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I may be born with an innate sense that I need to steal things. That is part of the challenge of life. However — a study of biology and embryology clearly identifies a range of intersex conditions! You see I am a biologist who reads medical text books and biological studies, rather than bronze age-guesswork wearing a god-badge! Could I recommend some study of the actual subject at a top international medical reference site! Ambiguous genitalia is a birth defect where the outer genitals do not have the typical appearance of either a boy or a girl. The male and female reproductive organs and genitals both come from the same tissue in the fetus.

This makes it difficult to easily identify the infant as male or female. The extent of the ambiguity varies. In very rare instances, the physical appearance may be fully developed as the opposite of the genetic sex. For example, a genetic male may have developed the appearance of a normal female. Alan 75 — If you had a disabled child who was a wheelchair user, would you also refuse their fellow wheelchair using partner admission? I will focus on two issues: the morality of murder and the issue of homosexuality.

Re murder, rather than addressing my crystal clear question: Does an atheist believe John can kill Steve simply because John feels like it, and if not, why not,. First of all, people who are not psychopaths do not casually kill people anyway. Usually they need a strong motive! A secular humanist view, is that societies need to establish laws and manage their own moral codes of conduct, based on equality of rights, mutual co-operation, and altruism.

Perhaps you could explain the various accounts of acclaimed killings and genocides against rival states, rival tribes, and rival religions. Deuteronomy I tried to give a vague meaningless question some context. We are fundamentally different on this point, you and I. And, in my system of morals, you are extraordinarily morally corrupt on this point.

More importantly, I also find your other answers deeply, deeply immoral. It makes me happy and I have a right to it. And, that is precisely where your beliefs hurt others. And my sentiment of not judging others is clearly stated in your own Holy books and YOU choose to flout them…. Our sages ask, when are you allowed to judge another person? The answer: Never. The explanation given is as follows: Who says your blood is redder than his?

Talmud — Sanhedrin 74a. You have a tradition that came purely from men inventing stuff to suit themselves and ascribing it to an imaginary god, and I mean men in the male sense because almost exclusively women had little say in the origins of the ancient religions which is why they are so discriminated against in them.

End of.

You are just a product of your particular childhood brainwashing. However childhood brainwashing is very hard to overcome. We understand that and are saddened by it. Hi Avi. I am one of the secular Jews Alan mentioned and a semi regular contributor here. They have the patience of Job if that makes you more comfortable. You have also conducted yourself this way, just with a message we cannot rationally appreciate. I use the word rationally on purpose. I will remind you again of where you are choosing to post. You need to understand that we are as incapable of believing in your sky god as you are in his absence.

But let me be clear on this point: we are NOT incapable of considering it rationally however. That seems anathema to your dogma. We would never have evolved without an innate morality. This much is clear. I love that. And I shall steal that with attribution with your permission. Love that. I remember Richard debating with some bat shit crazy blonde American woman years ago who spoke in the quietest calmest voice that nothing could upset but everything that came out of her mouth was pure poison.

Also Ted Haggard raging against gays whilst paying male prostitutes for sex and calling the police against Richard because he discussed evolution he accused me of being a monkey. It has nothing, however, to do with homosexual conduct! It was not my intent to seek out a secular site just to post! However, I will note that it seems you prefer insularity, that is, you prefer not to engage in discussion with those who disagree with you.

I have no such issue, I am much more open-minded. We all agree that societies need to establish laws. So we agree, we need laws. The laws against, say, murder, are meant so that society is not destroyed. But this has nothing to do with morality! What makes you think these are positive values?

Indeed, what makes you think there are values at all? It is this issue that particularly interests me. By the way, this has nothing to do with the original posted article. Obviously you would or should agree that a self-managing group such as Orthodox Jews can have its own rules, as long as it is not forcing others to keep those rules.

I would fully agree with that notion. I await your response. I would say that I am absolutely prohibited from within! And as I have never been religions and come from a family of non-religious people and have had very little contact with orthodox Jews and no very little about Judaism.

I can only assume that that feeling of murder and rape and stealing, and hurting people being wrong does not, cannot come from any God. God to me and to many compassionate and humane agnostics and atheists is simply Nothing. This sense of prohibition does not come from the State either, i. It is not an easy thing to explain; these are complex questions, and they should be asked.

Empathy, being civilized, caring about others… All those things have developed willy-nilly over the centuries, but not enough, as violence and hate and cruelty is still so prevalent, prevalent among religious Jews and Christians and Muslims and their non-believing counterparts as well. We have enough homicides in the world. The prisons are filled with homicidal maniacs. So for all of our sakes, stay religious until you figure out how you as a man, an individual with your own set of values and sensibilities, feel about killing — and not a child or soldier taking orders from Big Daddy in the Sky.

Yes, I am expressing some disdain. Many Holy Books do advocate killing. Did you read what someone had written above about all the different religions all saying different things? Religion cannot possibly last; no lie can live forever. Regards, Report abuse. Actually it does, because the brain development governing sexual attraction, is similarly affected by hormonal effects on the embryo in the womb. I recall this earlier comment, but it appears when it comes to homosexuals and intersex people, you express an urge for friends and family to bring pressure to bear on then in exactly that way!

So which is it? Just as the writer of the article did, one can choose not to follow the laws. There seem to be conflicting claims and compartmentalised thinking in your comments. Perhaps there are some reasons here in threats to apostates, why you seem to have mental blocks making you unable to follow the reasoning which challenges some of your mistaken preconceptions.

Well Avi I appear to have underestimated your smiling hate and condescension. And if I preferred insularity I would not have posted. What I disdain however is arguing with a dogmatic close minded person which you quite clearly are. This world is no less valid than yours. These are of course worked out by people making informed judgements on predicted outcomes and balancing the interests of various parties. For example professions such as doctors have codes of conduct, which most follow voluntarily, but which include sanctions against rogue individuals.

Now we are talking! However laws as I explained should be based on evidence and predicted outcomes, not ancient superstitions. Actually no! Most systems are less than perfect, and many are corrupt! That is where the objective evaluation of various political systems comes in. The values are chosen by the people of the community.

All laws and codes of conduct are the work of humans, including those which some try to enhance by sticking a god-badge on to them. Actually, it does because it looks at the sources of ideas and mental processes directing the behaviour patterns under discussion. I recognise god-beliefs as a mental delusion created by childhood indoctrination.

Groups form their own rules, but it is perfectly reasonable to evaluate the effects of these on members, relations of member, friends of members, children of members and members who wish to leave the group. As with politics in general applications of rules are open to abuses, so criticism and in extreme cases actions are justified.

There are many examples where authority figures in religions sometimes in league with politicians , abuse their positions to the detriment of their members. Not only are many regular posters on this site well read, but many are ex-Christians, from Muslim families or are secular Jews. There is a wide ranging understanding of religions and their effects in societies.

Would that be okay with you? I think we are centering on the problem! My set of questions sure seems to have exposed the closed mind and smiling hate trademark pending. Avi would regard his son being homosexual as terrible. The cognitive dissonance and absolute lack of self awareness is staggering. Guy with his hair parted on the side, accountant, clean shaven, neat orderly???? Serial killer. I can only assume…. And as I have never been religions and come from a family of non-religious people and have had very little contact with orthodox Jews and know very little about Judaism, I can only assume….

I would also add that as the atheist Dr. Jonathan Miller admitted, we do owe religion, the Christian religion in particular, a certain debt of gratitude; it helped to move the evolution of our moral idea of brotherly love along. But morality is not from God. No, that would not be okay with Alan or with any of us. It would be dreadful. But that is the world we live in and the struggle for humane laws and justice is continuous, and cruelty and injustice and bigotry, etc.

That is far, far more dangerous, far more insidious — and you know it. Yes you have centered on a fundamental problem. Dan responded: No, that would not be okay with Alan or with any of us. Dan, what I am asking is: Why would it not be okay with you? I am not seeing an answer to this question. I will note that I had the same discussion recently with my brother, a practicing, believing Orthodox Jew who maintains that one can devise a moral code without religion.

But my brother, along with all the posters on this site, has been unable to logically explain why this moral code would have any standing or any validity. What makes something right or wrong? To this, I have not heard an answer from the atheists on this site or from my believing brother, much as he wants to side with you. I am saying that as of yet, I have not heard a cogent rationale for it. I am open to suggestions!

Avi — He also introduced other non-related issues e. Of course not — I explained secular values earlier. There needs to be various bodies to hold those in authority accountable. When particular religions dominate the local legislatures national legislatures, police and the courts, actions of religious authorities are looked at through rosy spectacles, and we get the sorts of covered up abuses, such as Catholic priests raping children with impunity.

Not really! The former view require a LOT more study! It is the same with making the effort of developing the ability to work out your own code of conduct, V copying a simplistic one which is spoon-fed to you. Science based decisions on abortions are determined by survivability without debilitating complications affecting the baby or the mother, and the later potential life quality of the infant.

You are going to have to stick around and join in with discussions on how the brain works, evolution and animal behaviour, to name a few, and be as open minded as you are to suggestions, if you want an answer that you might be happy with. Morality is not devised by atheist but by millions of years of evolution. I was wondering if Religious Jewish people would be happy being represented here by Avi and I googled a few things and found this;. Why would it not be okay to kill people in a given secular community? These ideas and arguments are debated and it is rare to find a society where there is universal agreement about what should be considered right and proper and what is considered wrong and improper.

With regards to the State, I would say that in a democracy, where people are allowed to worship as they wish and to speak their minds and be who they are, its citizens should be able to enjoy their natural right of freedom to exist assuming that they are able to obey reasonable laws , to live their lives, without fear of being arrested or persecuted or punished, without being criminalized. Dictators are always capricious and always impose their paltry will upon the freedom and the pursuit of happiness of others, trample on that right.

Democracy is a state of grace, easily lost; laws concerning justice are a delicate thing too, based often on consensus. But that is the nature of morality with regards to the State. Perhaps this basic uncertainty as to why one must not do this or that has given rise for the need on the part of many for some kind of ultimate authority on these matters. Democracy is a grace. Fascism goes back to our infancy and childhood, where we were always told how to live.

We were told, Yes, you may do this; no, you may not do that. So the secret of fascism is that it has this appeal to people whose later lives are not satisfactory. Murder as a way of life is not an isolated issue; it is bound up inextricably with such things as justice and truth. To condone murder is to deny justice and to affirm lies such as those based on prejudice or a false sense of moral superiority. Why is it better not to kill? Because we as individuals have risen above the egotism of brutes, because we regard indifference to human life as depraved. Persecution and murder based on capricious laws or the need to control in order to maintain power is not only impractical, it is based on a system that is unsustainable as it is based on lies and on vice — and all lies and all vice eventually do harm and destroy those who engage in them in the end.

From a mere pragmatic point of view such a way of life where killing is considered lawful or acceptable would make life impossible. The question as to whether this is learned or not does not belong here; let us assume it is learned, for clearly it can be.

The opposite of this is base egotism. It comes from no law although the laws are a practical necessary to keep selfish men from preying on others which is no basis for organizing a civilized society that aspires towards the cultural and aesthetic Good or that has any affinity with Beauty. Thou Shalt Not Kill is a flimsy thing indeed designed, presumably, for criminal-types and accepted by malleable, pathetic, hoodwinked half-men and half-women who have no sense of their own personal dignity or the dignity of others, and would or might be inclined to kill or do harm without such messages of prohibition, sent by a man-made God.

The strength of the prohibition is proportionate to the latent desire to commit the crime. Gods are made in the image of Man and his laws cannot be relied on. Gods and goddesses belong to the realm of mythology. When I do good, I feel good. When I do bad, I feel bad. Not true, at least for Judaism. We believe that while God guides many things, we have the free will to do good or evil.

We believe we can overcome our inadequacies. Surely you must admit that you may be wrong, because you have no experience to dictate otherwise. I, however, have the experience within Judaism to comfortably assert surety! To make a block of text orange just add a right arrow directly in front of the first word. Try that and see if it works. Actually I quoted Olgun saying that and posted the the chapter in the book giving depth of explanations on the evolutionary genetics of altruistic interactions in populations.

Actually, not far off from how Judaism thinks, although there is a wide spectrum Jewish law is very complicated, much more complicated than civil law, and different experts hold different views, all based on their incredible knowledge of the subjects at hand. Science is a mostly objective discipline, it has no feelings and no moral contours.

People make moral judgments, and I still await someone who will answer my core question: How does an atheist determine what is moral? Avi In your comment you are sure to run into trouble with this communication. The problem is that the science community has one thing in common and that is how we think and talk about probability. Anyone here who has a college degree in science or math processes certain statements and assertions in the same way due to the training and education that we have.

We entertain hypotheses and think about how to test them. We collect, organize and analyse data. We make conclusions based on those analyses and then consider the implications of those results. When in the company of my fellow science majors this is something I count on them knowing. To me, everything is a probability equation. Some things are more probable or less probable than other things. This is how we view the probability of the existence of a god or collection of gods or any other supernatural creature.

The probability that there is an omniscient, omnipotent being that has created this universe and all of the life in it is in fact, so absolutely minuscule as to be for all intents and purposes — so close to the number zero that we will all now say — the probability that this entity exists is ZERO. The end. We will no longer waste our time speculating as to its nature and properties and we will move on to more interesting hypotheses. We will end up talking past each other forever if these two very different ways of understanding reality are maintained.

What any science major will require and what anyone who relies on logic and rational thinking will require is for you to present a hypothesis — God exists, and then explain how you will collect data and move to a conclusion one way or another, that will satisfy us that this is truth or not truth. This cannot possibly be processed by us and it makes no sense whatsoever. It is only a feeling stated with emphasis. My field is psychology and I can tell you that emphatic statements that are based on nothing but feelings are very common and are often completely false.

Too many of these curious statements in too short a time and your shrink will be reaching for his prescription meds pad, pen in hand. Not good. When they do this they usually include a link to the evidence for their assertion. If they fail to do that you are within your rights to ask for their evidence. This is how science and rational thinking works. I hope you will try to talk to your brother again about his ideas on secular morality. Your religion, like all of them, include a little subroutine that kicks off a fierce defensive reaction. Yes, they all have this feature. Can you suppress this reaction long enough to give his ideas and the ideas presented here a fair trial?

Also, you are perfectly capable of reading some entry level science and material on ethics, humanism, etc. Even if it never changes your mind, there is some credit to you for making an honest attempt to try to understand how many other good people create a worldview that is moral and good with no reference at all to a supernatural all powerful being. Or, you could double down on the substantial defense systems that are evident in all of your comments here.

I can do much better than that! I can also point out the thousands of believers in other gods with conflicting properties which are followed by believers who are equally certain their their versions of gods are THE correct ones, — and finally I have the mounting evidence from psychologists and neuroscientists that god-delusions are a feature of believers brains which dominate their core beliefs. Not at all! God delusions dominate the subjective thinking and blank out perceptions of reality, which might lead their host brains to apostasy! It is how the religious memes are preserved, copied, and passed on as comfortable certainties devoid of any supporting material evidence.

However as all the various god-delusions see list of deities 77 , produce claims which are in conflict with each other, there is no reason to think any of them have any material basis beyond the illusions in the brain chemistry and circuitry of their believers. Jeeze Alan, we really need to take this show on the road!!! That is correct. Science informs moral judgements which can then be made on the basis of reliable information and predicted outcomes. They do indeed, but if they use guesswork or dogma in place of science, their judgements will most probably be flawed due to a lack of proper evidence-based information.

Other issues are dealt with in a similar manner on their merits. Btw, speaking of morality, I was just having a bite to eat on 84th and Third Avenue. I noticed a crowd outside. A young man had collapsed and was foaming at the mouth. The ambulance came. My point; everyone was standing around, concerned, on their cell phones. Some people are cruel. But most of us have empathy to some degree, and that is just the way it is.

It is possible to imagine a world without empathy. HG Welles described such a world. Whether empathy is more natural or not is an open question, but we have it and all I can do is hope that we as a species never lose it. That would be contrary to my values and would not be a world that I would choose to be part of if I found myself transported to such a world and had the ability to decide my own fate. Life is what we make of it, our experience is what we interpret, our values are what we form and what we develop.

We create all of it — and it varies. Yes, yes, there might be a God. But the burden of proof is on you to prove that something does exist. Do you comprehend that? Thinking about God all the time is a wasted life. You are thinking about nothing. You only know what you feel, and that is not objective truth; No one can know nothing, and that is why you cannot describe him. Nothing to describe. And that is all God is: Nothing. And you have no answer to that, cannot say anything at all about this God of yours.

This is madness and imbecility. You think Judaism is profound but are in denial; Judaism is based essentially on nothing. Go help someone. Quit thy childhood and wake up. Laurie, pssst, come here for a second. Started with my copy in my Dickens collection — the print is so tiny I almost went cross-eyed. Switched to the free Kindle edition. Easier on the eyes. I feel a pall over my life because of him. If I plunge into a deep dark depression it will all be your fault.

And there we have it finally, the arrogance of surety that always comes out in the end when believers talk about their non existent deities. We are not so arrogant as to claim surety in anything. Only the delusional do that. We talk about probabilities and evidence. It is irrelevant what in in our gut or inside our own heads. Only reproducable evidence matters. Evidence that can be demonstrated to a third party with no axe to grind and which produces the same results every time. There is no evidence for the existence of any god that has ever been postulated or worshipped.

In the absence of such evidence we simply decline to accept the postulation that such a god exists and leave the burden of proof back where it belongs — on the believer. When we factor in the thousands of gods that humans have invented over the millenia and no proof for any of them, when we factor in the laws of physics which make omniscience and omnipotence impossible. When we factor in that we already have robust scientific explanations for most of the things that religion has turned out to have been wrong about such as the earth being the centre of the universe, how planets and solar systems form, the age of the earth and the universe, evolution rather than creation myths.

Their faith is unshakeable despite zero evidence to support it. It would not take incontrovertible evidence to inspire faith in me. Religion is based on faith, not reason. That is why people like Avi get under my skin; they are sure of something that one can not possibly be sure of; that is fanaticism, as defined by Kant. You seem to be very sure what ought to be obvious to other people which is more of the arrogance I mentioned in my previous post. What if that self regulating group practices cannibalism, female genital mutilation, paedophilia?

Hell no is the answer. The reason is that believing in, and worshipping, that which does not exist is delusional. Essentially a form of mental illness and that reflects poorly on all of humanity and any aspirations we might have to one day be able to call ourselves civilised. I have trouble making up my mind about all this. I take back what I said in comment I want evidence. Faith in God is faith in nothing too. Next week I might say something different. But have yet to produce ANY evidence of this happening or any mechanism showing how gods are involved in this working of nature.

As can all people, but that has nothing to do with gods, or the inadequacies of dogmas and doctrines. Actually, once theists stop making vague suggestions that some obscure god-thingy exists somewhere out of sight, and list the claimed properties and activities of their gods, these are easily and rapidly debunked by scientific and historical evidence. They are shown to be myths and folk-law from the imaginations of people in the past.

They were used as manipulative tools by elites seeking power over local populations, and organising tribal followings to attack rivals and rival populations. Today they still are! Thanks, Laurie, it worked; reminds me of my days in publishing when I would do a bit of coding. Ideally, one indeed should keep God in mind all the time; this is the essence of life!

Yes, it does seem we are talking past one another as someone said in a post. The problem is that I am perfectly logical while you folks are not. But I digress. The logical conclusion is that as society advances, we will become ever more good a term you cannot even explain, but so be it. Then why, my friends, have the last years featured more evil than at any time in history? The answer is that the natural world has nothing to do with good and evil; it is simply the setting in which good and evil and neutral acts take place!

I repeatedly asked for a definition of good. Dan responded with a story about bystanders having concern for someone who was ill. Dan, you are right; people have good within them, because God put good within them! God and good are, as far as I know, of common etymology.

You all know the story of Leopold and Loeb and the im perfect murder. Leopold and Loeb held themselves, by virtue of their intellects, to be superior beings who had the right to do whatever they wanted to those they held to be inferior. What a perfect demonstration of how amorality leads to evil.

Of course, none of you can say Leopold and Loeb were wrong; they held themselves to be scientifically superior! And the Nazis did the same. No, I am not saying you are Nazis! I am sure someone will jump on me for invoking the Holocaust. But it is indisputable that the Nazis believed themselves to be biologically advanced. They held Jews, Romas and others to be biologically inferior. Do you believe that similar abominations cannot be repeated? What about euthanasia in supposedly civililzed, advanced, secular societies? Need I say more? But since we are talking about science, can someone please explain how and why we would develop two eyes?

And I am still waiting an answer to how matter appeared. That is why people like Avi get under my skin; they are sure of something that one can not possibly be sure of. Dan, I can say the same about you; you are so certain about your beliefs that you cannot imagine anything else being correct.

How do you know that our logic even commonly shared logic is reliable? What makes you think that your thinking process is a valid one? How, indeed, do you draw conclusions about anything? As I explained in an earlier post, logic a deductive or inductive process, not a badge to be stuck on to assertions which endorse your preconceptions. Unless the starting premises are evidence based, anything built on them will be hypothetical fantasy! Logical reasoning from evidence, is one of the key skills of scientists in their investigations seeking understanding of the workings of nature.

That is one of the reasons why the majority of top scientists are atheists. The majority of species on this planet have no concept of gods, and the majority of humans on this planet have no belief in your particular version of a god. There is no evidence to suggest this causes them any problems. Although beliefs in some other gods certainly do! I can assure you I have had no need of gods since I matured to the formal operations stage of mental development as a teenager. Arkrid, while Jews do not rely on supernatural evidence for our beliefs Maimonides, one of the greatest thinkers of all time, is quite clear on this subject , God DID leave a glowing message in the sky.

He spoke to us at Mount Sinai. Also, I have not written about evolution, your sacred touchstone, and the truth is I have no problem accepting a God-guided evolution. Theistic evolution has no explained mechanism and the mechanisms of evolution have NOTHING to do with being guided towards particular objectives.

None of its advocates have produce anything which credible resembles science! Eyes have evolved many times n the evolution of life selective pressures in evolution promote replication of mechanisms which work or work better than the competition, bin ocular vision give a greater depth of perception of distance or a wider field of vision — depending on the placing of the eyes on the skull. Insect vision sees a wider range of wavelengths and can ultraviolet light which humans cannot. Spiders have numerous eyes and more than one type of eye. Clearly any individual snake which was poisoned by its own venom would not live to reproduce, so only those with immunity would develop the venom and the immunity together over many generations.

When cold jam together and ice. Two breakfast-cupfuls of John Bull oats, half a cupful sugar, one scant cupful plain flour, half a cupful melted butter. Mix one table-spoonful golden syrup, two table-spoonfuls boiling water, and one teaspoon-ful bicarbonate of soda, until they froth, then add the melted butter. Mix in dry ingredients and drop in spoonfuls on greased tray. Bake in a slow oven. Everything is fine, all is well. Australian English often uses the feminine pronoun she where standard English would use it. She's apples was originally rhyming slang - apple and spice or apple and rice for 'nice'.

The phrase has now lost all connection with its rhyming slang origin. First recorded in the s the term can still be heard today. MacQuarrie We and Baby : 'She'll be apples! Afternoon, as in see you Saturday arvo. It is often used in the phrase this arvo , which is sometimes shortened to sarvo : meet you after the game, sarvo.

Arvo is an example of a special feature of Australian English, the habit of adding -o to an abbreviated word. First recorded in the s and still going strong today. The phrase was first recorded in the s. In recent years it has also been used with reference to questions of gender identity, and in this sense it has been exported to other countries.

Australia; Australian. The abbreviation Aussie is a typical example of the way Australians abbreviate words and then add the -ie or -y suffix. Other common examples includes budgie a budgerigar , rellie a relative , and tradie a tradesperson. The word is used as a noun to refer to the country and to a person born or residing in the country, and as an adjective denoting something relating to Australia. Aussie is also used as an abbreviation for 'Australian English' and the 'Australian dollar'. The earliest evidence for Aussie occurs in the context of the First World War. Moberly Experiences 'Dinki Di' R.

Nurse : A farewell dance for the boys going home to 'Aussie' tomorrow. Nurse : One of our Aussie officers. Why is Australia called Australia? From the early sixteenth century, European philosophers and mapmakers assumed a great southern continent existed south of Asia. They called this hypothetical place Terra Australis , Latin for 'southern land'. The first European contact with Australia was in the early seventeenth century, when Dutch explorers touched on parts of the Australian continent. As a result of their explorations, that part of the mainland lying west of the meridian which passes through Torres Strait was named Nova Hollandia Latin for 'New Holland'.

Cook entered the word Astralia misspelt thus in his journal the following August. However he did so only in reference to an earlier seeker of the southern land, the Portuguese-born navigator Pedro Fernandez de Quiros, who in had named the New Hebrides Austrialis de Spiritu Santo.

Cook says: The Islands discover'd by Quiros call'd by him Astralia del Espiritu Santo lays in this parallel but how far to the East is hard to say. Cook himself called the new continent New Holland , a name that acknowledges the early Dutch exploration; the eastern coast he claimed for Britain and called New South Wales. The first written record of Australia an anglicised form of Terra Australis as a name for the known continent did not occur until George Shaw in his Zoology of New Holland refers to:.

It was Matthew Flinders, English navigator and the first person to circumnavigate and map Australia's coastline , who first expressed a strong preference for the name Australia. He gave his reasons in It is necessary, however, to geographical propriety, that the whole body of land should be designated under one general name; on this account, and under the circumstances of the discovery of the different parts, it seems best to refer back to the original Terra Australis, or Australia; which being descriptive of its situation, having antiquity to recommend it, and no reference to either of the two claiming nations, is perhaps the least objectionable that could have been chosen; for it is little to apprehended, that any considerable body of land, in a more southern situation, will be hereafter discovered.

To these geographical, historical and political reasons for preferring the name, he adds in his account of his voyages that Australia is 'agreeable to the ear, and an assimilation to the names of the other great portions of the earth'. Australia was championed too by Lachlan Macquarie, Governor of New South Wales from , who was aware of Flinders' preference and popularised the name by using it in official dispatches to London.

He writes in of:. With Macquarie's kickstart Australia eventually proved to be the popular choice. Although the name New Holland continued alongside it for some time, by William Westgarth noted that 'the old term New Holland may now be regarded as supplanted by that happier and fitter one of Australia'. A Queenslander. The term derives from the joking notion as perceived from the southern states of Australia that Queenslanders spend their time putting bends into bananas.

An article from 15 July in the Queenslander provides a forerunner to the term when a man is asked by the Queen what his occupation is:. Further to enlighten her Majesty he explained that bananas grew straight on the trees, and so just before they ripened, his was the job to mount the ladder, and with a specialised twist of the wrist, put into the fruit the Grecian bend that was half its charm.

The association of bananas with Queensland 'banana land' is based on the extensive banana-growing industry in tropical Queensland. The Queensland border has been called the Banana curtain and Brisbane has been called Banana city. Banana bender , in reference to a Queenslander, is first recorded in and is till commonly heard.

What do you say to a quick look at the banana-benders? Soon after white settlement in the word bandicoot the name for the Indian mammal Bandicota indica was applied to several Australian mammals having long pointed heads and bearing some resemblance to their Indian namesake. In David Collins writes of the 'bones of small animals, such as opossums From s the word bandicoot has been used in various distinctively Australian phrases as an emblem of deprivation or desolation. In H. Watson in Lecture on South Australia writes: 'The land here is generally good; there is a small proportion that is actually good for nothing; to use a colonial phrase, "a bandicoot an animal between a rat and a rabbit would starve upon it".

Probably from the perception of the bandicoot's burrowing habits, a new Australian verb to bandicoot arose towards the end of the nineteenth century. It means 'to remove potatoes from the ground, leaving the tops undisturbed'. Usually this activity is surreptitious. The bandicooter goes at night to a field of ripe potatoes and carefully extracts the tubers from the roots without disturbing the tops. Extremely unhappy. Bandicoots are small marsupials with long faces, and have been given a role in Australian English in similes that suggest unhappiness or some kind of deprivation see above.

The expression miserable as a bandicoot was first recorded in the s. The large woody cone of several Banksia species, originally as a character in children's stories. Banksia is the name of an Australian genus of shrubs and trees with about 60 species. It was named after the botanist Sir Joseph Banks, who was on the Endeavour with James Cook on his voyage of discovery in After flowering, many banksias form thick woody cones, often in strange shapes.

It was on such grotesque shapes that May Gibbs modelled her banksia men in Snugglepot and Cuddlepie of 'She could see the glistening, wicked eyes of Mrs.

I Had to Take My Dirty Panties to a Rabbi, and So Has Every Orthodox Jewish Woman

Snake and the bushy heads of the bad Banksia men'. Prichard Bid me to Love : Louise See what I've got in my pocket for you Bill : diving into a pocket of her coat and pulling out a banksia cone A banksia man. Oh Mum! Smith Saddle in the Kitchen : Hell was under the well near the cow paddock, deep and murky and peopled by gnarled and knobby banksia men who lurked there waiting for the unguarded to fall in. A topic of great public interest, especially a political one. The term derives from the notion that a topic is so interesting that it could halt proceedings at a barbecue - and anything that could interrupt an Aussie barbecue would have to be very significant indeed!

The term was coined by Australian prime minister John Howard in in the context of balancing work pressures with family responsibilities. Barbecue stopper is now used in a wide range of contexts. For an earlier discussion of the term see our Word of the Month article from August The name of the Barcoo River in western Queensland has been used since the s as a shorthand reference for the hardships, privations, and living conditions of the outback.

Poor diets were common in remote areas, with little access to fresh vegetables or fruit, and as a result diseases caused by dietary deficiencies, such Barcoo rot —a form of scurvy characterised by chronic sores—were common. Another illness probably caused by poor diet was Barcoo sickness also called Barcoo vomit , Barcoo spew , or just Barcoo , a condition characterised by vomiting. Barcoo can also typify the laconic bush wit. To give support or encouragement to a person, team, etc.

Some claim barrack comes from Australian pidgin to poke borak at 'to deride', but its origin is probably from Northern Irish barrack 'to brag; to be boastful'. By itself barrack meant 'to jeer' and still does in British English , but the form barrack for transformed the jeering into cheering in Australian English.

The opening of the starting gates to begin a horserace. In horseracing the barrier is a starting gate at the racecourse. The word barrier is found in a number of horseracing terms in Australian English including barrier blanket a heavy blanket placed over the flanks of a racehorse to calm it when entering a barrier stall at the start of a race , barrier trial a practice race for young, inexperienced, or resuming racehorses , and barrier rogue a racehorse that regularly misbehaves when being placed into a starting gate.

Barrier rise is first recorded in the s. For a more detailed discussion of this term see our Word of the Month article from October Wilson's colt Merman, who, like Hova, was comparatively friendless at barrier rise. The word battler has been in the English language for a long time. The word is a borrowing from French in the Middle English period, and meant, literally, 'a person who battles or fights', and figuratively 'a person who fights against the odds or does not give up easily'. The corresponding English word was feohtan which gives us modern English 'to fight'.

English also borrowed the word war from the French in the twelfth century; it's the same word as modern French guerre. But the word battler , at the end of the nineteenth century, starts to acquire some distinctively Australian connotations. For this reason, it gets a guernsey in the Australian National Dictionary.

It describes the person with few natural advantages, who works doggedly and with little reward, who struggles for a livelihood and who displays courage in so doing. In Kylie Tennant writes: 'She was a battler, Snow admitted; impudent, hardy, cool, and she could take a "knock-back" as though it didn't matter, and come up to meet the next blow'. In this tradition, K. Roughly speaking, there are three kinds of people in this country: the rich, the middle class and the battlers'.

In the 21st century the term has been used in various political contests as this quotation in the Australian from 1 July demonstrates: 'The Prime Minister, who has built his success on an appeal to Australia's battlers, is about to meet thousands more of them in his northern Sydney seat of Bennelong'.

This sense is first recorded in the Bulletin in 'I found patch after patch destroyed. Almost everyone I met blamed the unfortunate "battler", and I put it down to some of the Sydney "talent" until I caught two Chows vigorously destroying melon-vines'. Again in the Bulletin in we find: 'They were old, white-bearded, travel-stained battlers of the track'. A person who frequents racecourses in search of a living, esp. The word is used in Australia with this sense from the end of the nineteenth century.

Cornelius Crowe in his Australian Slang Dictionary gives: ' Battlers broken-down backers of horses still sticking to the game'. In A. Wright in The Boy from Bullarah notes: 'He betook himself with his few remaining shillings to the home of the battler - Randwick [a racecourse in Sydney]'. In we find in the Bulletin : 'A bludger is about the lowest grade of human thing, and is a brothel bully A battler is the feminine'. Chandler in Darkest Adelaide c.

Meanings 2. This is still the person of the Henry Lawson tradition, who, 'with few natural advantages, works doggedly and with little reward, struggles for a livelihood and displays courage in so doing '. But perhaps the battler of contemporary Australia is more likely to be paying down a large mortgage rather than working hard to put food on the table!

Berley is ground-bait scattered by an angler in the water to attract fish to a line or lure. Anglers use a variety of baits for berley, such as bread, or fish heads and guts. Poultry mash and tinned cat food make more unusual berleying material, although this pales beside a Bulletin article in suggesting 'a kerosene-tinful of rabbit carcasses boiled to a pulp' as the best berley for Murray cod. The first evidence for the noun occurs in the s.

The origin of the word is unknown. To display or boast of one's wealth; to exaggerate one's own importance, achievements, etc. In pre-decimal currency days the larger the denomination, the bigger the banknote. Big-noting arose from the connection between flashing large sums of money about and showing off. He had admitted producing it to 'big note' himself in the eyes of the young woman and her parents. Foster Man of Letters : He's never been one to big-note himself.

A member of a gang of motorcyclists. Bikie follows a very common pattern in Australian English by incorporating the -ie or -y suffix. This suffix works as an informal marker in the language. In early use bikie often referred to any member of a motorcycle motorbike gang or club - often associated with youth culture. In more recent times the term is often associated with gangs of motorcylists operating on the fringes of legality. Bikie is first recorded in the s. For a more detailied discussion of the term see our Word of the Month article from March Some bikies procure, distribute and sell drugs through their 'associates', who in turn sell them to kids.

The bilby is either of two Australian bandicoots, especially the rabbit-eared bandicoot Macrotis lagotis , a burrowing marsupial of woodlands and plains of drier parts of mainland Australia. The word is a borrowing from Yuwaalaraay an Aboriginal language of northern New South Wales and neighbouring languages.

The bilby is also known as dalgyte in Western Australia and pinky in South Australia. Since the early s there have been attempts to replace the Easter bunny with the Easter bilby. At Easter it is now possible to buy chocolate bilbies. Bilby is first recorded in the s. An arm of a river, made by water flowing from the main stream usually only in time of flood to form a backwater, blind creek, anabranch, or, when the water level falls, a pool or lagoon often of considerable extent ; the dry bed of such a formation. Billabongs are often formed when floodwaters recede. A vessel for the boiling of water, making of tea, etc.

It is not, as popularly thought, related to the Aboriginal word billabong. Billy is first recorded in the s. Burrows Adventures of a Mounted Trooper in the Australain Constabulary : A 'billy' is a tin vessel, something between a saucepan and a kettle, always black outside from being constantly on the fire, and looking brown inside from the quantity of tea that is generally to be seen in it. Billycart is a shortened form of the Australian term billy-goat cart which dates back to the s.

In earlier times the term applied to a small cart, often two-wheeled, that was pulled by a goat.

Pushing back against the bullies

These billycarts were used for such purposes as home deliveries, and they were also used in races. The term was then applied to any homemade go-cart. Billycart is recorded in the first decade of the 20th century. Winton Cloudstreet : Bits of busted billycarts and boxes litter the place beneath the sagging clothesline. Any of several plants bearing barbed fruits, especially herbs of the widespread genus Calotis ; the fruit of these plants. Bindi-eye is oftened shortened to bindi , and can be spelt in several ways including bindy-eye and bindii.

Bindi-eye is usually considered a weed when found in one's lawn. Many a child's play has been painfully interrupted by the sharp barbs of the plant which have a habit of sticking into the sole of one's foot. Bindy-eye is first recorded in the s. A fight or skirmish; a collision. Bingle is perhaps from Cornish dialect bing 'a thump or blow'. Most other words derived from Cornish dialect in Australian English were originally related to mining, including fossick.

The word is frequently used to refer to a car collision. Bingle is first recorded in the s. Carr Surfie : There was this clang of metal on metal and both cars lurched over to the shoulder and we nearly went for a bingle. A mongrel. A dog or other animal which is made up of a bit of this and a bit of that. This meaning is common today, but when bitser first appeared in the s it referred to any contraption or vehicle that was made of spare parts, or had odd bits and pieces added.

The small girl pondered. My friends call him a "bitzer"', she replied. My favourite was a bitser named Sheila. The black stump of Australian legend first appears in the late 19th century, and is an imaginary marker at the limits of settlement. Anywhere beyond the black stump is beyond civilisation, deep in the outback, whereas something this side of the black stump belongs to the known world. Although the towns of Blackall, Coolah and Merriwagga each claim to possess the original black stump , a single stump is unlikely to be the origin of this term.

It is more probable that the burnt and blackened tree stumps, ubiquitous in the outback, and used as markers when giving directions to travellers is the origin - this sense of black stump is recorded from Tracks have been made, commencing nowhere and ending the same, roads have been constructed haphazard, bridges have been built that had no roads leading either to or from them, railways have terminated at the proverbial black stump. Beyond the Black Stump.

Not shown on the petrol station maps, even. A very unperceptive person; such a person as a type. This term often appears in the phrase even blind Freddy could see that. Although the term may not derive from an actual person, early commentators associate it with a blind Sydney character or characters. Australian lexicographer Sidney Baker wrote in that 'Legend has it that there was a blind hawker in Sydney in the s, named Freddy, whose blindness did not prevent his moving freely about the central city area'.

Other commentators suggest a character who frequented various Sydney sporting venues in the first decades of the 20th century could be the original Freddy. The term itself is first recorded in It applied to a person of great heart, who displayed courage, loyalty, and mateship.

To defeat a competitor by a very small margin; to win narrowly. This verb derives from the noun blouse meaning 'the silk jacket worn by a jockey'. As the origin of this word would indicate, much of the evidence is from the sport of horseracing. For a detailed discussion of blouse see our Word of the Month article from November This word is a survival of British slang bludger , meaning 'a prostitute's pimp'. The word is ultimately a shortening of bludgeoner. A bludgeoner not surprisingly was a person who carried a bludgeon 'a short stout stick or club'.

It appears in a mid-nineteenth century English slang dictionary as a term for 'a low thief, who does not hesitate to use violence'. By the s the 'prostitute's pimp' sense of bludger is found in Australian sources. In the Sydney Slang Dictionary of bludgers are defined as 'plunderers in company with prostitutes'. Cornelius Crowe, in his Australian Slang Dictionary , defines a bludger as 'a thief who will use his bludgeon and lives on the gains of immoral women'.

Thus bludger came to mean 'one who lives on the earnings of a prostitute'. It retained this meaning until the midth century. From the early twentieth century it moved out to be a more general term of abuse, especially as applied to a person who appears to live off the efforts of others as a pimp lives on the earnings of a prostitute.

It was then used to refer to a person engaged in non-manual labour - a white-collar worker. This sense appears as early as , but its typical use is represented by this passage from D. Whitington's Treasure Upon Earth : '"Bludgers" he dubbed them early, because in his language anyone who did not work with his hands at a laboring job was a bludger'. And so it came to mean 'an idler, one who makes little effort'. In the war newspaper Ack Ack News in we find: 'Who said our sappers are bludgers? Cleary in Just let me be writes: 'Everything I backed ran like a no-hoper. Four certs I had, and the bludgers were so far back the ambulance nearly had to bring 'em home'.

And thence to 'a person who does not make a fair contribution to a cost, enterprise etc. Niland writes in The Shiralee : 'Put the nips into me for tea and sugar and tobacco in his usual style. The biggest bludger in the country'. In J. O'Grady writes: 'When it comes to your turn, return the "shout". Otherwise the word will spread that you are a "bludger", and there is no worse thing to be'. The term dole bludger i. From the following year we have a citation indicating a reaction to the use of the term: Cattleman Rockhampton 'Young people are being forced from their country homes because of a lack of work opportunities and the only response from these so-called political protectors is to label them as dole bludgers'.

Throughout the history of the word, most bludgers appear to have been male. The term bludgeress made a brief appearance in the first decade of this century - 'Latterly, bludgers, so the police say, are marrying bludgeresses' Truth 27 September - but it was shortlived. The word bluey in Australian English has a variety of meanings. The most common is the swag i. There's the everlasting swaggie with his bluey on his back who is striking out for sunset on the Never-never track.

Goodge, Hits! The association of the swaggie and his bluey continues in more recent evidence for the term:. A swaggie suddenly appeared out of the bush, unshaven, with wild, haunted eyes, his bluey and billycan on his back. Cross, George and Widda-Woman That bluey is later transferred to luggage in general, is perhaps not surprising in an urban society which romanticises its 'bush' tradition:. Canberra Times 19 Nov.

The word has been used to denote another item of clothing - denim working trousers or overalls - but the citation evidence indicates the last citation being that this usage is no longer current. More familiar is the use of bluey to describe a summons, especially for a traffic offence originally printed on blue paper :. Perhaps the most Australian use of bluey is the curious use of it to describe a red-headed person first recorded in :. Paterson, Shearer's Colt : 'Bluey', as the crowd called him, had found another winner. All red-haired men are called 'Bluey' in Australia for some reason or other.

Conquest, Dusty Distances : I found out later that he was a native of New South Wales, called ' Bluey because of his red hair - typical Australian logic. A more literal use of bluey in Australian English is its application to fauna whose names begin with blue and which is predominantly blue in colour:. Ornithologists refer to them as some species of wood swallow They're all 'blueys' to us.

There are two senses of the word bodgie in Australian English, both probably deriving from an earlier now obsolete word bodger. The obsolete bodger probably derives from British dialect bodge 'to work clumsily'. In Australian English in the s and s bodger meant: 'Something or occasionally someone which is fake, false, or worthless'. The noun was also used adjectivally. Typical uses:. Hardy, Power without Glory : This entailed the addition of as many more 'bodger' votes as possible.

Baker, The Australian Language : An earlier underworld and Army use of bodger for something faked, worthless or shoddy. For example, a faked receipt or false name.. The word bodger was altered to bodgie , and this is now the standard form:. White, Silent Reach : This heap is hot - else why did they give it a one-coat spray job over the original white duco and fix it with bodgie number plates?

In the s another sense of bodgie arose. The word was used to describe a male youth, distinguished by his conformity to certain fashions of dress and larrikin behaviour; analogous to the British 'teddy boy':. This sense of bodgie seems to be an abbreviation of the word bodger with the addition of the -ie -y suffix.

Mr Hewett says his research indicates that the term 'bodgie' arose around the Darlinghurst area in Sydney. It was just after the end of World War II and rationing had caused a flourishing black market in American-made cloth. This sense of bodgie belongs primarily to the s, but bodgie in the sense 'fake, false, inferior, worthless' is alive and flourishing in Australian English.

An uncultured and unsophisticated person; a boorish and uncouth person. The early evidence is largely confined to teenage slang. Some lexicographers have suspected that the term may derive from the Bogan River and district in western New South Wales, but this is far from certain, and it seems more likely to be an unrelated coinage.

The term became widespread after it was used in the late s by the fictitious schoolgirl 'Kylie Mole' in the television series The Comedy Company. In the Daily Telegraph 29 November , in an article headed 'Same name a real bogan', a genuine schoolgirl named Kylie Mole 'reckons it really sux' " [i. Someone who wears their socks the wrong way or has the same number of holes in both legs of their stockings. A complete loser'. The earliest evidence we have been able to find for the term is in the surfing magazine Tracks September 'So what if I have a mohawk and wear Dr Martens boots for all you uninformed bogans?

The term has also generated a number of other terms including bogan chick , boganhood , and cashed-up bogan CUB. She had a quiet, middle-class upbringing in Box Hill, attending a private girls' school. Our geographic reach is flexible; residents of Taree and like communities, for example, may readily qualify for Boganhood, usually with little or no burdensome paperwork. Affectionate, even I'm a bogan because I'm overweight. For further discussions of bogan see our Word of the Month article from Novemeber , and a article 'Bogan: from Obscurity to Australia's most productive Word' in our newsletter Ozwords.

To swim or bathe. Bogey is a borrowing from the Aboriginal Sydney Language. The earliest records show the term being used in the pidgin English of Aborigines:. Bogie d'oway. These were Colby's words on coming out of the water. Dawson, Present State of Australia : 'Top bit, massa, bogy,' bathe and he threw himself into the water. Yes, said Mr Dixon, any two of ye that can swim. Harris, Settlers and Convicts : In the cool of the evening had a 'bogie' bathe in the river. Flory was much puzzled till she found out that a 'bogey', in colonial phraseology, meant a bath.

Mackenzie, Aurukun Diary : A bogey is the Queensland outback word for a bath or bathe. A bogey hole is a 'swimming or bathing hole'. The verb is rare now in Australian English. For an earlier discussion of bogey see our Word of the Month article from February A wave that forms over a submerged offshore reef or rock, sometimes in very calm weather or at high tide merely swelling but in other conditions breaking heavily and producing a dangerous stretch of broken water.

The word is now commonly used for the reef or rock itself. Horrobin Guide to Favourite Australian Fish ed. Bombora probably derives from the Aboriginal Sydney Language where it may have referred specifically to the current off Dobroyd Head, Port Jackson. Used allusively to refer to a hasty departure or speedy action. Bondi is the Sydney suburb renowned worldwide for its surf beach. Trams last ran on the line in , but the phrase has remained a part of Australian English.

Bonzer is an adjective meaning 'surpassingly good, splendid, great'. In the early records the spelling bonzer alternates with bonser , bonza , and bonzor. The adjective, noun, and adverb are all recorded from the early years of the 20th century:. Yuong Jack Hansen undertook to sit him but failed at every attempt. Jack states he got a 'bonza on the napper', at one time when thrown. Cable By Blow and Kiss : Came back grinning widely, with the assurance that it [ sc.

A fool or simpleton; a stupid person; an uncouth person. Boofhead derives from buffle-headed 'having a head like a buffalo' OED and bufflehead 'a fool, blockhead, stupid fellow' OED. Bufflehead has disappeared from standard English, but survives in its Australian form boofhead. It was popularised by the use of boofhead as the name of a dimwitted comic strip character invented by R.

Clark and introduced in the Sydney Daily Mail in May For an earlier discussion of the word see our Word of the Month article from December We get their boofheads so they can have ours. Boomerang is an Australian word which has moved into International English. The word was borrowed from an Aboriginal language in the early years of European settlement, but the exact language is still uncertain.

Early evidence suggests it was borrowed from a language in, or just south of, the Sydney region. While the spelling boomerang is now standard, in the early period the word was given a variety of spellings: bomerang , bommerang , bomring , boomereng , boomering , bumerang [etc]. The Australian Aboriginal boomerang is a crescent-shaped wooden implement used as a missile or club, in hunting or warfare, and for recreational purposes. The best-known type of boomerang , used primarily for recreation, can be made to circle in flight and return to the thrower.

Although boomerang -like objects were known in other parts of the world, the earliest examples and the greatest diversity of design is found in Australia. A specimen of a preserved boomerang has been found at Wyrie Swamp in South Australia and is dated at 10, years old. Boomerangs were not known throughout the entirety of Australia, being absent from the west of South Australia, the north Kimberley region of Western Australia, north-east Arnhem Land, and Tasmania.

In some regions boomerangs are decorated with designs that are either painted or cut into the wood. Very early in Australian English the term boomerang was used in transferred and figurative senses, especially with reference to something which returns to or recoils upon its author. These senses are now part of International English, but it is interesting to look at the earliest Australian evidence for the process of transfer and figurative use:.

By the s the verbal sense developed another meaning: 'to return in the manner of a boomerang; to recoil upon the author ; to ricochet'. Australia's a big country An' Freedom's humping bluey And Freedom's on the wallaby Oh don't you hear her Cooee, She's just begun to boomerang She'll knock the tyrants silly. On 13 November the Canberra Times reported that 'Greg Chappell's decision to send England in appeared to have boomeranged'.

These verbal senses of boomerang have also moved into International English. For a further discussion of boomerang see the article 'Boomerang, Boomerang, Thou Spirit of Australia! The phrase is first recorded in the s. A tax avoidance scheme. In the late s a large number of bottom of the harbour schemes were operating in corporate Australia. The term is usually used attributively. Hyland Diamond Dove : The feller in the dock was some fabulous creature - part lawyer, part farmer - who'd been caught in a bottom-of-the-harbour tax avoidance scheme.

An employee responsible for maintaining the outer fences on a station, or a publicly owned vermin-proof fence. This sense of boundary rider is recorded from the s but in more recent years, as a result of changes in technology and modes of transport, this occupation has become relatively rare. Since the s the term has been used of a boundary umpire in Australian Rules Football, a cricketer in a fielding position near the boundary, and a roving reporter at a sporting game. For a more detailed discussion of the original sense of boundary rider and the later sporting senses see our Word of the Month article from December McGinnis Tracking North : Mechanisation had finally reached the open-range country.

There were no more pumpers or boundary riders. Be the unlikely winner of an event; to win an event coming from well behind. For a detailed discussion of this phrase see our blog 'Doing a Bradbury: an Aussie term born in the Winter Olympics' which includes a video of Bradbury's famous win , and our Word of the Month article from August The Socceroos need some of that luck. The practice of improperly increasing the membership of a local branch of a political party in order to ensure the preselection of a particular candidate.

The term is a specific use of branch meaning 'a local division of a political party'. While the practice described by branch stacking has been around for a very long time, the word itself is first recorded in the s. Jeff Read: Social pressure against people who would deny other people their human rights….

But who defines human rights? When did same-sex marriage become one? If for no other reason, the speed of this revision should give people pause about the hounding of Eich. The irony: Mozilla kicked the guy out after pressure from Google which funds Mozilla essentially. Can you find one? The topic is not about controversial political views or even the issue of gay marriage , but solely about the acquisition and exercise of power. So shut up and tow the line. With an added risk that his husband could be deported.

This comment practically implied it was your last. It also somewhat implied that Tim F. Well this is slightly more respectful, but you did miss option C — I was playfully needling Eric — even after Tim F. The point of respect is not that I demand, expect, or even really care about respect from you.

The point is actually about two things: persuasiveness, and the pot calling the kettle black. Their hanging happened physically, not figuratively. They happened physically or, well, chemically, if you want to be technical about it. All this abuse happened physically , not metaphorically. Thirty-two of them burned to death — physically, not figuratively. Now compare this with what happened at Mozilla. Boardmembers resigned. A dating website suggested an alternative browser. If anyone used as much as fighting words, or even just foul language, none of the reporting mentions it.

If I would have been in such a situation, I would have started a boycott too. According to Wikipedia, U. Also, it is not obvious how to come up with a good estimate, but a significant number of US citizens in the late s must have had personal connections to people trapped or dead behind the Iron Curtain. Curiously, I have never heard a leftist endorse support of McCarthy-era blacklisting by people with a personal connection to surviving USSR subjects who might yet be killed in the future, or by people with personal connections to people who might well be casualties in the much-feared potential future all-out war with the USSR.

If you ever heard of such an endorsement, you would immediately conclude they were not a leftist. How would blacklisting people in this country with such a tenuous connection help people in other countries? Why would there be a need for such a war? That is hilarious, and I sincerely hope that OKCupid and their parent corporation get everything they deserve out of their PR.

Ability and willingness to escalate are part of the distinction. Many events that wind up with people maimed or killed started off as what any grade-schooler would immediately recognize as bullying. There may be a different standard for bullying for 8th grade girls, but there is no need for the wider society to buy into that; else you will need a different word for what 8th grade boys go through. I saw many more requests, in the initial waves, calling for him to explain his personal views, rather than suppress them. That is true, but does not falsify my statement.

Good for him for having a spine. Or is it a conclusion? From what? And even today I suspect a considerable number of directly elected Democrats are strongly motivated to avoid invoking McCarthy-as-worse-than-Stalin as a campaign piety, much the same way as a considerable number cannot safely campaign on leftist gun-control pieties.

As to the blustering and browbeating part, I suppose that reasonable people can disagree how much of it happened between the board members stepping down, the staffers asking Eich to resign, the dating site suggesting another browser, and the myriad people talking about this on the internet.

This is partly a matter of perception. Do you see gays saying that nobody who is homophobic should be allowed to have a job, support themselves, to exist? Do you think all racists and misogynists are unemployed now?

Do I think it is becoming increasingly difficult to hold homophobic views? Do I think your fear mongering is absurd and not rooted in reality and any evidence whatsoever? It will be increasingly difficult to be the leader of major organizations where public opinion matters if you cling to the belief that its okay to deny civil rights from people will different sexual preferences than your own.

This is true. Suggesting that people who understand that and want that will make it not only impossible but illegal for a homophobic person to hold employment is complete and utter fear mongering and fallacious.

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Because hounding someone out of their job and hanging an albatross around their neck within their professional field is such a minor inconvenience. No — but we used to consider and many feminists still do the simple relative lack of women upper management to be proof positive that active discrimination HAD to be occurring no other factors could possibly apply. Given how acceptable views have changed in the last few years, people who were comfortably liberal only a decade or so ago say, Orson Scott Card — ironically the guy who probably did more to positively change my mind on homosexuals are now radical hatemongers.

So yes, we have someone who donated money to help support a proposition that wishes to reverse what you refer to as a basic human right, marrying two people who in living memory would have been considered mentally ill at best. This is a proposition that passed with a majority of the people residing in CA who bothered to vote and with VERY strong support from the black community. So this guy supported a view arguably held by a majority of Californians, a majority of people in the US, and almost certainly the majority of the planet.

He does not have a record of individually mistreating anyone based on their gender as opposed to places where gays men are hung… , and has arguably done more to foster freedom of expression, thought, and communication than the vast majority of his critics for all people regardless of their gender. Stop using anything he had a significant hand in developing. Eric, in the interest of not getting stuck in a mutually-frustrating back-and-forth, let me try to re-frame the issue by asking you two questions:.

Yes, but this is too broad a question to answer the Eich case. The fact pattern that makes this unacceptable thuggery is much more specific. There is no easy general answer to this question. The meme inoculation is already occurring from all directions. All racists? Certainly not. Some racists are not just employed but are quite powerful in the employment biz. It can be observed that this is the common thing as well; congratulations, leftists. Pirating the names of classical liberal principles tolerance, equality, various kinds of personal autonomy for this crude ersatz is no excuse, just additional corruption.

The strategy enforces whatever racism and sexism pleases the left, and not just in small ways. Or consider that classifying gay men as unfit custodial parents is considered a serious matter, which makes it tricky for an honest leftist to explain how continuing to consider heterosexual men unfit parents is a negligible nonissue. It also screws up good outcomes directly e. Some clearly-imperfect progress toward tolerance can be celebrated by libertarians. This practically makes my point for me. Same thing with ridiculous harrassment judgements. In fact, the worst PC things happening now are things like rape prosecutions at the hands of prosecutors with almost infinite power, huge mandatory minimum sentences, and marginal cases.

Let me start by thanking everyone contributing to this thread. There are a lot of divergent views here and reading them has helped me sort out my own opinions on the subject of same sex marriage. I currently live in a conservative community in a state where same sex marriage is not recognized. Before we got married, some close friends of ours were joined in a wedding ceremony in San Francisco in They got married in a park, we got married in a church.

We all raised kids, paid mortgages, voted, mowed the lawn, loved each other, moved to different places, and stayed in touch. What right did I have to accept that they were somehow less married than my wife and I? So my opinion changed out of respect for them. In this case a long term employee and co-founder of a company is forced out of a job because of a perfectly legal political donation he made a number of years ago. The donation is so objectionable to a group of opposite minded people that his on-the-job record by all accounts impeccable is irrelevant to the outcome. Out comes the pitchfork waving mob and a career is blown out of the water.

Using similar logic, a CEO who makes a donation to a pro-life campaign or candidate is fair game. I use abortion only to illustrate the logic. Other issues can have the same effect. I have a problem with pitchfork waving mobs, especially when they affect the lives of people whose sole offense is to disagree with them. Diversity requires respect and is a hollow term when it only includes those who agree with you. So until the LBGT community learns that, count me out. Again, thank you all for the enlightening discussion.

Now I have to apologize to our friends, who deserve better than this from me. Fair enough. In the specific case of protesting against Mr. Eich, then, what would be some ways of doing it that you would deem proper? They would become a proper target of scrutiny if he had a history of individual bigotry, but see above. You can focus your activism as support for a particular cause or goal; emphasizing a philosophical justification and providing sound argument. Demonizing your opposition and intentionally inflicting harm as intimidation is one of the first steps on the road to transitioning from bully to despot.

Your thoughtful post led me to discover my main objection to what is going on here. Which may or may not be a useful tactic, but is certainly one of the edge cases when thinking about the NAP. I have not done this. It is an appropriate response whether we attribute the scalping to all gays or only a fraction of them, because it has the specific goal of deterring a very specific kind of thuggery through counter-action with an obvious and just relation to the thuggery. An engaging defense of political and religious tolerance , presented as an OKCupid profile.

And this is why I likened it to punishing a platoon. The response may be just in some grand scheme of things, but is not necessarily just to individuals. I think this is an example. Why do you think your choice of policy will have the specific effects you want, and not lead to some sort of blowback? You may be underestimating the amount of work which has gone into anti-racism and related causes. Because targeted action driving the net payoff from misbehavior to zero is a response that is easy for people to understand.

I guess the problem is how you define hateful. I have basically a relativist attitude to it Eric and others who like to stick to philosophically reasoned principles will probably dislike it : people who come up with NEW ideas how to screw with others unnecessarily are hateful. People who like to stick to OLD, traditional ways of screwing with others are not hateful.

They are just traditionalists. They just like to keep things the way they are used to them. Yes, even if serfdom and slavery were around, I would not define people who defend them as hateful. Of course if someone wanted to re-introduce it, that would be hateful. It matters which side is established and which side is not. My primary reasoning is that people get used to everything. They find ways to live with things, given enough time. The serf will find a way to cheat the landlord out of part of the taxes, the slave will find a way to slack off, gays adopt each other instead of marrying.

At the end of the day given long enough time, people adapt to anything and do not feel a lot of pain. This — the lack of a lot of pain — means defending something old a traditional may be stupid or ethically wrong, but not actively hateful or evil-intending. An important ingredigent to hatred — wishing the pain and distress of the Other — is missing, due to adaptation and coping. Now of course when people want to introduce something new like that, that is hateful, because that is obviously going to cause a lot of distress and pain before people adapt.

Generally when people want to hurt others, they have to come up with new and new ways of it, because humans are very good at adaptation. This is why we can assume people who just want to preserve old, traditional ways of screwing with others, they are probably not hateful, just traditionalists. You get it. This should be really the starting point of the discussion, not something encountered halfway through the thread.

The problem is of course that given that the ultimate purpose of every procedure is to prevent large-scale evil from happening, they can and ought to be broken in the presence of large-scale evil. I am perfectly willing to break any procedure, custom, or law to prevent e. This, of course, means that you can call anything — in this case, banning same-sex marriage — a large-scale evil and get away with breaking procedure. Or in other words, what procedure can work as a meta-procedure, generating the cases where the substantive evil is big enough to allow breaking procedures?

Yes it even includes serfdom or slavery. So one half of the meta-procedure would be that you are not allowed to break procedure for anything new, for the sake of any innovation. Changes can only be made procedurally. Breaking procedure is only allowed for counter-acting some kinds of changes. Generally procedure-breaking is only allowed for preventing the introduction of new evils, and for ushering old evils out it is not. Of course this still leaves the question open in what cases — but clearly not all — are the traditionalists allowed to break procedure? So far we have only established that the anti-traditionalists are never allowed, but we cannot really decide exaclty in which cases are the traditionalists allowed to.

I cannot answer that. Interesting that although I am not part of the Anglo-American political tradition, external observation suggests me that this political tradition roughly worked like this.

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For example revolutions in the Anglosphere were generally meant to topple kings who violated the old, traditional rights of subjects. They were not meant to introduce new rights. So the king broke procedure with an innovation, and the revolutionaries broke procedure in defense of tradition. There seems to be a lesson in it. It seems to work. You usually come across as more rational, Eric. You must understand that the response to your bully bullying will be bully bully bullying.

A bull or tiger has more options. Try to inflict pain to the fully grown bull. Se whether it will turn away from you. Upon second thought… there are some evils people cannot adapt to no matter how old and established they are, because they violate some basic human instinct. So, one part of the meta-procedure should be that those who are up against an established, traditional evil are allowed to break procedure if said evil is non-adaptable chattel slavery that breaks families apart, forms of legal killing etc. Anti-sodomy seems non-adaptable you cannot really get used to what basically amounts to forced celibacy , lack of marriage equality seems adaptable.

While in office, Cannon voted yes for a ban gay adoptions, voted no on a bill to prohibit job discrimination based on sexual orientation, and supported a Constitutional amendment banning gay marriage nationwide. Because they have the moral high ground. Seriously, I spend a lot of time thinking about this. It seems the people rallying the mob is often doing so in an effort to keep from getting trampled by the mob by finding a different victim. Being against gay marriage does not necessarily imply being against gays.

In earlier posts, you suggested that Eich is being pilloried for nothing but his private thoughts. But his donation actually went beyond private thinking in two ways. Consequently, I would argue, his donation is properly in the public record and fair game for criticism by the public. Donating to a candidate is very different from donating for a specific cause, because in our two-party system each candidate supports many things that you may agree or disagree with, and you have to choose how much each is worth to you and where the balance is.

Maybe he supported that candidate because his opponent wanted to ban guns. You can donate to a candidate without knowing or caring about their stance on gay marriage or gun control or whatever, because there are lots of other reasons you might be donating to them. The same cannot be said for prop 8.

The sad part is how life in the US is increasingly coming to resemble life in the old Soviet bloc, where they name a street after you one day, then chase you down it the next…. Regardless, the effect is the same. If the crime Eich committed was donating to a cause that harmed the civil liberties of US citizens, then donating to a politician who does the same is the exact same crime. If voting and contributing to political causes are actions that can and do cause harm, then it is incumbent upon every voter to be fully aware, cognizant and if not accepting then resigned to the harm that their votes and contributions will cause and the consequences thereof.

Where does the gleichshaltung stop? People are not flatworms. Punishment works some of the time, but using it, or even imagining it, seems to have a strong hypnotic effect of assuming it will work out exactly as planned. Well spotted, Winter. The LGBT-activist crowd is well on its way towards making me an intractable enemy with the Eich scalping.

Oh, no. An assertion is not an explanation. Why do you not consider spending money to be an action? There is a difference between holding an opinion, publicly expressing it, and taking action in furtherance of forcing it on others. Most people believe that, as a universal standard, the first two are okay and the third is not. You seem to believe that all three are okay for Eich, and that even the second is not okay for gay rights activists.

I have been consistent about this see my post on the Duck Dynasty brouhaha and it is a standard that I would apply anywhere on the political spectrum. Some will take away the lesson our esteemed host desires to teach, others will simply take it as a cautionary tale about casting the first stone, and a few timid ones will take the whole episode as confirmation bias about not getting involved at all.

It may have started out as an attempted kafkatrap, but if so it quickly lost that meaning. Nowadays, at least in my experience, homophobia is universally understood as a sin rather than an illness. Indeed, the PC for at least the past 30 years has been never to refer to a person with an illness or disability with a noun derived from that condition, e. A person accused of it must immediately abase himself. I have a pet theory that much of the PC stuff comes from people who have really serious self esteem issues and are secretly afraid that others may see them as inferior.

Therefore, they really want to wall off any possibility that anyone could ever be seen inferior as others. However, I am not sure how to test or prove it. So as long as the money might be used in the furtherance of some other action, contributing to causes which harm civil rights does not cause harm?

What is the fundamental difference between publicly expressing an opinion on a political topic and taking action in furtherance of forcing it on others? Are not both actions taken in the hope of getting that law to pass? Had he stayed under the minimum dollar amount required for public disclosure, would had his support been discovered some other way that still be grounds for ousting him as CEO?

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Had instead of contributing to a cause he purchased to air a radio commercial in support of prop 8, would that be grounds to oust him? First: Not my views. In order for OKCupid to be consistent with their own message and world views, yes.

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Like most things in politics the reality is there are degrees separating these things, and not everything is black and white. Is it wrong to say that your political opponents must publicly recant their political views or you will hound them and their employers, stirring up a media shit storm that ultimately may lead to their termination? In my opinion yes. TM — This is complicated by the fact that not everyone agrees that gay rights should be considered a mere matter of politics, with no moral implication of one side being right and the other being wrong in the same way there would if someone were advocating, for instance, a return of slavery.

Perhaps even someone advocating the return of slavery should be largely insulated as a matter of standards, not as a matter of law from reprisal in otherwise unrelated areas. Less than 50 years ago, corporate CEOs expressing support for gay marriage would likely find themselves run out as Eich was today. Partly, but those who use the term routinely equivocate, particularly by first defining it as any opposition for any reason to state-sanctioned same-sex marriage, labeling individuals with politically incorrect opinions with it, and then swapping in an unstated definition akin to clinical phobia in order to claim that any such opinions are rabidly irrational and dismissable if not requiring immediate suppression.

It would not have been right because they were not wrong. The fact that the majority of society in their time is in the wrong does not alter this. If anything the unstated definition is more akin to racism or sexism. I relayed personal observations. OTOH, I might vote yes for a law that eliminates all marriage laws from the books. And what about less clear politics? Who will be on the right side of the up and coming debate over mandatory vaccinations? How about the recent Supreme Court decision with regards to political contributions?

For example,. Principled arguments against it survive from the classical Greeks and early Roman Empire. It is also worth noting that chattel slavery died out very early in several European societies. Thralldom was abolished in Iceland around the same time chattel slavery was fading out in the British Isles, around CE. Most of the Norse world had followed suit by Assuming an absolute morality outside of society, how confident are people that the ouster of Mr. Are they willing to stake their own future careers on it?

Why do you think voting against removing a restriction supports the general position of the government having no business interfering? He might think so because state involvement in marriage creates legal burdens on, for example, employers. Gay-marriage laws can not unreasonably be interpreted as uncompensated regulatory takings.

The legal issue is settled in California, so this was simply revenge and retribution by the victors against someone for having supported the losing side of a political dispute. Because I subscribe to the belief that the appropriate way to deal with unjust laws is to remove the unjust law, not introduce new ones that incompletely address the issue.

And the introduction of such a law then simply pushes the issue down the road, so that in 20 or 30 years we can battle out in courts whether man-woman-woman is a valid marriage and whether woman-man-man is valid and whether man-sex automoton is valid. Once the government has that authority, it will be difficult to take it away, and it will be used as justification to remove more rights.

One need only look at the continuing war on cigarette smokers to see this is true, but one can also look at as I mentioned before the up coming discussions on anti-vaccination. In addition to the above, esr is also correct. A law that defines a term legally then imposes that legal view on entities which may or may not subscribe to that same view.

It will happen because at some point, the legal definition and the institutional definition of the words will come into conflict and in these cases the law almost always wins. Something like this has already happened. I should have been clearer. Good times…. Milhouse: Indeed, the PC for at least the past 30 years has been never to refer to a person with an illness or disability with a noun derived from that condition, e.

Interesting that you should say this; there is actually now, and has for at least several years, been some pushback against this from e. The explanation is simple. Scare quotes for reasons that should soon become obvious. Why, it might even be removed from you entirely, without really modifying the core of who you are! Many autistic people reject that view, instead espousing the quite reasonable from a neurological perspective position that autism fundamentally shapes who they are, and is inseparable from their identity.

Compare, e. But there it is. Sexual orientation already being a protected class in California, this is only true in so far as it prevents an end run against that. If there were no state involvement in marriage, companies would not be able to discriminate against gay married couples vs straight ones, because it would by default be a discrimination against them as gay people.

And we may never know, because in my experience, most physical disability umbrage is taken on behalf of others. Allowing anyone to marry whomever they choose is not a taking because it does not cost the company any more than if they were to marry whoever the company is okay with them marrying — it costs the company no more to have an employee in a gay marriage than one in a sham or real, for that matter straight marriage. I suspect this is correct. I did. But you never explained it. In America, political traditions and First-Amendment caselaw treat political contributions as akin to political speech — which in turn is inherently public.

See, for example, the recently-decided case of McCutchen v. Feder PDF and the precedents it cites. Other countries might treat them as akin to voting instead; a pledge to respect privacy could make sense there. Thanks for making me think! Similar disagreements arise around whether being Jewish gives you sufficient standing to make jokes about Jewish people. This can then be broken down into the case where the joke can be construed as being insulting to Jews or not.

The fact of the matter is, some people are offended by any given piece of humor, and others are not. For instance, as a Jewish person, I might bristle at gentiles making Jew jokes, but the notion that being Jewish makes me immune to the possibility of offending other Jews is not really accurate.

Meanwhile, whether or not my joke offends any actual Jewish people is the same in both scenarios…. Many important and protected forms of political behavior have elements of both. Carrying a sign at a demonstration. Donating money to a candidate. Canvassing door to door. Nonviolent civil disobedience. The very fact that this occurs should tell you that the opinion-action distinction is not and cannot be fundamental. Or is that too off-topic? There is probably some fancy jargon for this distinction Eric, do you know any? One is simply it is better to say what you are for rather than what you are against.

The other is to emphasise that gay marriage is not specifically being targeted, marriages involving space aliens, multiple people, farm animals, time limits or prepubescent children are all also invalid but there is no credible campaign for any of these at this time. We can change what people do or think with legislation, or with various forms of persuasion and such. My core question, I suppose, is this. Two men, or two women, want to inform the government that they are in a certain sort of relationship with each other, and they want the government to recognize this state of affairs, and they would like this governmental recognition to take the same form as the recognition a man-and-woman couple would receive in an analogous circumstance assorted financial and legal benefits and consequences.

Heck, what does that even mean? What exactly does the former mean such that it leads to the latter, and how does it lead to the latter? Given the reports of his behavior at Mozilla you are not entitled to presume it. Because acknowledging that fact that homosexuality is inferior and consequently should be accorded only second-class status is heresy.

Now suppose a state gives doctors a special number plate for their cars, so they can park in no-parking zones when necessary. The doctors would be upset about that. But to call all those people doctors would damage the brand for the real doctors. Which, I suppose, speaks for the quality of the blogs I usually frequent. Or, which specific, unambiguously observable state of affairs do you think should obtain? And the same qualifier. Otherwise, saying the state is desirable is a moot point. Said Achmiz you have basically just written off the whole premise of mediatized representative democracy as it works in the 21st century.

Which is, to win votes by pretending to feel good about stuff the electorate feels good about, and identify with stuff the electorate likes to identify with. And actual politics, as in, operations and law-making and stuff are kind of optional. Shenpen: you have basically just written off the whole premise of mediatized representative democracy as it works in the 21st century.

This is really a bad approach for a multitude of reasons. One, pursuing the abstact, philosophical ideal of equality should not really be the purpose of legislation, it should be more pragmatic. Two, pushing to pursue this abstact goal sounds too much like using legislation to prop up fragile egos of people who are afraid they may be seen as inferior to others, again, not really the correct tool for the job.

Three, pursuing any abstract philosophy with legislation is problematic in and of itself, so it would be better not to do it at all, but if you really need one, equality is a particularly poor choice, really the idea that nobody is ever better than anyone else is not really a noble ideal at all, it is not a worthy candidate for an abstract philosophical goal.

You would be better off if your philosophical goal would be the not necessary equal, but basic minimum guaranteed level of dignity or liberty for all, while keeping the top end open. A guaranteed minimum of human dignity serves basically the same philosophical purposes as equal rights without really pushing the idea that nobody is ever better than anyone else. Four, the equality of rights seems to be orthogonal to their utilitarian well-configuredness.

Sometimes you want to given non-equal, read, more rights to for example people who are more vulnerable. See Rawls for a left-wing discussion of that. And of course right-wing examples are plenty. Five, and this is the most pragmatic, equal rights to different things i. Equal rights are fairly simple and functional as long as they relate to the exactly same thing regardless of whether you like it or not.

So the equal right of straight or gay people to marry someone from the opposite sex is at least simple and functional, as it is equal rights to the same things, the different is that one group happens to like it and the other not. But once you redefine it as equal rights to that particular thing you happen to like, even when it is different and not the same thing, it gets problematic.

For example you could say everybody has equal rights to the very same public education curriculum, but once you would say every religious or ethnic group should have equal rights to a customized public education according to their preferences, you will quickly run into problematic stuff. I admit this is a cool sounding slogan. It makes one sound magnanimous, just and noble.

I guess if I was a young college student I could get a lot of popularity points for saying stuff like this. However, under closer intellectual scrutiny it has more leaks than a wickerwork canoe. Really at least in intellectual circles this approach should be scrapped. Can you start a family with the person you want and get the same legal status or not? It can if your partner is of a different sex.

All kind of hypothetical cases which would include polygamy or involving non-humans are a non-sequitur. I do not see what is so abstract about this question. These are real people who want to have recognition under real laws which have real consequences, financial and otherwise. And other people who want to deny them this recognition. Note that these other people do not have a stake in the supposed marriage: There is absolutely no material difference to all these objectors whether Alice marries Bob or Clair.

My point is not about whether GM is a good idea or not but about whether arguments from equal rights are a good argument or not. The question of whether same or different sex is considered the same thing or different thing, so valid for an equal rights argument or not, largely depends on your evaluation of whether it is really just about a form of public affirmation of love or some other things as well. I mean at the very least those who like the equal rights argument should present some decent historical argument that marriage evolved through history, first it was about an alliance between families where consent did not matter, then it was a free choice and consent based and romantic love appeared, but still had a reproductionary focus as infertile marriages were still annulled, and then largely and slowly it evolved towarsd a form of public announcing of romantic love where the reproductive focus got slowly phased out and infertile marriages or voluntary childlessness got finally accepted.

This historical narrative COULD be made a decent argument and it COULD be used to support an equal-rights argument, if it was demonstrated that its focus changed through history, and this it was changed to what exactly the rights apply. Marriage had two main objectives: Providing financial support for children and women. Childnessless was accepted partly to ensure the women were still cared for. Care for the women is slowly eroding too as an incentive. Meanwhile, same-sex couples get children to care for too.

As has been said before, most of the protections of marriage can be got under contract law. The crucial points are inheritance and children. Then what opinion do you imagine he was attacked for? The action we are speaking of is a donation to an organization dedicated to taking rights away from gay people. He was attacked to be made a bloody example of in order to intimidate others. The things that prop 8 enables are, themselves, discriminatory behavior. Its sole purpose is to allow people to disguise unacceptable discrimination against gay people as acceptable discrimination against unmarried people.

In what sense is campaigning for a law to legalize discrimination not itself discriminatory behavior? If someone who had personally tried to prevent me from marrying became a CEO in a company, I would stop all business with them too. Maybe you would not, but I would take this personal.

We spent two months building them together. Probably true.