Reproduction & the Mentally Disabled?

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Re: Reproduction & the Mentally Disabled?

Postby TheGrammarBolshevik » Fri Nov 20, 2009 5:18 am UTC

Well, the fact that it is already generally illegal to have sex with anyone who is mentally incapable of consent has come up before, and Hippo has also talked about reproduction as a right that you need to consciously, knowingly choose to exercise (not unlike the right to have sex, and I'm sure many other rights). But in these cases, the issue is not so much whether a person should be allowed to reproduce as whether other people should be allowed to make that person reproduce.

As for a standard of competence to have children, you still run up against the argument raised in Skinner v. Oklahoma — and you still haven't responded to it, other than to dismiss it simply because you can ("else why do we need free speech?").

Edit: Oh, excuse me. You said "question," but what you've really done is dismiss it out of hand. Because court decisions for some reason can't contain valid arguments. I really don't get it.
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Re: Reproduction & the Mentally Disabled?

Postby Kyrn » Fri Nov 20, 2009 5:29 am UTC

TheGrammarBolshevik wrote:Well, the fact that it is already generally illegal to have sex with anyone who is mentally incapable of consent has come up before, and Hippo has also talked about reproduction as a right that you need to consciously, knowingly choose to exercise (not unlike the right to have sex, and I'm sure many other rights). But in these cases, the issue is not so much whether a person should be allowed to reproduce as whether other people should be allowed to make that person reproduce.

As for a standard of competence to have children, you still run up against the argument raised in Skinner v. Oklahoma — and you still haven't responded to it, other than to dismiss it simply because you can ("else why do we need free speech?").

Edit: Oh, excuse me. You said "question," but what you've really done is dismiss it out of hand. Because court decisions for some reason can't contain valid arguments. I really don't get it.


1) I was starting a new argument, in which I noted a situation where human rights are taken away (Ok, so I did it in a backwards manner, which I apologize. But still, the inverse should apply; If a person is an immediate threat to others or is unable to meet the minimum standards for caring for oneself, it is constitutionally acceptable to confine the person for treatment.), and asking if the citera for the rights should be more stringent in the case of reproduction. If I were to take your previous argument raised in Skinner v. Oklahoma directly, it would mean that while you confine a person due to being unable to care for one-self, you allow them to reproduce. I do not think this is what you meant, though clarifications would be appreciated.
2) I didn't question because I said questioning it is deserving of a new topic. Hence I ended that argument.
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Re: Reproduction & the Mentally Disabled?

Postby TheGrammarBolshevik » Fri Nov 20, 2009 5:57 am UTC

Kyrn wrote:1) I was starting a new argument, in which I noted a situation where human rights are taken away (Ok, so I did it in a backwards manner, which I apologize. But still, the inverse should apply; If a person is an immediate threat to others or is unable to meet the minimum standards for caring for oneself, it is constitutionally acceptable to confine the person for treatment.), and asking if the citera for the rights should be more stringent in the case of reproduction. If I were to take your previous argument raised in Skinner v. Oklahoma directly, it would mean that while you confine a person due to being unable to care for one-self, you allow them to reproduce. I do not think this is what you meant, though clarifications would be appreciated.

Pragmatically speaking, a person who is involuntarily committed would also, I think, generally be deemed incapable of consenting, and the power structure of a psychiatric hospital (which is notoriously prone to abuse) puts even more doubt on the possibility of consent. If a person is mentally incapable of caring for hirself, then I'd be much more concerned with protecting hir from reproduction without hir consent than with protecting other people from the results of such reproduction.

Kyrn wrote:2) I didn't question because I said questioning it is deserving of a new topic. Hence I ended that argument.

Deciding not to answer an argument doesn't really address it, though.
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Re: Reproduction & the Mentally Disabled?

Postby Kyrn » Fri Nov 20, 2009 9:50 am UTC

TheGrammarBolshevik wrote:Pragmatically speaking, a person who is involuntarily committed would also, I think, generally be deemed incapable of consenting, and the power structure of a psychiatric hospital (which is notoriously prone to abuse) puts even more doubt on the possibility of consent. If a person is mentally incapable of caring for hirself, then I'd be much more concerned with protecting hir from reproduction without hir consent than with protecting other people from the results of such reproduction.

So we both agree on the baseline that if a person is incapable of caring for oneself, the decision of reproduction should not be allowed. Following such, there should be a certain quota above such, since I assume that even if a person can care for oneself, does not necessarily mean that they can manage to care for another.

Kyrn wrote:2) I didn't question because I said questioning it is deserving of a new topic. Hence I ended that argument.

Deciding not to answer an argument doesn't really address it, though.


Let's just say that assuming that reproductive rights would apply for the genetically disadvantaged, my proposal doesn't stand, and leave it at that.
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Re: Reproduction & the Mentally Disabled?

Postby TheGrammarBolshevik » Fri Nov 20, 2009 2:28 pm UTC

Kyrn wrote:So we both agree on the baseline that if a person is incapable of caring for oneself, the decision of reproduction should not be allowed.

No. Quit conflating a person's decision to reproduce and another person's decision to make that person reproduce.
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Re: Reproduction & the Mentally Disabled?

Postby gmalivuk » Fri Nov 20, 2009 4:27 pm UTC

Kyrn wrote:Let's just say that assuming that reproductive rights would apply for the genetically disadvantaged, my proposal doesn't stand, and leave it at that.

No, your proposal doesn't stand if reproductive rights exist at all.
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Re: Reproduction & the Mentally Disabled?

Postby EduardoLeon » Fri Nov 20, 2009 6:32 pm UTC

We should strive to let those who are useful for society reproduce and prevent those who aren't to do so. If the mentally disabled want to experience sexual pleasure, they can always masturbate achieve it by other means, but reproduction is a major no-no in their case.
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Re: Reproduction & the Mentally Disabled?

Postby gmalivuk » Fri Nov 20, 2009 7:29 pm UTC

Thank you for your completely unhelpful and poorly thought-out post.

Who decides who is "useful" to society?
Who decides what it even means to be useful to society?
How do you prevent abuse of this decision making process?

And that's all ignoring the fact that reproduction is part of the right to bodily autonomy to begin with. It's not a matter of sexual pleasure, it's a matter of reproduction. That's why the thread is about reproduction and the mentally disabled.
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Re: Reproduction & the Mentally Disabled?

Postby EduardoLeon » Fri Nov 20, 2009 7:44 pm UTC

gmalivuk wrote:Who decides who is "useful" to society?
Who decides what it even means to be useful to society?
How do you prevent abuse of this decision making process?

Nobody knows who will turn up being useful, but it can be estimated using common sense. Since the ultimate purpose of society is perpetuating itself, it's better to lose a single useful member than not eliminating lots of non-useful members. This is why I support the death penalty and effective discrimination against groups of people that account for the greatest part of the criminal population.

But, back to the topic, I again state that I don't support that mentally disabled people reproduce freely. The right to reproduce belongs to the society, not a single individual, and it's society which should decide who reproduces and who doesn't.
Last edited by EduardoLeon on Fri Nov 20, 2009 7:49 pm UTC, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Reproduction & the Mentally Disabled?

Postby TheGrammarBolshevik » Fri Nov 20, 2009 7:48 pm UTC

:shock:

I'm confused, then. You say that the "purpose" of society is to perpetuate itself (and how do you know that it has a purpose?), yet you want to prevent people from procreating? Do you have any evidence that procreation by any group of people could be reasonably expected to end society?

If your interest is in perpetuating society, isn't repealing the right to procreation a step in the wrong direction?
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Re: Reproduction & the Mentally Disabled?

Postby EduardoLeon » Fri Nov 20, 2009 7:50 pm UTC

TheGrammarBolshevik wrote:If your interest is in perpetuating society, isn't repealing the right to procreation a step in the wrong direction?

Wrong. Preventing the reproduction of non-useful people statistically saves lives and thus helps society in its goal of self-perpetuation.
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Re: Reproduction & the Mentally Disabled?

Postby TheGrammarBolshevik » Fri Nov 20, 2009 7:52 pm UTC

EduardoLeon wrote:Wrong. Preventing the reproduction of non-useful people statistically saves lives and thus helps society in its goal of self-perpetuation.

Cite this — both the claim that it saves lives and the claim that this is necessary for self-perpetuation. And quit relying on the classification of "useful" if you refuse to define it.
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Re: Reproduction & the Mentally Disabled?

Postby gmalivuk » Fri Nov 20, 2009 7:53 pm UTC

EduardoLeon wrote:
TheGrammarBolshevik wrote:If your interest is in perpetuating society, isn't repealing the right to procreation a step in the wrong direction?

Wrong. Preventing the reproduction of non-useful people statistically saves lives

[citation needed]

Also, prove to me that society has a goal in the first place. And then prove to me that this goal is self-perpetuation. And *then* provide me with that citation about how "non-useful" people cause death. Unless, of course, that's just how you define non-useful. In which case, if you're advocating the death penalty, *you* are a non-useful person and should not be allowed to reproduce.

I'm pretty okay with that, actually...
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Re: Reproduction & the Mentally Disabled?

Postby EduardoLeon » Fri Nov 20, 2009 7:56 pm UTC

gmalivuk wrote:Also, prove to me that society has a goal in the first place. And then prove to me that this goal is self-perpetuation. And *then* provide me with that citation about how "non-useful" people cause death. Unless, of course, that's just how you define non-useful. In which case, if you're advocating the death penalty, *you* are a non-useful person and should not be allowed to reproduce.

I'm pretty okay with that, actually...

Useful people create economic wealth. A society's only way to self-perpetuate is prevent non-useful people to do what they usually do: destroy economic wealth and put useful people in risky situations, which statistically destroys lives as well. (If, by these definitions, a person is considered both useful and non-useful, the non-useful category prevails.)

But, again, let's discuss why the mentally disabled should and should not reproduce. Let's not go off topic.

This has been underway for 4 pages -- pages that you clearly haven't bothered to read. Your further participation here is unwelcome.

Please be sure to read the SB section rules at your earliest convenience.

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Re: Reproduction & the Mentally Disabled?

Postby Kyrn » Sat Nov 21, 2009 12:25 am UTC

TheGrammarBolshevik wrote:
Kyrn wrote:So we both agree on the baseline that if a person is incapable of caring for oneself, the decision of reproduction should not be allowed.

No. Quit conflating a person's decision to reproduce and another person's decision to make that person reproduce.


Ok, then I'll need to push this point further. When a person is incapable of caring for one-self or making safe decisions, it does not necessarily mean that he is unable to make decisions of his own free will (in this case, meaning uninfluenced by others). Take for instance, someone who is extremely bi-polar and suicidal during maniac periods. Nothing of this disability makes this person easily influenced by others, yet he is in clear danger when he is in a maniac period. Do you agree with this, or otherwise?

gmalivuk wrote:Thank you for your completely unhelpful and poorly thought-out post.

Who decides who is "useful" to society?
Who decides what it even means to be useful to society?
How do you prevent abuse of this decision making process?

And that's all ignoring the fact that reproduction is part of the right to bodily autonomy to begin with. It's not a matter of sexual pleasure, it's a matter of reproduction. That's why the thread is about reproduction and the mentally disabled.


The government and justice system decides who is useful to society, legislation decides what it means to be useful (or harmful) to society, abuse is prevented by implementing the legislative and judical system, along with the whole elective process.

gmalivuk wrote:[citation needed]

Also, prove to me that society has a goal in the first place. And then prove to me that this goal is self-perpetuation. And *then* provide me with that citation about how "non-useful" people cause death. Unless, of course, that's just how you define non-useful. In which case, if you're advocating the death penalty, *you* are a non-useful person and should not be allowed to reproduce.

I'm pretty okay with that, actually...


Let's look at this in the PoV of the government then. The objective of the government, other than to serve the wills of the people, is also to improve the country (philosophical, I know. But I would like to believe it is true, since the alternative is somewhat negative). The question then, would be whether the sacrifice of human rights of a few would benifit the country as a whole, just as how the legislative system is a system deciding on whether human rights should be removed, and how much. (and indirectly, the government influences the legislative system, which is the whole point here)
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Re: Reproduction & the Mentally Disabled?

Postby The Great Hippo » Sat Nov 21, 2009 12:30 am UTC

Kyrn wrote:The government and justice system decides who is useful to society, legislation decides what it means to be useful (or harmful) to society, abuse is prevented by implementing the legislative and judical system, along with the whole elective process.
Right. And we as a country, we as a people, we as a mother-fucking bad ass posse have determined that the government isn't all cracked up to perform that task, so we set aside a list of fundamental human rights which the government ain't allowed to mess with.
Kyrn wrote:Let's look at this in the PoV of the government then. The objective of the government, other than to serve the wills of the people, is also to improve the country (philosophical, I know. But I would like to believe it is true, since the alternative is somewhat negative). The question then, would be whether the sacrifice of human rights of a few would benifit the country as a whole, just as how the legislative system is a system deciding on whether human rights should be removed, and how much. (and indirectly, the government influences the legislative system, which is the whole point here)
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Clarence Darrow, 'The Eugenics Cult' wrote:We have neither facts nor theories to give us any evidence based on biology or any other branch of science as to how we could breed intelligence, happiness, or anything else that would improve the race. We have no idea of the meaning of the word “improvement.” We can imagine no human organization we could trust with the job, even if eugenists [sic] knew what should be done and the proper way to do it.

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Re: Reproduction & the Mentally Disabled?

Postby Kyrn » Sat Nov 21, 2009 2:11 am UTC

The Great Hippo wrote:
Kyrn wrote:The government and justice system decides who is useful to society, legislation decides what it means to be useful (or harmful) to society, abuse is prevented by implementing the legislative and judical system, along with the whole elective process.
Right. And we as a country, we as a people, we as a mother-fucking bad ass posse have determined that the government isn't all cracked up to perform that task, so we set aside a list of fundamental human rights which the government ain't allowed to mess with.

Which is entirely untrue. Let me remind you now the legal system performs it's duties, after judgement is decided. Fines takes away possession of property. Jail terms takes away personal freedoms. For those with death penalties, those also takes away the right to life.

Then, on how judgement is decided, you've speeding rules, which restrict freedom of action, custody rules, which decides parental rights, anti-competitive rules, which restricts freedom of action on a larger scale, and etc.

Next, you've to realise that human rights, are in itself enforced by the government. Without the government, all your freedoms break down; since there is nothing left to prevent someone else from stepping on your own rights.

Finally, the simple question on how these rights were decided to begin with. For all intents and purposes, rights are synonymous with legislation (or in some cases, the bill of rights, which in itself is related to legislation still). Which is also why legislation bodies are seperate from governmental bodies, so even if the government were to adjust these legislation, they still can be overruled via the judical system.
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Re: Reproduction & the Mentally Disabled?

Postby TheGrammarBolshevik » Sat Nov 21, 2009 2:39 am UTC

*sigh*

Fundamental rights¹, under my country's government at least, may be infringed, but only if the infringement is narrowly tailored to a compelling government interest. "The greater good of society" is not compelling.

And anyway, weren't you just saying that you trust the government and courts to decide who can have what rights? Everyone understands this, and Hippo wasn't contradicting it, but your list just gives examples of courts' decisions to limit those rights; it doesn't show that they can or should restrict this particular right in this particular case. And if you say that the courts are the ones to decide which rights are protected, then you should have a pretty good reason for contradicting them.

¹ Including the right to procreate.
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Re: Reproduction & the Mentally Disabled?

Postby mmmcannibalism » Sat Nov 21, 2009 3:12 am UTC

Has the right to procreate ever actually been cited in a court case as a fundamental right?(Its generally understood but I'm curious)
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Re: Reproduction & the Mentally Disabled?

Postby The Great Hippo » Sat Nov 21, 2009 3:26 am UTC

Kyrn wrote:Which is entirely untrue. Let me remind you now the legal system performs it's duties, after judgement is decided. Fines takes away possession of property. Jail terms takes away personal freedoms. For those with death penalties, those also takes away the right to life.
Those are violations of one person's rights to protect the rights of others. There is a difference between depriving someone of their right to something, and violating their right to something to protect someone else's rights.

Here's how fundamental rights work: You have a fundamental right to life. I cannot deprive you of this right ("I've decided you no longer have the right to life. I can kill you whenever I want"), but I can violate it ("I'm going to kill you RIGHT NOW...") only if I am doing so in the interest of protecting other people's rights ("...because if I don't, someone else will die.").

In order to deprive people of their right to physical autonomy--to sterilize them without their consent--you need to demonstrate that doing so is necessary to protect someone else's rights. Eugenicists have never been able to accomplish this task.
mmmcannibalism wrote:Has the right to procreate ever actually been cited in a court case as a fundamental right?(Its generally understood but I'm curious)
I've always parsed it under the right of physical autonomy (the right to decide what goes in and out of my body--you can't give me surgery unless I want it, etc). I don't know of a particular court case where procreation has been upheld, but I'm sure you'd find something among the annuals of America's shameful sterilization campaigns--ranging from the early 20th century up until the 60s.

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Re: Reproduction & the Mentally Disabled?

Postby Kyrn » Sat Nov 21, 2009 3:31 am UTC

TheGrammarBolshevik wrote:*sigh*

Fundamental rights¹, under my country's government at least, may be infringed, but only if the infringement is narrowly tailored to a compelling government interest. "The greater good of society" is not compelling.

And anyway, weren't you just saying that you trust the government and courts to decide who can have what rights? Everyone understands this, and Hippo wasn't contradicting it, but your list just gives examples of courts' decisions to limit those rights; it doesn't show that they can or should restrict this particular right in this particular case. And if you say that the courts are the ones to decide which rights are protected, then you should have a pretty good reason for contradicting them.

¹ Including the right to procreate.


Well, that's the argument here then. Is it a compelling government interest? As opposed to "is it a violation of human rights", which has been the main contention thus far.

In this case, I have specifically worded for a person who has a mental disability, who technically has the resources to care for one self, but may not have the resources to care for one additional. Current legislation only restricts the removal of rights when one cannot care for oneself or is in clear risk of harming oneself and/or others. My argument is that even if one is proven to care for oneself, doesn't mean that one should be allowed to reproduce, especially if they are only able to maintain an income/lifestyle suitable for single sustanence.
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Re: Reproduction & the Mentally Disabled?

Postby TheGrammarBolshevik » Sat Nov 21, 2009 3:42 am UTC

mmmcannibalism wrote:Has the right to procreate ever actually been cited in a court case as a fundamental right?(Its generally understood but I'm curious)

Skinner v. State of Oklahoma, ex rel. Williamson, 316 US 535 (1942), at 541, to go chapter and verse. I quoted the relevant passage somewhere on the last page.

Kyrn wrote:Well, that's the argument here then. Is it a compelling government interest? As opposed to "is it a violation of human rights", which has been the main contention thus far.

If that's the argument, would you care to make one? The standard of "compelling," again, although it has not been brightly defined, is clearly higher than a general interest in the public good. You need something a little closer to the end-of-society scenario that EduardoLeon was hand-waving about.
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Re: Reproduction & the Mentally Disabled?

Postby The Great Hippo » Sat Nov 21, 2009 3:44 am UTC

Kyrn wrote:My argument is that even if one is proven to care for oneself, doesn't mean that one should be allowed to reproduce, especially if they are only able to maintain an income/lifestyle suitable for single sustanence.
So reproduction rights are contingent on your ability to care for your children? I'm just trying to get you to understand the nature of such a policy--you describe mental illness as the cause, but if your primary criteria is that the government determines you are incapable of caring for a child, mental illness becomes a smoke-screen--what it sounds like you're advocating is birth-licenses (you cannot reproduce until you prove that you are capable and willing to care for a child).

There are a lot of reasons I find such a policy to be bad, but one of the simplest is because it's one of those 'looks-good-on-paper' policies--like contractual slavery. Contractual slavery seemed fair and reasonable on paper, but the moment you started involving people, the results were often horrifying (and eventually lead to actual slavery).

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Re: Reproduction & the Mentally Disabled?

Postby Kyrn » Sat Nov 21, 2009 4:09 am UTC

TheGrammarBolshevik wrote:
Kyrn wrote:Well, that's the argument here then. Is it a compelling government interest? As opposed to "is it a violation of human rights", which has been the main contention thus far.

If that's the argument, would you care to make one? The standard of "compelling," again, although it has not been brightly defined, is clearly higher than a general interest in the public good. You need something a little closer to the end-of-society scenario that EduardoLeon was hand-waving about.


I don't recall domestic disputes to be an "end-of-society" scenario, yet it is a cause for removal of custody. So certainly, you're taking the argument much too far to the other extreme.

The Great Hippo wrote:
Kyrn wrote:My argument is that even if one is proven to care for oneself, doesn't mean that one should be allowed to reproduce, especially if they are only able to maintain an income/lifestyle suitable for single sustanence.
So reproduction rights are contingent on your ability to care for your children? I'm just trying to get you to understand the nature of such a policy--you describe mental illness as the cause, but if your primary criteria is that the government determines you are incapable of caring for a child, mental illness becomes a smoke-screen--what it sounds like you're advocating is birth-licenses (you cannot reproduce until you prove that you are capable and willing to care for a child).

There are a lot of reasons I find such a policy to be bad, but one of the simplest is because it's one of those 'looks-good-on-paper' policies--like contractual slavery. Contractual slavery seemed fair and reasonable on paper, but the moment you started involving people, the results were often horrifying (and eventually lead to actual slavery).


Part of the issue is that because of the "mental disorder" nature of this case, it is entirely plausible that a child from a person who is borderline capable of caring for one-self, may still pose a threat to a child, especially since custody rights deems the person having certain rights over the child as well. It is in the same vein as the whole removal of rights from a person who is unable to care for one-self or is a threat to oneself/others, but actging in a pro-active manner; instead of waiting for the child to be born then taking custody from the parent who cannot care for such, we deny the right to have the child to begin with.

Basically, if a person would be deemed unsuitable for adoption (in which mental disabilities is a citera), they should also be deemed unsuitable for reproduction.
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Re: Reproduction & the Mentally Disabled?

Postby The Great Hippo » Sat Nov 21, 2009 4:50 am UTC

Kyrn wrote:Part of the issue is that because of the "mental disorder" nature of this case, it is entirely plausible that a child from a person who is borderline capable of caring for one-self, may still pose a threat to a child, especially since custody rights deems the person having certain rights over the child as well. It is in the same vein as the whole removal of rights from a person who is unable to care for one-self or is a threat to oneself/others, but actging in a pro-active manner; instead of waiting for the child to be born then taking custody from the parent who cannot care for such, we deny the right to have the child to begin with.

Basically, if a person would be deemed unsuitable for adoption (in which mental disabilities is a citera), they should also be deemed unsuitable for reproduction.
Well, I mean, that sounds like we'd be sterilizing people for the sake of bureaucratic efficiency--rather than to protect someone else's rights.

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Re: Reproduction & the Mentally Disabled?

Postby TheGrammarBolshevik » Sat Nov 21, 2009 5:22 am UTC

Kyrn wrote:I don't recall domestic disputes to be an "end-of-society" scenario, yet it is a cause for removal of custody. So certainly, you're taking the argument much too far to the other extreme.

I don't think that custody of one's children is a recognized fundamental right, and but this does point to a major problem for a eugenics program to pass strict scrutiny: the most pressing interest of the state here seems to be protection of the potential child, but it can already do so through its normal procedures for taking custody of a child. Even with compelling government interest, then, a eugenics program still fails the "least restrictive means" prong of strict scrutiny.
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Re: Reproduction & the Mentally Disabled?

Postby Kyrn » Sat Nov 21, 2009 5:28 am UTC

The Great Hippo wrote:
Kyrn wrote:Part of the issue is that because of the "mental disorder" nature of this case, it is entirely plausible that a child from a person who is borderline capable of caring for one-self, may still pose a threat to a child, especially since custody rights deems the person having certain rights over the child as well. It is in the same vein as the whole removal of rights from a person who is unable to care for one-self or is a threat to oneself/others, but actging in a pro-active manner; instead of waiting for the child to be born then taking custody from the parent who cannot care for such, we deny the right to have the child to begin with.

Basically, if a person would be deemed unsuitable for adoption (in which mental disabilities is a citera), they should also be deemed unsuitable for reproduction.
Well, I mean, that sounds like we'd be sterilizing people for the sake of bureaucratic efficiency--rather than to protect someone else's rights.


If you look on the short term, yes. However, bureaucratic efficiency does also mean better welfare for those who requires such, not to mention the reduction of children without a proper family structure, and other long term benefits. For the removal of rights from a group of people who wouldn't be able to use those rights in a responsible and/or acceptable manner. In the same vein, copyright legislation doesn't protect human rights (removing rights to copy instead) instead), but is implemented for the sake of benifitting society.

TheGrammarBolshevik wrote:I don't think that custody of one's children is a recognized fundamental right, and but this does point to a major problem for a eugenics program to pass strict scrutiny: the most pressing interest of the state here seems to be protection of the potential child, but it can already do so through its normal procedures for taking custody of a child. Even with compelling government interest, then, a eugenics program still fails the "least restrictive means" prong of strict scrutiny.


The issue with "least restrictive" is that it doesn't necessarily benefit society. It's less of protecting the child (since an unborn child is not exactly protecting one) and more of reduction of social issues. When a child is born without suitable parents it is already too late; it's an additional burden on society which did not request for the extra burden.

[EDIT]Also for note; eugenics doesn't necessarily have to play a part. Due to the way this should be implemented, it would be far simpler to impose legislation to make reproduction illegal for those determined to be unsuitable for parenthood on diagnosis of mental disorders. It is admittedly not suitable to actually force abortion since that would be in direct harm to the patent, but it would necessarily call for another reconsideration of the mental illnesss diagnosis, since a person who is unable to take proper measures to prevent reproduction while directly informed of such an issue, is likely to be unable to take proper measures to stay within other legislations (aka unable to care for oneself).[/EDIT]
Last edited by Kyrn on Sat Nov 21, 2009 5:39 am UTC, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Reproduction & the Mentally Disabled?

Postby TheGrammarBolshevik » Sat Nov 21, 2009 5:38 am UTC

Too bad. "Benefiting society" isn't a compelling state interest. And critiquing strict scrutiny is pretty silly if you think the courts should be the ones to administer standards on usefulness, prevent abuse, &c.
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Re: Reproduction & the Mentally Disabled?

Postby Kyrn » Sat Nov 21, 2009 5:40 am UTC

TheGrammarBolshevik wrote:Too bad. "Benefiting society" isn't a compelling state interest. And critiquing strict scrutiny is pretty silly if you think the courts should be the ones to administer standards on usefulness, prevent abuse, &c.


Then explain copyright and patent legislation, where the right for the public to copy is removed from the public, in order to promote innovation/creativity, and thus benefit society. Beneffiting society is a perfectly reasonable reason for legislations.
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Re: Reproduction & the Mentally Disabled?

Postby TheGrammarBolshevik » Sat Nov 21, 2009 5:48 am UTC

...Seriously?

The Goddammed Constitution wrote:The Congress shall have power ... To promote the Progress of Science and useful Arts, by securing for limited Times to Authors and Inventors the exclusive Right to their respective Writings and Discoveries

I also note that your term "reasonable reason for legislations" moves the goalposts from strict scrutiny to rational basis review. The "benefitting society" justification may apply to legislation in general, but it is insufficient for laws that restrict fundamental rights.
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Re: Reproduction & the Mentally Disabled?

Postby Kyrn » Sat Nov 21, 2009 6:06 am UTC

TheGrammarBolshevik wrote:...Seriously?

The Goddammed Constitution wrote:The Congress shall have power ... To promote the Progress of Science and useful Arts, by securing for limited Times to Authors and Inventors the exclusive Right to their respective Writings and Discoveries

I also note that your term "reasonable reason for legislations" moves the goalposts from strict scrutiny to rational basis review. The "benefitting society" justification may apply to legislation in general, but it is insufficient for laws that restrict fundamental rights.


A note: the right to prevent others from copying was never a human/fundamental right. The right to do as I want with my property (including making an imitation of another item) is a human/fundamental right. The grant for the right to prevent the others from copying, is the grant of the right to restrict the right of others.

More examples: Anti-competitive legislation restricts the right for a company to use their dominance in one line of busniess to gain an advantage in another line of business. The right restricted is the right to do as (the company) wants with their own resources.

[EDIT]Or another way to look at it, if you claim the above to be a natural right, why is there a limited time factor involved? The constitution directly removes the copyright from the authors and inventors after a limited time, therefore removing their rights. And the rationale is again, to benefit society by ensuring said writings and discoveries re-enter society.[/EDIT]
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Re: Reproduction & the Mentally Disabled?

Postby TheGrammarBolshevik » Sat Nov 21, 2009 1:43 pm UTC

Kyrn wrote:[EDIT]Or another way to look at it, if you claim the above to be a natural right, why is there a limited time factor involved? The constitution directly removes the copyright from the authors and inventors after a limited time, therefore removing their rights. And the rationale is again, to benefit society by ensuring said writings and discoveries re-enter society.[/EDIT]

Kyrn wrote:A note: the right to prevent others from copying was never a human/fundamental right.

The right to do whatever you want with your property was also never a fundamental right (which is not the same as a human right). This sophistry is tiresome. Strict scrutiny is not a new concept, and you are not going to overturn it just by spouting off every legal restriction you can name.
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Re: Reproduction & the Mentally Disabled?

Postby The Great Hippo » Sat Nov 21, 2009 2:44 pm UTC

Kyrn wrote:If you look on the short term, yes. However, bureaucratic efficiency does also mean better welfare for those who requires such, not to mention the reduction of children without a proper family structure, and other long term benefits. For the removal of rights from a group of people who wouldn't be able to use those rights in a responsible and/or acceptable manner. In the same vein, copyright legislation doesn't protect human rights (removing rights to copy instead) instead), but is implemented for the sake of benifitting society.
As TGB pointed out, beneficial results are not sufficient to violate rights--rather, you may violate fundamental rights only when doing so protects other fundamental rights. Copyright law is neither a violation of fundamental rights nor an attempt to protect fundamental rights (although an argument could be made that it is--a protection of the fundamental right of property--but I think that property is a questionable fundamental right).
Kyrn wrote:[EDIT]Also for note; eugenics doesn't necessarily have to play a part. Due to the way this should be implemented, it would be far simpler to impose legislation to make reproduction illegal for those determined to be unsuitable for parenthood on diagnosis of mental disorders. It is admittedly not suitable to actually force abortion since that would be in direct harm to the patent, but it would necessarily call for another reconsideration of the mental illnesss diagnosis, since a person who is unable to take proper measures to prevent reproduction while directly informed of such an issue, is likely to be unable to take proper measures to stay within other legislations (aka unable to care for oneself).[/EDIT]
It might not be clearly eugenics, but it's a policy that effectively looks the same--we make decisions concerning who can and can't breed based on their suitability. The fact that you're not going to be performing abortions isn't particular relevant; we can imagine a eugenics policy that doesn't include abortions.

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Re: Reproduction & the Mentally Disabled?

Postby TheGrammarBolshevik » Sat Nov 21, 2009 2:50 pm UTC

Given the history of compulsory sterilization in America, restricting the definitions eugenics to forced abortions would be profoundly silly.
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Re: Reproduction & the Mentally Disabled?

Postby Kyrn » Sat Nov 21, 2009 11:14 pm UTC

TheGrammarBolshevik wrote:
Kyrn wrote:[EDIT]Or another way to look at it, if you claim the above to be a natural right, why is there a limited time factor involved? The constitution directly removes the copyright from the authors and inventors after a limited time, therefore removing their rights. And the rationale is again, to benefit society by ensuring said writings and discoveries re-enter society.[/EDIT]

Kyrn wrote:A note: the right to prevent others from copying was never a human/fundamental right.

The right to do whatever you want with your property was also never a fundamental right (which is not the same as a human right). This sophistry is tiresome. Strict scrutiny is not a new concept, and you are not going to overturn it just by spouting off every legal restriction you can name.


The universal declaration of human rights, article 17:
1. Everyone has the right to own property alone as well as in association with others.
2. No one shall be arbitrarily deprived of his property.

Definition of property:
A title, or a right of ownership, is associated with property that establishes the relation between the goods/services and other persons, assuring the owner the right to dispense with the property in a manner he or she sees fit.

Admittedly from Wikipedia, but feel free to contest this.

[EDIT] I can't find anywhere which states a concrete referenced list of fundamental rights, but Wikipedia claims that the "Right to property" is a generally recognized fundamental right. [/EDIT]
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Re: Reproduction & the Mentally Disabled?

Postby TheGrammarBolshevik » Sat Nov 21, 2009 11:31 pm UTC

The right to property does not indicate the right to do whatever you want with your property — for example, the right to point a gun that you own at another person and shoot it, or the right to refuse to pay taxes with your own money. Surely you realize that the courts do not recognize it as such, so you still aren't anywhere near a concrete attack on strict scrutiny.
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Re: Reproduction & the Mentally Disabled?

Postby Kyrn » Sat Nov 21, 2009 11:38 pm UTC

TheGrammarBolshevik wrote:The right to property does not indicate the right to do whatever you want with your property — for example, the right to point a gun that you own at another person and shoot it, or the right to refuse to pay taxes with your own money. Surely you realize that the courts do not recognize it as such, so you still aren't anywhere near a concrete attack on strict scrutiny.


Partially precisely the point. Human/fundamental rights CAN be revoked on the basis of benifitting society. In the case of copyrights, the inventor/author doesn't even need to be involved; A person cannot make a backup and pass it to a friend.
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Re: Reproduction & the Mentally Disabled?

Postby TheGrammarBolshevik » Sat Nov 21, 2009 11:44 pm UTC

Jesus Christ.

The right you are talking about is not recognized as fundamental. If you are trying to find an inconsistency in strict scrutiny, it doesn't look like you're even headed in the right direction. If you're trying to do anything else, then you can't expect the courts to administer a law which we have every reason to suspect would be found unconstitutional.
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Re: Reproduction & the Mentally Disabled?

Postby Kyrn » Sun Nov 22, 2009 12:13 am UTC

TheGrammarBolshevik wrote:Jesus Christ.

The right you are talking about is not recognized as fundamental. If you are trying to find an inconsistency in strict scrutiny, it doesn't look like you're even headed in the right direction. If you're trying to do anything else, then you can't expect the courts to administer a law which we have every reason to suspect would be found unconstitutional.


Ok, let me put it in another way, Is copyright, a legislation within the Constitution, considered a fundamental right? If it is one, how can fair use restrict those rights? If it is not, how do you define a fundamental right?
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Re: Reproduction & the Mentally Disabled?

Postby Azrael » Sun Nov 22, 2009 12:15 am UTC

Copyrighting is not in the constitution, nor the Bill or Rights. Nor any other international declaration of human rights. So ... no, it's not a right, despite having the word in the name.

Kyrn wrote:Human/fundamental rights CAN be revoked on the basis of benifitting society.
No, they can't be revoked. They can/are/will be violated frequently, but they can't be revoked. That's the entire point of the delineation between human rights and other rights.


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