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Everything posted by spawnofthepilgrims

  1. That's true. It's not a bad idea, but from my research it doesn't seem that adequate. Some states require you to be living on your own first, which requires the parent's permission to begin with. Cases are usually only granted in instances of physical abuse, pregnancy, marriage (with parental permission), or military (with parental permission). Most of the decision seems to still be up to the parent, in most states you cannot even start the emancipation process by yourself if you are a minor. Furthermore, current work laws make it difficult for a minor to be completely self sufficient to begin with. This doesn't mean they are incapable, just that laws don't allow them to be. Every state seems to be different, but I found none that seem to be a solution. In theory, I would be open to a system that allowed minors to make their case before a court, but what we currently have doesn't impress me. It is better than nothing at all, but we can do a lot better.
  2. I can tell you that it's true that few people here will compliment you for being honest and next to none will pity you. They probably won't tell you "all you have to do is try" either. On some intellectual level you must have known that before you came here, so I can only assume you sincerely want to change based on that. That said, here goes. Being the person you want to be (one that is content with yourself and does not seek approval from others) will require taking every belief you have and holding it to the harshest criticism (Ayn Rand has said something similar, and I have found it very true). Base everything on what you know to be true (things that are provable, logical, based on reason). Throw out any inconsistencies in your beliefs. Take that time to really determine what your philosophy is and hold every decision you make in life to those standards. This is very important. Without it, it is easy for things to become chaotic and sad because you are basing your decisions on emotions you've never taken time to examine the source of. Objectivism can help you examine your beliefs, so take time to read Ayn Rand and other objectivist authors (nonfiction books as well) but it cannot save you from yourself. You cannot be consistent with your reality and lie. Lying denies reality. A lot of the personality quirks you mentioned are a result of not being consistent with or fully knowing your beliefs. Philosophy is very important, you will find it is linked to just about everything in life, but few people ever identify this. Being smart is great, but nothing without a moral background to help implement it. Do this first, apply what you've learned to every aspect of your life, and happiness will come. Anything less is a waste of life.
  3. A minor is someone who society has determined is not capable of making their own decisions. Adults make decisions for them and take responsibility for them in most situations. If someone were self sufficient, no part of their life would depend on others to survive (trade is obviously a means of being self sufficient as well, it does not mean they would have to grow their food, etc). Therefore, no one else has any claim to their life. This is something that can be proven. A billionaire trust fund baby would have to possess the capability to make good decisions with the money and be capable in other regards than finances or he would perish in a society where parasites were not allowed to thrive. This is the kind of system I would support, one that is based on capability. Age is not an accomplishment. If a minor decides to be self sufficient and thus no longer a minor, he is held responsible for every action he makes. Rights come with responsibilities. If he fails, rights are taken away and he cannot survive on his own. If he succeeds, it is no one's concern but his own. This would be the objective test and it is based entirely on results. If you want the right to live on your own, the test is living on your own. Your own ability will determine whether or not you were capable. If you want to vote, take a test that examines your knowledge on our political system and agree to all responsibilities that come with voting (you would have to create some number that would determine where you pass or fail, but I would prefer that to an age that is not based on capability at all). If you want to use the meat cutter at work, you agree to be legally responsible for any accidents. If you want to work at any job that you aren't considered old enough for now, you work there and either prove your capability or you don't. Your success would depend on your employer, as opposed to laws that dictate this for the employer like we have now. Any person's capability can be tested and rights should be based on nothing else. The gaining of the rights minors want would be linked directly to the responsibilities. This would also create an environment that fosters growth as opposed to irresponsibility. I still have no idea how a blood test can determine whether or not someone should be allowed to vote, so I cannot comment. A behavioral test would determine how well someone does according to society's standards, not how well they will do for their own sake. You have to give someone the chance to prove their capabilities. This is something that can be proven and could determine if they can use their rights without infringing upon the rights of others. If you value individualism, nothing else should matter. Those are standards everyone should be held to, regardless of age. There is, in fact, no such thing as arbitrary dreamland, only hell. Logic can always be proven and applied to real life, otherwise it is not logic. In order to be relying on the fallacy of imperfection, I would have to view or current system as a solution. I do not. I don't see anything as a solution that allows one person to be dictated by another based on nothing but what is considered to be the "average" person (one that reaches maturity at 18). I see it as an easy fix meant to avoid the problem. The problem cannot be fixed until we identify what makes one capable to begin with. Certainly it is not age, I have seen far too many exceptions (and been one of them myself) for that to be true. As a logical person, I attempt to make solutions more perfect every day (I do not see this as an unattainable goal). Relying on a system that you believe is not perfect and not trying to make it better only allows for stagnation. If you believe our current system is as good as it can get, you will never have anything better, and apparently you will have to sacrifice some of your own beliefs to do so (based on what you said, which was that you thought there should be an objective standard). Otherwise, we can find a solution and grow. I know which scenario I will be happiest with and I have outlined the beginning plans for a new system above.
  4. I will gladly discuss things using logic, I never use anything else. I can agree that I said C=A or C=B. I do not agree with the conclusions you made from those statements. From C=A, you said surely I could see no connection between taxes and voting. I can, and I explained that several times. From C=B you decided that meant I wanted positive discrimination when I was listing options to eliminate taxation without representation in our current system. I will discuss logical implications of my own statements, but I will not agree to your opinions on those statements until you have backed them with logic. So far, I'm honestly not even sure what your arguments against mine are, I only know that you disagree with them.
  5. So things you know to be true, such as whether or not the person is self sufficient and willing to take responsibility for their actions is arbitrary? Since when? If someone meets that criteria, why should anyone have right to a second of their life? Giving an arbitrary age is easy, but not the only solution. Logic being applied to real life problems is never arbitrary, since logic relies on things that can be proven. Whether or not someone is self sufficient is not arbitrary, it can be proven. If someone agrees to terms that make sure they do not depend on anyone else for their survival (thus, no longer a minor) and they are held accountable to those things; why should age matter? Can you justify taking rights away from a mature 17 year old? For whose benefit is it to do so? Certainly not theirs. I don't understand the blood test comment.
  6. For me it would be a deal breaker. I love my boyfriend based on common values and goals. If he were to cheat, it would mean part of who I thought he was before was false. Thus, not the person I fell in love with. It all comes down to what kind of relationship you want and whether or not you can still have that when you're completely honest with yourself.
  7. True. Those are facts of reality as well. Facts of reality can be changed, but we do have to acknowledge them. If we eliminate taxes, taxation without representation is solved. Setting an arbitrary age as the "age of maturity" will still not be solved. As long as the subject is minor's rights and our tax system has not been changed, I will list taxation without representation as one of the problems. Fair enough? Would you mind telling me what you view as a child? I'm not clear on how you are defining that. Are you saying there is never a 16 year old that is mentally capable or an 18 year old that isn't? I don't think I can comment further until you clarify that.
  8. I'm Alive by Disturbed Divide by Disturbed
  9. I can only work with reality. Reality is that we do pay taxes. Until we change that, everyone should at least be represented. It would be irresponsible to try to ignore that fact. Any effort to try to change that people pay taxes, I will be the first to help. Until then, I'll work with what we do have and try to improve it. Paying taxes may always be evil, but as long as we do it I believe all people that are "mentally capable" should be represented. I hope I can help you figure out my position, I have tried to be very clear.
  10. I have always agreed with those conditions regarding whether or not someone can vote. It should be based on who they are as an individual, not as a stereotyped group. However, if someone has not reached those conditions (or whatever conditions society is using), how can you justify them paying taxes? You cannot refute that voting has a huge influence on how tax money is spent, which laws are made, and how they are enforced. My point has always been this: Voting should be based on objective terms, not an arbitrary age. If you have determined that someone cannot vote in a system where voting influences taxes (which is what we currently have, right or wrong), that person should not pay taxes. That has always been my opinion on the subject.
  11. I agree with you completely. If a group of people want to pay someone for their protection, they pay for that. Value for value. If they want a road, they do that too. I think it's the simplest system in the world. My concern is that we haven't changed the system yet and we are unlikely to do it all at once. If we are talking minor oppression, I feel taxation without representation is an issue until we change the tax system.
  12. It's not what I wished I had said, I said it. I said the tax system was immoral in post #40. In post #41 I said our tax system was not like the system I wanted. In post #45 I said there was no way to justify a tax system that didn't allow people to say where their money went. Then I went on to say if you cannot justify a system you should change it. So yes, let's do things based on what I said. That being said, it would be irresponsible of me to ignore reality. Reality is that we pay taxes, I wish that were different but it isn't. Therefore, I assumed we were talking about whether or not it was ethical for minors to pay taxes in a system where they cannot vote. I see no way to change everything wrong in our politics at once, we would do things in steps. If we want to change minor oppression, taxation without representation is a huge factor. I have explained the connection between voting and taxation in great detail, I have not seen anything proving that they aren't connected. I have also said paying taxes is not the only prerequisite to voting, however. I cannot make an argument that I never agreed with from the start. I didn't realize it were possible to go on a digression about taxes after several people state that taxes are immoral in a thread about minors rights. I started talking about it because people weren't focusing on the issue of minors anymore. They didn't seem to be okay with even talking about it until my views on taxes were clarified. I was fine with that, so I clarified. Let's move on. If you want to talk about whether or not minors should be able to vote, let's do that, using all factors involved (taxation is just one of them). It promises to be a much more productive subject than this.
  13. That's true, but do you honestly think politicians care as much about the public opinion of those that don't determine whether or not they are reelected? I do believe public outcry can be divided. If a law is specifically related to minors, they might be the only ones outcrying. How can that possibly hold as much weight as voters have? Let's say a bill comes up to decide whether or not teenagers should have curfews (related to driving and such). Most teenagers would be against that. Most parents would be for it (this is based on observation of character alone). I don't see those two sides holding equal weight. This would lead to more laws being biased towards adults over time. Therefore, minors would not be as oppressed if they could vote. I have said that tax paying is not the only prerequisite to voting. There is still a major link between tax paying and voting that you can't ignore. People that understand the value of money should more closely observe this link than anyone. Not only does it influence what purpose your money should be spent on, any time the government enforces property rights, contract breaches, etc they use tax dollars to do so. Salaries of lawmakers, salaries of policemen, salaries of judges, etc. I was never ignoring those other factors, I see the link very clearly. I do think people should decide whether or not they want to be taxed, anything else is robbery. I don't think a system that allowed people to pool their money together for a common goal would be unethical, however. This is assuming that it is completely voluntary and only those that participated determined its use. It could be similar to a toll road, everyone that uses it pays for it. Definitely not taxes judged by how things are currently done, but it is a system where money can be pooled together to achieve goals faster (that doesn't ignore individual rights). If our voting system remains the way it is, there is no way to justify minors being taxed. The link is that they cannot vote to determine their money's use and any protesting they have would be outweighed by people that can vote. Can you disprove any of these statements that link tax paying to voting? *Politicians are elected by voters *Politicians determine laws and influence how tax money is spent *Politicians are influenced by voters *Laws are enforced by government employees paid by tax dollars Furthermore, can you justify a system that bases how rights are given to individuals by an arbitrary age? It is unarguably the easy thing to do, but is it ethical?
  14. Correct me if I'm wrong, but didn't I tell you I wanted to change our current tax system? Weren't we also talking about ways to make our current system more consistent? If I can determine whether or not my money goes to taxes and how it spent, how is that not justified? Talking about the government holding your tax money to buy a sportscar is pretty ridiculous. Either you keep your money and save it yourself or you pool your money together with people that want the same thing to reach a goal faster. Either way, I see no reason why it wouldn't be ethical to determine exactly where your money is going. That's the tax system I want. I said voting was inadequate, I have always said that. However, we were talking about our current system and whether or not minors should pay taxes in it. So far I see a lot of criticism for my views, but no one listing alternatives. I would gladly welcome that sort of debate. I honestly don't care to debate with you over whether or not you "applied the rules of logic flawlessly to a very clear statement". I disagree with the conclusions you made from those statements (that, I will debate with you). I have explained to you my views. Explain yours. Otherwise, we're both wasting our time here.
  15. Here is the link between taxes and voting. In our current system, the only way we have to influence where tax dollars go is through voting. In my opinion, this is inadequate, but we are speaking in terms of things staying the same. Government funded healthcare is a popular example right now. The money would come from our tax dollars to pay for everyone else's healthcare. Those that want that may have voted for Obama and similar minded politicians. Others may have voted for someone else. The minor voted for neither, but their money will still be given to that purpose if certain bills are passed. The same would apply to any situation where the government spends tax money (I trust we don't need more examples, they are all around you). Voting directly affects who is making these decisions. The decisions made are directly related to how tax dollars are spent. Thus, it would logically follow that anyone not voting is not deciding how their money is being spent. I definitely see a connection, but other factors should come into play with voting since it involves more than just tax money. That said, neither C=>A or C=>B are accurate representations of what I said. I believe there is no way to justify having someone pay taxes without them determining how it is spent. This would lead to an entirely different system of taxes for things to be ideal. If things stay the same however, they can only do this through voting for elected officials to make these decisions for them. If you cannot justify a system, it should be changed. I do not want "positive discrimination." I want a system that does not base rights on an arbitrary age. This would mean that once a minor is willing to accept all of the responsibilities of rights, they should have them. If they fail, rights are taken away just as they are with adults. With the way things currently are, minors are accepting a responsibility of a right (paying taxes) without having the right. Voting should be the primary decision, and paying taxes would be just one of the responsibilities involved afterwards. It is not the logical chain of events for a cause to come after an effect just as it wouldn't be logical for a responsibility to come before a right. Voting first, then taxes. Minors being treated equal to adults means both good and bad things. Having just bad, or just good is still discrimination. At the very least, all you can ask for is consistency in a system. It is not consistent to say you are responsible enough to work and pay taxes, but not responsible enough to determine how your earned money is spent. The only way to be consistent with the current system is by only giving the responsibility to those that have the right. That is reality. I was not saying that either option is ideal, but these are our choices to be able to justify what we are currently doing. I personally am hoping for a much better system such as the one I described.
  16. Am I remembering what a government should be or the way they actually are? In our current system, taxes play a big role in the function of our government. Anytime we go to war, tax dollars are used. Anytime we defend our borders, tax dollars are used. I could go on with more examples, but I trust you already know these things. Let me take a moment to clarify. I don't think that whether or not you pay taxes should be the sole decider in whether or not you can vote. That said, I do think that if you can't vote, you shouldn't have mandatory taxes. Ideally, I think people should be able to specify where their money goes. Pooling money together for a common goal doesn't have to be a bad thing (for example, taxes). However, ignoring the rights of individuals (and where, or if they want their money to go) is not moral. Our tax system isn't like this, but ignoring the rights of individuals is still amoral. Currently the only way we can influence what our tax money is being used for is through voting (and campaigning). Minors cannot vote, but they are still subject to taxes. Their money is being used for wars they might not support, healthcare systems they want nothing to do with, etc and they have no voice in the matter. Explain to me how this is ethical. As for saying that people that are subject to laws should be allowed to vote; Minors are also subject to laws, but not to the extent that everyone else is. They are treated differently in a courtroom even if their crimes are the same as those of an adult (with some exceptions). A lot of aspects our culture seem to suggest that minors should not be held as accountable for their actions as adults are. I am for a system where anyone who is self-sufficient and willing to take full responsibility for their actions should have the same rights as anyone else. They have earned them. A child would obviously not qualify, logic tells us they aren't able to be self sufficient or responsible for their actions. You might argue that minors might not make the right decisions in their lives, but at least this way they are taking responsibility. If they are unwilling to take responsibility, they get fewer rights, regardless of age. Furthermore, in a rational world, anyone (regardless of age) who continues to make the wrong decisions in life will have to change or perish. This is the kind of environment I wish I had could have grown up in. Setting an arbitrary age to earn rights is detrimental to everyone. Responsible minors are being held back for no reason other than to make others more comfortable. Irresponsible minors are being enabled and then set out into the world no questions asked. I hope I have made my case in some way even if I am not arguing the point you were expecting me to. Look at the many ways minors are oppressed and ask yourself whether or not you can justify them. They range from the very important (voting, taxes, inability to enter contract) to the downright silly (not able to use certain equipment at work, getting longer breaks at work than everyone else) and then to the downright insulting (certain malls not allowing unaccompanied minors). The problems exist in our laws and in our culture. I've seen it from both sides very recently (a minor and an adult) and I can't justify it logically. Can you?
  17. Well, technically, minors do not have say because they don't vote on the elected officials. I don't think you understand me at all. I never said taxes were moral, I would be the last person to say that. What I am saying is this: If our tax system remains the way it is (which it is likely to do for a while), minors that pay taxes should either be able to vote or they should be exempt from taxes.
  18. No, that isn't collective in the least. I'm saying that minors who pay taxes deserve to have some say in how they are spent. I'm defending a minority (minors), and I am always for the rights of individuals (assuming their rights don't inhibit the rights of others). Part of the reason they don't have as many rights is bound to be because they can't vote the lawmakers into office. Someone had asked the connection between minors being taxed and not being able to vote, so I told them. I have no idea why you think that is collective.
  19. People voted into office determine how our tax dollars are spent. Simple. It's part of what fueled the revolutionary war.
  20. I posted a similar question a few months before I turned 18 as well. For a long time I had been wanting the same rights and responsibilities as adults (the good and the bad). I was in a bad home environment (parents that barely know the meaning of the word logic), yet it was expected that these people should be the ones to tell me how to run my life. I am 18 now and the only thing that has changed is the way society reacts to me. It seems to be the only way to counter this is to create a system that relies on a person's growth to give them rights instead of an arbitrary age (I would love to discuss ways to make this happen with like minded people). I think most people can agree that children are not as likely to make good decisions as adults. The problem is that not everyone becomes capable at 18. Some mature before, some after. It is easier to give one age of maturity to everyone, but that doesn't make it right. No one should be held back for arbitrary reasons. Furthermore, a lot of the restrictions placed on minors seem to discourage growth rather than foster it. Isn't it possible that bringing someone up for 18 years in an environment that says they are not totally responsible for their actions (parents or teachers often take the blame for mistakes) and doesn't allow them to make their own decisions creating people with very bad philosophies and then turning them out into the world? A few examples: Teenagers often work and pay taxes (and pay sales taxes even before that), but are not allowed to vote. Isn't this taxation without representation? Voting also affects their lives as much as those around them. Often the only jobs available for minors are in fast food or retail (that said, most retail places I've encountered also require you to be 18). Discrimination in the work place for race, religion, and that sort of thing are illegal for obvious reasons. Shouldn't the only type of discrimination be who is the best worker for the job and who isn't? It is true that a lot of the discrimination is for insurance reasons. For me, this only proves that the problem is deep into our philosophy and has to be changed everywhere. A teenager that lives in a bad environment has very few choices that allow them to leave. They can try emancipation, but this is difficult (and seems to only be allowed in cases of abuse and such, which isn't the only reason to leave). They can run away, but this wouldn't solve their problems (they would gave to live the life of a runaway, not the better life they are wanting). Shouldn't anyone who is capable of living on their own be allowed to do so? People often list the disasters that could happen if we let minors earn their own rights. This assumes that the only thing people want freedom for is to get drunk, have babies we can't take care of, and otherwise ruin their lives in someway. This isn't true for teenagers any more than it is for anyone else. I wanted freedom to be able to grow as a person and have no one else take the fall for my decisions. There would be some that would do these things, just like there are adults that do these things. They obviously don't deserve rights, regardless of age. You can't fix those people by trying to blame it on age, the problem is in their philosophy. Then there are those that want to be productive individuals. We do more harm to them by holding them back than most people realize.
  21. I can afford to consult an attorney (and yes, I'm aware if I couldn't I'd be in no position to live on my own), but I will be 18 in 2 months. More than likely by the time it got to court, I'd be 18 already. It would be a good idea to talk to one and know more about emancipation though. I would never substitute the opinion of complete strangers for my own, nor expect them to substitute mine for theirs. This post was supposed to be more about what to do instead of the system we currently have. Any ideas presented here are probably too late to gain me back the productivity I could have gained from being emancipated, but I want to live in a world in which others are free to earn their independence. I feel it would foster more responsible adults and add more value to the world. The focus on myself was more of an example that there are responsible minors out there who deserve to be independent.
  22. Agreed. As an adult, I will have to abide by many laws I am not comfortable with, and I feel it will be in part my responsibility to challenge those laws (in a civil manner of course). The main difference is that minors are not represented in law because they cannot vote. It is not as effective to make a credible argument if no one is listening. Furthermore, they are taxed without representation (yes, I paid in taxes this year, it was not all given back to me), just as the first settlers of this country were. If someone is going to withhold my rights from me, I do not want it to be based on arbitrary reasons. I expect rational arguments from the other side as well. I will gladly give my reasons. You're right, this was an error on my part. I was making the point that the system is arbitrary, and lots of adults are granted rights without being any more responsible than a 12 year old. There are also mature adults, as well as minors, and both deserve their freedom. To my understanding, emancipation is typically only granted in cases of neglect or abuse. Perhaps it isn't a bad system to appeal to the court for emancipation, but I believe it should include other cases as well.
  23. It is possible that any minor wanting to move out and be independent is not as mature and rational as they think, but I believe this a matter of simple cause and effect. The best way to gain the ability to support oneself is by having to do it, as with most abilities. I think in a lot of cases minors aren't as responsible as they should be because they're used to not having to be responsible. This is still in part their fault, but it's a bad system regardless. So I agree with you, having a test that involves a minor living on their own for a while would be ideal. Do you feel this should apply to anyone, regardless of age? Or just of minors that want to be emancipated?
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