" that support slavery.

What was really meant was that subjective criteria like evil hinder your ability to make sound decisions.

But we certainly can't have anything as "universally evil" as slavery going on, can we. You should mount your horse and invade India.

Since we're drawing a parallel between slavery and Nazi Germany in this thread, why do you support monuments to the Confederacy but (presumably) not to the SS?

I support the preservation of all history everywhere, within constraints. If all the permits have been signed then the building or road goes up and history is destroyed. I frequently see news stories from New York and London of building excavations uncovering important history. Sometimes the history is important enough to stop work for a time, but generally the historians and archeologists have to work quickly before work resumes and history is destroyed.

Your question also touches on something Caffeine asked earlier, monuments to despots always hated by the people, so see my Message 148.

Percy writes:

What's with the attack on objectivity?


I'll continue to attack objectivity in this context until you can show us the objective criteria that would justify re-instating slavery.

What on earth are you talking about? I support objectivity, not slavery. I'm arguing that firing up your passions with emotion-laden terms like evil will more often lead you to conflict rather than peace and resolution.

Percy writes:

History isn't a sequence of morality plays. It isn't a battle between good and evil.


All of life is a battle between good and evil.

There you go with another absurd claim. We'll add it to the list.

You good/evil guys sound more and more like the religionists, but instead of "He's a good Christian" and "He's a bad Christian," you have "He's good" and "He's evil."

--Percy


This message is a reply to:
 Message 622 by ringo, posted 07-05-2016 12:07 PM ringo has responded

Replies to this message:
 Message 638 by ringo, posted 07-06-2016 3:44 PM Percy has responded

    
Percy
Member
Posts: 15622
From: New Hampshire
Joined: 12-23-2000
Member Rating: 4.4


(1)
Message 633 of 725 (787170)
07-06-2016 10:02 AM
Reply to: Message 624 by NoNukes
07-05-2016 3:43 PM


Re: Slavery is not similar to genocide
NoNukes writes:

That's not a definition. That sounds like the Supreme Court in the 1960's telling us that they can't define pornography but they know it is when they see it.

Did I claim that my statement was a definition Percy?

If you're going to post words beneath a request for a definition, then you need to in some way make clear you're not answering the question, else reasonable people everywhere will assume you're providing a definition.

Beyond that, haven't I already, repeatedly offered you a definition?

I don't think so. Where? I can give you the definition that applies best to its use in this discussion straight out the dictionary. As an adjective evil is "morally wrong or bad; immoral; wicked". As a noun evil is "the force in nature that governs and gives rise to wickedness and sin" or "the wicked or immoral part of someone or something". As a philosophical concept evil is an aporia. To me it is obviously subjective with no proper role in conclusions derived from objective analysis.

I will repeat what I believe is sufficient definition here. Evil are acts that impart substantial harm to humans without adequate justification.

Except for the quibble that you can't repeat this since you've never said it before, thanks for finally offering a definition. Does this include only physical harm, or also mental harm. In any case, you seem to understand the broad ambiguities.

I've quoted a philosopher and an encyclopedia about problems using the term evil, and the best you can do ask why we should debate definitions?

I gave you a reason why the definition is not an issue in this particular debate; namely that there is no disagreement among us whatsoever that the treatment received by Africans under slavery was morally unsound. If I am wrong about that absence of disagreement, then please just say so.

We all agree slavery is wrong, "morally unsound," as you say, but now you've left out your word "evil", which is the big problem. "Evil" as a classification of people is problematic not just because of the inherent ambiguity but also because of the overtones and connotations of wickedness and villainy, even savagery and depravity.

It isn't like your agenda isn't clear. You want to stigmatize portions of history

Ouch.

I am attaching a stigma to slavery?
...
I have to admit that I find the idea that I am responsible for a stigma attached to slave owners to be facially ridiculous.

Uh, NoNukes, the context is this discussion. You're trying to convince the other side that Southerners should be stigmatized due to their embracing of slavery, that they're evil and therefore deserving of no commemoration, particularly those who held positions of high responsibility in the Confederacy. Let he who is without evil (whatever that is) have the first monument.

I'll answer a few of your other replies here. From your Message 625:

NoNukes in Message 625 writes:

You still miss. An objective description of history NEVER would get into justifications.

Really? Isn't it only via an investigation of motives and justifications that there is anything really to discuss here?

In context, Xongsmith is talking about *your* motives and justifications. It is they that have no place in history, i.e., your judgment of Southerners as evil has no place in history. If the North thought Southerners evil then that would of course be included with the rest of the historical analysis. But that *you* think the South evil? Doesn't belong in history.

From your Message 626:

NoNukes in Message 626 writes:

quote:
Current scholarship regards the change in southern writings about slavery in the 1830s as more of style and tone than of substance. Southerners did not move from an anti- to a proslavery position. Slaveholders were less troubled about whether slavery was right than precisely why it was right and how its justice could best be demonstrated. Unsympathetic to the Perfectionism embraced by many of their abolitionist counterparts, proslavery advocates always saw evils in slavery, as they were sure they would in any terrestrial system of society and government. All earthly arrangements they believed, necessarily required men to cope as best they could with sin; it was the relative merits of social systems, their comparative success in dealing with inherent evil that should be discussed.

...
Also we can see the open admission of balancing of good an evil.

I've said pretty much the same thing a couple of times. From my Message 573:

me in Message 573 writes:

The arguments for the benefits to master and slave were largely not new. The South didn't invent them and already believed them before cotton was king, though certainly they elaborated upon them. It was how arguments weighed out in the balance in Southern and Northern minds that changed.

From my Message 608:

me in Message 608 writes:

The South, witnessing the same expansion of slavery and seeing it accrue to their benefit, emphasized the benefits of slavery that they already believed, but with slave populations and the Southern economy growing, balancing all the factors delivered a different answer.

More from your Message 626:

NoNukes in Message 626 writes:

quote:
As William Harber explained in his Memoir on Slavery, "the condition of our whole existence is but to struggle with evils--compare them--to chose between them, and so far as we can to mitigate them. To say that there is evil in any institution is only to say that it is human." With the intensification of the slavery controversy, however, apologists began to acknowledge the institutions short comings less openly and to consider only the positive aspects of the system. "I see great evils in slavery." George Fitzhugh confessed to a friend, "but I think in a controversial work I ought not to admit them."

Here then is an example of exactly the sentiment I proposed being openly expressed by a southern writer.

Yes, pretty much consistent with what I've been saying and what one would expect as a debate of ideas unfolds.

I've acknowledged that the change was not sudden, so I am curious as to why you continue to say otherwise.

I was correcting your implication that I was only aware of changing views and not of changing circumstances.

The cotton gin creates a situation where the slavery generates profits, and then a trend builds under which slavery is non-evil?

It works against finding common ground when you continually ask whether I think slavery okay, and continually use contemporary judgments of historical practices that I've argued have no place in historical analysis. We all agree slavery is wrong. If you're going to insist on "slavery is evil" then until you can come up with a definition of evil that is consistent with developing historically objective perspectives we're not going to agree.

Your argument does nothing to convince me that slavery was not a self centered exploitation of Africans without regard for the lives and family of an entire segment of humanity.

You keep bringing this back to slavery as if it were the main point of contention. It's not. Your position is that Southerners were evil and undeserving of commemoration regarding the Civil War, yet you instead keep defending your position that "slavery is evil," where our only difference is terminological.

--Percy


This message is a reply to:
 Message 624 by NoNukes, posted 07-05-2016 3:43 PM NoNukes has responded

Replies to this message:
 Message 637 by NoNukes, posted 07-06-2016 3:35 PM Percy has responded

    
1.61803
Member
Posts: 2678
From: Lone Star State USA
Joined: 02-19-2004
Member Rating: 2.7


(1)
Message 634 of 725 (787172)
07-06-2016 10:54 AM
Reply to: Message 596 by Percy
07-02-2016 7:49 AM


Re: Slavery is not similar to genocide
Percy writes:

Is there any broad agreement on what evil is, especially when applied to nearly all the people of an entire nation? Didn't both sides take up arms in defense of principles they felt important? Attempts at an answer quickly bring the realization that evil is highly subjective.

I will answer this with* what recently passed

Nobel prize winner Mr.
Elie Wiesel said once speaking about WWII

quote:
Has Germany ever asked us to forgive?” Mr. Wiesel asked. “To my knowledge, no such plea was ever made. With whom am I to speak about forgiveness, I, who don’t believe in collective guilt? Who am I to believe in collective innocence?”

Percy writes:

Speaking of intervention and interference, it can be argued that the main cause of the Civil War was the threat of interference by the North in Southern affairs. Whether slavery was right or wrong, it was an internal affair of each Southern state in which the North had no business.

So the North was to just continue to practice laissez faire devil may care policy of the the Souths continued practice of slavery to include the desire to allow this practice to spread. In your opinion it is not for the Federal government to step in and put a stop to states practicing and perpetuating slavery. Because it is non of their business. Really?

And for the record Slavery was wrong and still is wrong, no 'whether' to it. And if any states wish to practice states rights to re-institute slavery they will have to endure the full force of the Federal government to stop it.

Percy writes:

The argument that the wrongness (or evil as you prefer) of slavery justified Northern intervention was rejected by the North (including especially Lincoln) from the beginning of the war to nearly the end. At a political level the North was fighting to preserve the Union and the South to preserve States' Rights.

Yes States Rights to continue the abject inhuman practice of the human slavery.

Edited by 1.61803, : changed what to with


"You were not there for the beginning. You will not be there for the end. Your knowledge of what is going on can only be superficial and relative" William S. Burroughs

This message is a reply to:
 Message 596 by Percy, posted 07-02-2016 7:49 AM Percy has responded

Replies to this message:
 Message 641 by Percy, posted 07-07-2016 7:22 AM 1.61803 has not yet responded

  
ringo
Member
Posts: 13023
From: frozen wasteland
Joined: 03-23-2005
Member Rating: 3.5


Message 635 of 725 (787176)
07-06-2016 3:22 PM
Reply to: Message 623 by xongsmith
07-05-2016 1:51 PM


Re: Slavery is not similar to genocide
xongsmith writes:

An objective description of history NEVER would get into justifications. BY DEFINITION, any objective criteria that would justify anything would be a non-sequitur.


Uh, that's what I'm saying. That's why objectivity is not applicable.
This message is a reply to:
 Message 623 by xongsmith, posted 07-05-2016 1:51 PM xongsmith has responded

Replies to this message:
 Message 639 by xongsmith, posted 07-06-2016 4:57 PM ringo has responded

  
ringo
Member
Posts: 13023
From: frozen wasteland
Joined: 03-23-2005
Member Rating: 3.5


Message 636 of 725 (787177)
07-06-2016 3:28 PM
Reply to: Message 631 by Percy
07-06-2016 8:05 AM


Re: Slavery is not similar to genocide
Percy writes:

You had claimed there was a consensus in Canada that what happened to your aboriginal people was genocide.


We're coming to that understanding. You can quibble all you want about whether there is a consensus yet or not. I, for one, have not heard anybody arguing against it being genocide even if some of us are still a little reluctant to admit it.

Percy writes:

It turns out, as I described in Message 525, that it's much more equivocal, that they're debating whether it should be called genocide or cultural genocide or even something else.


So, if it's being debated, there's a controversy.

Percy writes:

You're arguing with the dictionary, Don Quixote.


Bing-fucking-go! Dictionaries don't lead; they follow.
This message is a reply to:
 Message 631 by Percy, posted 07-06-2016 8:05 AM Percy has acknowledged this reply

  
NoNukes
Member
Posts: 9541
From: Central NC USA
Joined: 08-13-2010
Member Rating: 3.2


Message 637 of 725 (787178)
07-06-2016 3:35 PM
Reply to: Message 633 by Percy
07-06-2016 10:02 AM


Re: Slavery is not similar to genocide
If you're going to post words beneath a request for a definition, then you need to in some way make clear you're not answering the question, else reasonable people everywhere will assume you're providing a definition.

Or you need to understand that there are other ways to respond to questions other than by giving you what you want. Your request for a definition when we all agree that slavery is evil seemed, and still seems, pretty pointless to me. But your accusation that I have refused to provide a definition is just wrong. Your attempt to provide a reason why I won't provide a definition when I have already done so is completely bogus.

Except for the quibble that you can't repeat this since you've never said it before, thanks for finally offering a definition.

You are mistaken, Percy. I provided a definition in a previous post to which you responded. Here is part of your response to me to the post in which I provided the exact same definition I provided here. From Message 544

Percy writes:

But how are you going to reconcile your definition of evil with other people's, for example, those who believe abortion is evil, or that homosexuality is evil?

Your accusation, as well as this line of questioning are off the mark. The rest of your post does not seem to provide anything new. Slavery was evil, but apparently that does not reflect badly on the folks who practiced slavery, at least if I let you tell it. Instead, somehow I am the responsible for the stigma attached to slavery while the folks who actually practiced the institution are blameless.

No, Percy, the antebellum South stigmatized itself for all of time by their actions.

ABE:

I add here that I don't claim that anyone other than the folks who actually were involved in owning, trading, working, punishing, slaves and promulgating and defending slavery or other particular acts falls into the category of not being a worthy of a park statute. Of course such comments would not to extend to all southerners in general. However my comments would explain why I believe statues of folks like Jefferson Davis or Nathan Bedford Forest belong in museum's rather than in places of honor.

Edited by NoNukes, : No reason given.

Edited by NoNukes, : No reason given.

Edited by NoNukes, : No reason given.

Edited by NoNukes, : No reason given.

Edited by NoNukes, : No reason given.


Under a government which imprisons any unjustly, the true place for a just man is also in prison. Thoreau: Civil Disobedience (1846)

History will have to record that the greatest tragedy of this period of social transition was not the strident clamor of the bad people, but the appalling silence of the good people. Martin Luther King

If there are no stupid questions, then what kind of questions do stupid people ask? Do they get smart just in time to ask questions? Scott Adams


This message is a reply to:
 Message 633 by Percy, posted 07-06-2016 10:02 AM Percy has responded

Replies to this message:
 Message 642 by Percy, posted 07-07-2016 8:19 AM NoNukes has responded

    
ringo
Member
Posts: 13023
From: frozen wasteland
Joined: 03-23-2005
Member Rating: 3.5


(1)
Message 638 of 725 (787179)
07-06-2016 3:44 PM
Reply to: Message 632 by Percy
07-06-2016 8:42 AM


Re: Slavery is not similar to genocide
Percy writes:

Saddam was committing evil in Iraq. Can I assume you were against intervention and against Canada joining the coalition?


Yes.

Percy writes:

So how are you to stop him without violence?


I wouldn't have stopped him.

Percy writes:

How would you have stopped Hitler without violence?


I have said that I would fight to stop slavery. I would also fight to stop other instances of genocide, such as the Holocaust. There are no easy answers for when to fight and when not to.

But the point of this thread is not about whether to fight or not; it's about whether to memorialize both sides equally. I've been consistent on that: no memorials to the SS, no memorials to Confederates, no memorials to Saddam, no memorials to serial killers, etc.

Percy writes:

But we certainly can't have anything as "universally evil" as slavery going on, can we. You should mount your horse and invade India.


Your vaunted "objectivity" seems to have missed an important point: The North would have abolished slavery by non-violent means if it could. The South started the violence. Violence to support violence.

Percy writes:

I support objectivity, not slavery.


You support looking at history objectively. That suggests that there are possible circumstances under which slavery would be justifiable.

That's like looking objectively at whether or not to feed your children.

Percy writes:

You good/evil guys sound more and more like the religionists, but instead of "He's a good Christian" and "He's a bad Christian," you have "He's good" and "He's evil."


I think that's preferable to getting out your slide rule to decide whether or not to buy a slave.
This message is a reply to:
 Message 632 by Percy, posted 07-06-2016 8:42 AM Percy has responded

Replies to this message:
 Message 643 by Percy, posted 07-07-2016 9:21 AM ringo has responded

  
xongsmith
Member
Posts: 1776
From: massachusetts US
Joined: 01-01-2009
Member Rating: 3.4


Message 639 of 725 (787180)
07-06-2016 4:57 PM
Reply to: Message 635 by ringo
07-06-2016 3:22 PM


Re: Slavery is not similar to genocide
Ringo persists with:

xongsmith writes:

An objective description of history NEVER would get into justifications. BY DEFINITION, any objective criteria that would justify anything would be a non-sequitur.


Uh, that's what I'm saying. That's why objectivity is not applicable.

Not applicable to your own discussion. Which isn't Percy's discussion.

For him and me it's the other way: That's why subectivity is not applicable.

Good. Now we don't have to talk past each other anymore.


- xongsmith, 5.7d

This message is a reply to:
 Message 635 by ringo, posted 07-06-2016 3:22 PM ringo has responded

Replies to this message:
 Message 644 by ringo, posted 07-07-2016 11:42 AM xongsmith has responded

    
bluegenes
Member
Posts: 3086
From: U.K.
Joined: 01-24-2007
Member Rating: 3.5


Message 640 of 725 (787190)
07-07-2016 6:26 AM
Reply to: Message 615 by ringo
07-04-2016 11:37 AM


Re: Slavery is not similar to genocide
ringo writes:

bluegenes writes:

You seem to be claiming that a rapidly expanding population group of slaves were the victims of a genocide. Instead of saying that over and over again, try to support it with data from history.

Percy has admitted that the definition of genocide is "controversial" - i.e. not as simplistic as you insist. We'll wait for you to catch up.

You seem to be claiming that a rapidly expanding population group of slaves [the 19th century African Americans] were the victims of a genocide. Instead of saying that over and over again, try to support it with data from history.

I'm well ahead, not catching up. The discussion in Canada about whether or not treatment of the Aboriginals should be described as genocide is based around a discussion of how they were treated and why. It isn't based on anyone claiming that slavery is genocide. If it was, the slave owning Aboriginal cultures would be being accused of genocidal behaviour.

Do you think that the Aboriginal slave cultures were guilty of genocide?


This message is a reply to:
 Message 615 by ringo, posted 07-04-2016 11:37 AM ringo has responded

Replies to this message:
 Message 645 by ringo, posted 07-07-2016 11:49 AM bluegenes has responded

  
Percy
Member
Posts: 15622
From: New Hampshire
Joined: 12-23-2000
Member Rating: 4.4


Message 641 of 725 (787194)
07-07-2016 7:22 AM
Reply to: Message 634 by 1.61803
07-06-2016 10:54 AM


Re: Slavery is not similar to genocide
1.61803 writes:

I will answer this with* what recently passed

If the "*" was to indicate a footnote, there was no footnote.

Nobel prize winner Mr. Elie Wiesel said once speaking about WWII

quote:
“Has Germany ever asked us to forgive?” Mr. Wiesel asked. “To my knowledge, no such plea was ever made. With whom am I to speak about forgiveness, I, who don’t believe in collective guilt? Who am I to believe in collective innocence?”

When applied to the South Mr. Wiesel seems to agree with my position, no collective guilt. No collective innocence, either.

So the North was to just continue to practice laissez faire devil may care policy of the the Souths continued practice of slavery to include the desire to allow this practice to spread. In your opinion it is not for the Federal government to step in and put a stop to states practicing and perpetuating slavery. Because it is none of their business. Really?

I haven't the time to summarize the politics leading up to the Civil War, but realize that the South was part of the federal government, too, with votes in Congress. Secession had been threatened many times, but it happened when it did because the South felt a tipping point had been passed and that their waning political power at the federal level would not any longer be able to hold off the powers of abolition.

And for the record Slavery was wrong and still is wrong, no 'whether' to it. And if any states wish to practice states rights to re-institute slavery they will have to endure the full force of the Federal government to stop it.

Well, thank goodness for that. Here we were all worried that slavery was going to make a US comeback.

Yes States Rights to continue the abject inhuman practice of the human slavery.

This is by now a familiar approach in this thread, that the other side in this discussion has taken their position because they just don't understand how horrible slavery is.

Our position is based upon an understanding that moral and emotional solutions cause much harm, or to translate this into the other side's preferred terminology, evil.

--Percy


This message is a reply to:
 Message 634 by 1.61803, posted 07-06-2016 10:54 AM 1.61803 has not yet responded

    
Percy
Member
Posts: 15622
From: New Hampshire
Joined: 12-23-2000
Member Rating: 4.4


Message 642 of 725 (787197)
07-07-2016 8:19 AM
Reply to: Message 637 by NoNukes
07-06-2016 3:35 PM


Re: Slavery is not similar to genocide
NoNukes writes:

Or you need to understand that there are other ways to respond to questions other than by giving you what you want.

Like this excellent example of stonewalling?

Your request for a definition when we all agree that slavery is evil...

Except that we don't "all agree that slavery is evil." Evil is a subjective term with different meanings according to person and context. Your own attempt at a definition admitted to the broad ambiguities.

Your attempt to provide a reason why I won't provide a definition when I have already done so is completely bogus.

I was speaking of your failure to provide a definition up to that point. In a subsequent paragraph you attempted a definition, your first. As I said, it admitted to the broad ambiguities. Here it is again from your Message 624:

NoNukes in Message 624 writes:

I will repeat what I believe is sufficient definition here. Evil are acts that impart substantial harm to humans without adequate justification. I leave open the question of whether there are acts performed not against humans might also be evil. Yes there are times when applying that definition will raise controversy, because we might question harm and justification. But with regards to slavery, those sometimes difficult questions are settled issues in the minds of everyone here, including you.

Yes, you might well "question harm and justification." Has no evil been committed against a slave who was never harmed without sufficient justification? Mustn't there be some more fundamental principle for why slavery is wrong?

And no, these are not "settled issues in the minds of everyone here, including you." I believe slavery wrong based upon a moral principle, that one human being shouldn't own another. Harming other human beings is wrong independent of slavery and is another moral principle.

You are mistaken, Percy. I provided a definition in a previous post to which you responded. Here is part of your response to me to the post in which I provided the exact same definition I provided here. From Message 544

Well now you're just way off. You didn't provide a definition, just talked about evil as if a definition existed. That's why I likened it to the Supreme Court's comment about not defining pornography but knowing it when they see it. (You might find it easier to just type [msg=544] instead of [mid=786843].)

Percy writes:

But how are you going to reconcile your definition of evil with other people's, for example, those who believe abortion is evil, or that homosexuality is evil?

Your accusation, as well as this line of questioning are off the mark.

It isn't an accusation, but anyway, to the contrary, they're central to the problem with your approach. If in your eyes evil is sufficient justification for action, how can you deny anyone's call to action based upon what they think evil?

Slavery was evil, but apparently that does not reflect badly on the folks who practiced slavery, at least if I let you tell it.

You cannot continue using a term you won't define (the one you provided is sorely inadequate). Let me try to define it for you:

Evil (adjective): persistently and deliberately violating agreed upon moral principle or principles
Evil (noun): the persistent and deliberate violation of agreed upon moral principle or principles

At least it's consistent, concrete and general enough to actually discuss.

Instead, somehow I am the responsible for the stigma attached to slavery while the folks who actually practiced the institution are blameless.

Yeah, right, we blame you for making slavery seem bad. Recently your writing seems more for effect than to support your position.

No, Percy, the antebellum South stigmatized itself for all of time by their actions.

Yes, judge.

--Percy


This message is a reply to:
 Message 637 by NoNukes, posted 07-06-2016 3:35 PM NoNukes has responded

Replies to this message:
 Message 647 by NoNukes, posted 07-07-2016 12:11 PM Percy has acknowledged this reply

    
Percy
Member
Posts: 15622
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Member Rating: 4.4


Message 643 of 725 (787199)
07-07-2016 9:21 AM
Reply to: Message 638 by ringo
07-06-2016 3:44 PM


Re: Slavery is not similar to genocide
ringo writes:

I have said that I would fight to stop slavery. I would also fight to stop other instances of genocide, such as the Holocaust. There are no easy answers for when to fight and when not to.

Yes, you're right, there are no easy answers about when to fight, but the point I was leading to is that fighting is not often a good answer. History tells us that war often lacks objective support, rarely achieves desired outcomes, and has many unintended consequences, not to mention the expected consequences of death and destruction. To the extent that evil implies an imperative to rectify it can only increase conflict, and we already have enough of that.

But the point of this thread is not about whether to fight or not; it's about whether to memorialize both sides equally. I've been consistent on that: no memorials to the SS, no memorials to Confederates, no memorials to Saddam, no memorials to serial killers, etc.

Actually, preserving history is the point of this thread. The memorial in question is a record of Southern feeling about the Civil War 120 years ago. NoNukes might describe it as an expression of Lost Cause sentiments. I understand we would disagree about a proposal to erect a memorial to Southern war dead today, but that's not at issue here. The key question is whether bygone passions or detachment should prevail in deciding the future of a very old monument.

Your vaunted "objectivity" seems to have missed an important point: The North would have abolished slavery by non-violent means if it could. The South started the violence. Violence to support violence.

Yes, most certainly the North would have wished to abolish slavery peaceably, but the South wanted peace, too. The South expressed strong wishes that she be left alone in pursuing her own course as an independent nation. She attempted to negotiate payment for federal properties (like Fort Sumter) but was rebuffed. Regardless who fired first (while Fort Sumter marked the beginning of the Civil War, federal troops fired on Baltimore secessionists before Lincoln's inauguration and a couple months before Fort Sumter), given the North's position that secession was illegal and that the South must be made to conform with the constitution, conflict was inevitable.

Percy writes:

I support objectivity, not slavery.


You support looking at history objectively. That suggests that there are possible circumstances under which slavery would be justifiable.

I don't myself see how objectivity might change conclusions that slavery is wrong on moral grounds, but I'm open to discussing any ideas you might have.

Percy writes:

You good/evil guys sound more and more like the religionists, but instead of "He's a good Christian" and "He's a bad Christian," you have "He's good" and "He's evil."


I think that's preferable to getting out your slide rule to decide whether or not to buy a slave.

Objectivity and morality are not opposites, and they are not mutually exclusive.

About your specific scenario, is it morally wrong to buy slaves if the intent is to free them? This was a topic of active debate among abolitionists. Some argued it was wrong because it put a value on human life. Others argued more pragmatically that the ends justified these particular means. And of course some, like John Brown, argued that the ends justified any means.

--Percy


This message is a reply to:
 Message 638 by ringo, posted 07-06-2016 3:44 PM ringo has responded

Replies to this message:
 Message 646 by ringo, posted 07-07-2016 11:58 AM Percy has acknowledged this reply

    
ringo
Member
Posts: 13023
From: frozen wasteland
Joined: 03-23-2005
Member Rating: 3.5


Message 644 of 725 (787204)
07-07-2016 11:42 AM
Reply to: Message 639 by xongsmith
07-06-2016 4:57 PM


Re: Slavery is not similar to genocide
xongsmith writes:

That's why subectivity is not applicable.


Neither you nor Percy has explained how objectivity is applicable. How do you objectively evaluate slavery? How do you objectively decide whether or not to exterminate the Jews? How can you eliminate empathy from those discussions?
This message is a reply to:
 Message 639 by xongsmith, posted 07-06-2016 4:57 PM xongsmith has responded

Replies to this message:
 Message 648 by xongsmith, posted 07-07-2016 2:03 PM ringo has responded

  
ringo
Member
Posts: 13023
From: frozen wasteland
Joined: 03-23-2005
Member Rating: 3.5


Message 645 of 725 (787205)
07-07-2016 11:49 AM
Reply to: Message 640 by bluegenes
07-07-2016 6:26 AM


Re: Slavery is not similar to genocide
bluegenes writes:

The discussion in Canada about whether or not treatment of the Aboriginals should be described as genocide is based around a discussion of how they were treated and why.


It isn't a discussion of whether it "should" be described as genocide. The fact is that it has been described as genocide. We don't have people vociferously denying that it was genocide. We're mostly past denial.

bluegenes writes:

Do you think that the Aboriginal slave cultures were guilty of genocide?


Quite possibly they were. What does that have to do with anything? Does that justify us committing genocide?
This message is a reply to:
 Message 640 by bluegenes, posted 07-07-2016 6:26 AM bluegenes has responded

Replies to this message:
 Message 665 by bluegenes, posted 07-12-2016 2:05 AM ringo has responded

  
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