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  #1    
Old May 19th, 2012, 01:23 AM
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In this ~politically correct~ world we'd like to say that everyone, no matter what their religion, sexuality, occupation, family, passtimes, etc., is still as equal and as valuable as any other individual. But how true is this? Is someone with a happy family and a secure, well-paid job 'better' than someone with neither? Can you look at the man that sits on his sofa doing nothing but drinking and playing video games all day and say that he's equal to someone who goes out, does their job, and makes the money they need for a comfortable and enjoyable life? What does "equal", "better" or "worse" even mean in this context?

Discuss.
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  #2    
Old May 19th, 2012, 02:49 AM
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What I will say is that generally speaking, people should be treated equally and fairly. However, this is a world where one needs to have strength to survive. The strong will thrive and the weak are swept aside. In education, those with good grades have access to financial aid and greater opportunities. In employment, the employers discriminate based on skills and experience as well as personality and aptitude. In these kind of situations, true equality does not exist.

As far as the value of human life is concerned, one way I look at it is this. "What do you do to contribute to this world?" The person who sits on his ass all day doing nothing and the person who contributes to this world are equal in terms of how they should be treated, however they are not equal in terms of overall value (not taking anything else into account).

In essence, equality can be looked from two different angles.

1) How people should be treated.

2) How people should be valued.

1 is (should be) consistent whereas 2 varies depending on circumstances.
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Old May 19th, 2012, 03:30 AM
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I'd like to think so, yes. Echoing what Drakow said, there's about two perspectives you can go ask this question. Treatment, or value. The second doesn't seem right when you wish for equality, because people can be seen to have earned enough from his own efforts to be considered more successful than a couch potato. So I agree, people aren't equal in value.

He's also right in saying people should be treated equally. But even though I'd also want to see human treatment as equal, the truth is, wouldn't the common crowd base their treatment on how they see a person's value in itself, I mean by nature? Even if we all have our own rights, and if one doesn't accept and take responsibility to earn his own by doing repulsive actions or none at all, then treating that person equal to a more "deserving" individual could be arguable especially when emotion kicks in. People can be personal, and I wouldn't just push away the thought that some just deserve being seen more highly compared others, I see some sort of point in that thinking.

Of course, it may be morally accepted to treat everyone fairly, but this is often times overlooked when personal matters come in. Even though I'd rather take personal issues away from this context, this often creates its own factor when you'd look at equality. Unless you want to rid humans of emotion from judging, but then you'd have another problem.
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Old May 19th, 2012, 10:21 AM
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I'd like to think so, yes. Echoing what Drakow said, there's about two perspectives you can go ask this question. Treatment, or value. The second doesn't seem right when you wish for equality, because people can be seen to have earned enough from his own efforts to be considered more successful than a couch potato. So I agree, people aren't equal in value.
I look at this in the opposite way.

I generally believe that everyone has equal value as a human being. To think otherwise, to say that people aren't equal, invites in the idea of "valuable to me" or "equal to me" where not everyone has the same value and you start to see some people as below you.

I think as far as treatment goes we should follow the idea of "from each according to his ability, to each according to his needs." In other words, a person who uses a wheelchair to get around needs buildings to accommodate them with ramps, etc. while an able-bodied person doesn't but we make sure to have the ramps there for the person who needs it so that they can be on a more equal level with other people. The person who can walk doesn't need anything to help them. Same with illness. We help the sick and maybe someone has an expensive to treat disease, but we shouldn't stop and ask "Are you worth taking the time to heal and cure?"

People are free to make their own decisions, of course, and someone who acts in a way that is detrimental to others (criminals, etc.) should forfeit some of their equality, but as a society we have to make sure everyone gets a chance to make those decisions. It wouldn't be fair to judge someone who came from a poverty-stricken life and turned to crime for lack of any other choices.

Obviously this is all ideal talk, but I think we should be moving toward this as much as we can.
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Old May 19th, 2012, 11:42 PM
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Wouldn't that be just peachy? To have a world where nobody is different from one another?

..Nnno. That'd inevitably suck actually. Equality... what does that even mean anymore? You use the correct definition of the word and you're told you're too literal. You ask for the someone else's definition and all people can give you is a list of very specific things people aren't allowed to do. I hate the term equality--For becoming a meaningless label that masquerades around as if it weren't one.

We can only bully and oppress the opinions of those we disagree with so hard before the illusion of justice caves in on itself and the delusional start to see reality and abandon the cause to quell the guilt that threatens to devour their hearts and minds.

There will always be those of us that believe that one should be entitled to the sweat of their brow, and there will always be those that believe that we should be required to donate that sweat to a greater good. Here in America, we have a saying; we hold this truth to be self-evident, that all men are created equal. Keyword 'created'

That is to say, one is created equal, but one does not remain equal. One advances their position by proving their worth or they are left behind. Unfortunately this does not apply simply to one's mark on the world but also to social situations. By our very nature it is impossible to separate our view of someone's value from how we treat them. Is that perfect? Maybe not. Everything about our culture from monogamy to the punishment of criminals show that we do not treat all people as equals is a living testament to the fact that we treat people differently based on perceived value. It's, for better or worse, the reality and something we simply cannot change.

That being said, things that are present upon your 'creation' are not a factor in your value. Or at least, that's the rule. You see, there's an exception there too where nature makes this impossible. As individuals, we are doomed to be unable to value males and females the same. It's chemically built into our brains, and so long as we maintain our basic reproductive instincts we will be unable to ignore sex completely on some level. Me? I actually don't think this is necessarily a bad thing. Equal treatment and opportunity in the workplace, professionally, is possible, and that's the /huge/ important part. The rest is individual value, and I dare say we as individuals are ready to work out how we feel about men and women on a strictly personal basis without the government interfering. I for one am sick and tired of having sexual ideals forced upon myself and my friends, as if all women and all men are supposed to be the same or even remotely consistent. Individual variety is far too powerful of a factor for such things.

In addition, while ideally every person deserves a basic level of respect, care, and trust, we cannot force a person to hold such ideals. It is not our right, nor was it ever, to attempt to make an opinion illegal or otherwise enforce an opinion's acceptance or denial via threat of punishment beyond that which is social.

You may say it's wrong to hate, but I'd say it's a lot worse to tell someone they are not allowed to hate. I hear far more intolerance from those who claim to be fighting for the greater good than I do from those who think less of others. As usual however, the majority manages to be misguided in their passion. Even as they brutally oppress their fellow person they will claim to be fighting for 'equality', and may even claim to be fighting for 'freedom' to be oneself while they're at it. In reality, these are shallow labels, the actual definition of the word often completely lost or downright contradicted by the cause itself.

...I'm depressingly calculating.

Anyway, one's value is ultimately decided on an individual basis. Because of this, because of individualism, equality in any sense of the word is impossible and there needs to be a point where we stop trying to achieve it. But hey, if we're just looking to improve the life conditions for those in need we've been doing a pretty good job of that. Since, from what I gather that's what the real intent of the fight for 'equality' has ever been.
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Old May 20th, 2012, 05:34 AM
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I couldn't care any less about who is worth more or less.
Anyone who bothers with who is worth more or less is probably worthless himself.

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I've read all that. What's your point?

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I for one am sick and tired of having sexual ideals forced upon myself and my friends, as if all women and all men are supposed to be the same or even remotely consistent.
Perhaps it might be a bit intrusive, but can you please explain what you mean by "sexual ideals"? You can message it privately for me if you don't want to post it publicly.
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Old May 20th, 2012, 03:58 PM
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@Calipornia: I cannot explain "that" until you define what "that" is.

...I guess I can give an example of the common 'sexual ideals' that are forced down everyone and their uncle's throat whilst masquerading as justice.

"Men and women are/should be equals" - This is the one I hear most, in that it completely ignores individuality in favor of a broad, idealistic generalization. Any and all evidence suggesting the obvious (See: Men and women are not interchangeable.) is passed off as sexism, completely ignoring the fact that acknowledging the differences between two things is not automatically a conspiracy to establish the dominance of one over the other.

I think the reason I hate it the most, though, is the fact that it implies that people should rebel against a specific mold regardless of whom they are as a person. As if there was anything wrong about the way things were before, fundamentally, besides the fact that it /also/ ignored individuality. That being said, these ideals ultimately result in the exact same kind of evil they should've been fighting only victimizing a different category of individuals.
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Old May 20th, 2012, 04:02 PM
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Human civilization is founded upon inequality, if you think about how we've come as a species since about 8,000 B.C.E. Doesn't mean that we can't work to right societal wrongs and fight that inequality, though.
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Old May 20th, 2012, 05:19 PM
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Equality is a tricky word surely, but I still have a few certain things I regard as discrimination or social injustice, and I prefer they not happen. I also believe that sex, gender, sexuality, race, colour, religion, etc. are not on their own reasons for inequality even in situations where inequality is tolerable or necessary.

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Originally Posted by PkMnTrainer Yellow View Post
@Calipornia: I cannot explain "that" until you define what "that" is.

...I guess I can give an example of the common 'sexual ideals' that are forced down everyone and their uncle's throat whilst masquerading as justice.

"Men and women are/should be equals" - This is the one I hear most, in that it completely ignores individuality in favor of a broad, idealistic generalization. Any and all evidence suggesting the obvious (See: Men and women are not interchangeable.) is passed off as sexism, completely ignoring the fact that acknowledging the differences between two things is not automatically a conspiracy to establish the dominance of one over the other.

I think the reason I hate it the most, though, is the fact that it implies that people should rebel against a specific mold regardless of whom they are as a person. As if there was anything wrong about the way things were before, fundamentally, besides the fact that it /also/ ignored individuality. That being said, these ideals ultimately result in the exact same kind of evil they should've been fighting only victimizing a different category of individuals.
You're being so vague (no offense) that I can't really form a complete idea of what you're talking about, but assuming you're talking about gender rights activism, the idea is don't let gender define who you are as a person. It's not necessary to rebel against gender roles, but you don't need to follow them either. And most campaigns that I can speak for are simply trying to remove laws that create a double standard or disadvantage someone simply on the basis of sex/gender. Not outlaw the distinction entirely.
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Old May 20th, 2012, 07:17 PM
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the idea is don't let gender define who you are as a person. It's not necessary to rebel against gender roles, but you don't need to follow them either. And most campaigns that I can speak for are simply trying to remove laws that create a double standard or disadvantage someone simply on the basis of sex/gender. Not outlaw the distinction entirely.
...One's gender is a significant part of their personality. It's a form of self-identity and individualism. One doesn't really have a choice in whether it defines them or not because even the 'rejection' of gender is still effectively a gender. Of course if you meant to say sex that would be a completely different story.

The problem is that this is really a case of not being able to have one's cake and eat it too. Either let people decide their gender on their own, or keep killing double standards with prejudice. One can't really have both. When one goes around telling people it's dumb that men are expected to hold a door for a woman and not the other way around, they are in fact bullying people with traditional genders into rebelling.

A man's gender decides whether he feels like he should be holding that door, and a woman's gender decides whether she appreciates the chivalry. If they both match up nicely, there's nothing wrong with that, and if they don't there's nothing wrong with that either. Not all double standards need to be eradicated.

It's reasonable to say that men and women should be treated equally on a professional level, like in the workplace and other such situations that could be described as professional such as school. However, social situations are different.

...It's a pretty lame time to be a person with a 'traditional' gender, and it has absolutely everything to do with a social backlash due to perceived oppression via misleading propaganda and nothing to do with a shift towards equality. =/
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Old May 21st, 2012, 02:44 AM
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@Calipornia: I cannot explain "that" until you define what "that" is.

Your whole post.
Quote:
...I guess I can give an example of the common 'sexual ideals' that are forced down everyone and their uncle's throat whilst masquerading as justice.

"Men and women are/should be equals" - This is the one I hear most, in that it completely ignores individuality in favor of a broad, idealistic generalization. Any and all evidence suggesting the obvious (See: Men and women are not interchangeable.) is passed off as sexism, completely ignoring the fact that acknowledging the differences between two things is not automatically a conspiracy to establish the dominance of one over the other.
Why do you care?
People who say that have one-dimensional thinking ability. They will not be able to hold a rational discussion with you about that. In your place I would have given no value to their opinion. In fact I'm in doubt they actually formed an opinion on the matter, other than what they think is "right".
Quote:
I think the reason I hate it the most, though, is the fact that it implies that people should rebel against a specific mold regardless of whom they are as a person. As if there was anything wrong about the way things were before, fundamentally, besides the fact that it /also/ ignored individuality. That being said, these ideals ultimately result in the exact same kind of evil they should've been fighting only victimizing a different category of individuals.
I've seen you use the word individuality a few times. It looks like you're a bit obsessed with it.
Care to explain what you mean?
Quote:
...It's a pretty lame time to be a person with a 'traditional' gender, and it has absolutely everything to do with a social backlash due to perceived oppression via misleading propaganda and nothing to do with a shift towards equality. =/
So if I don't open the door for you, that's the end of our date?
I was raised in a traditional home, but I've always been told I'm a bit too "rational".
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Old May 21st, 2012, 03:34 AM
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Why do you care?
Because the people that hold these sorts of opinions currently control the public agenda and that's kind of a big deal?

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I've seen you use the word individuality a few times. It looks like you're a bit obsessed with it.
Care to explain what you mean?
Individuality is the key to anything truly resembling /actual/ equality on any level. When we stop defending things and/or people with prejudice because it sounds right and start defending people on an individual level things can only get better.

Basically, all these generalizations we make instead of handling things on a more individual basis is an unacceptably lazy approach to a problem that will in fact cause serious issues at times.
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Old May 21st, 2012, 04:08 AM
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[FONT="Franklin Gothic Medium"][SIZE="3"]

Because the people that hold these sorts of opinions currently control the public agenda and that's kind of a big deal?
I see. And what can you do about that?
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Old May 21st, 2012, 09:58 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by PkMnTrainer Yellow View Post
Individuality is the key to anything truly resembling /actual/ equality on any level. When we stop defending things and/or people with prejudice because it sounds right and start defending people on an individual level things can only get better..
I don't know how you mean. Individuality is what I've been defending from the get-go. When I see a woman, I see not a female individual, but an individual; when I see a man, I see not a male individual, but an individual. That's what I mean when I say gender roles are unnecessary to regard with any real respect. Follow them if you like, if you think they're fun or something, but they're not anything special really and 90% of them make no sense (yes this statistic came out of nowhere). I'm a woman and I hold the door open for everyone I see. Because in my eyes a person's gender doesn't matter and it's simply polite for me to hold a door open; so I do.
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...One's gender is a significant part of their personality. It's a form of self-identity and individualism.
That is your opinion. My opinion on the matter is, "well, it's not, really." As it happens all we can have on the matter is opinions because we have no real way of knowing if a person's gender determines who they are because gender identity is a subjective and indeterminant thing. A lot of people say their gender changes constantly or that their gender is different from their sex but we can't reallly determine that in any definite way. The people in question just have to believe it themselves.
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It lies still in the same pose for days in its web,
waiting for its unsuspecting prey to wander close.

Abilities: Swarm or Insomnia or Sniper
Moves: String Shot, Scary Face, Shadow Sneak, Pin Missile
Locations: Routes 2, 30, 31, 37 (night)
Cry
Other names:

jp: イトマル (Itomaru)
de: Webarak
fr: Mimigal
ko: 페이검 (Pe'igǒm)

Last edited by Magdalena~; May 21st, 2012 at 10:22 AM.
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Old May 21st, 2012, 01:27 PM
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@Magdalena: It's all nice to say you defend individuality, but if you then turn your back and start saying that gender roles and acknowledging someone's sex are dumb/nonsensical then I'm inclined not to believe you. That's not defending individuality, that would be oppressing other people's freedom in favor of your ideals

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we have no real way of knowing if a person's gender determines who they are because gender identity is a subjective and indeterminant thing.
...This doesn't really make sense. Gender is self-expression in and of itself. Gender does not determine who someone is; it is who someone is. It is determined based on the individual qualities of any given person as well as that person's environment. Gender is no different than one's personality. People change over time, and so can their gender. Gender is only subjective to the individual whose gender is in question, and no one else.

That being said, it is not our job to say "Your gender / gender expectations (see: what causes gender roles) are illogical/unnecessary/superficial/dumb". That's a matter of personal taste and not objective fact. After all this is just social interaction we're talking about. We made a lot of good progress in improving our ability to be professional, but right now, with a few exceptions, we're really going overkill on the feminism and that's bad if our goal is to support individuality.
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Old May 21st, 2012, 02:41 PM
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Originally Posted by PkMnTrainer Yellow View Post
@Magdalena: It's all nice to say you defend individuality, but if you then turn your back and start saying that gender roles and acknowledging someone's sex are dumb/nonsensical then I'm inclined not to believe you. That's not defending individuality, that would be oppressing other people's freedom in favor of your ideals
Please explain how I am opposing individuality.

Also, I didn't use the words dumb or nonsensical, nor did I actually mention "acknowledging someone's sex". You may however have been talking about this:
Quote:
Originally Posted by Magdalena~ View Post
When I see a woman, I see not a female individual, but an individual; when I see a man, I see not a male individual, but an individual.
I acknowledge their sex, sure, but I still see them simply as people, the same way I see people of different races as simply people, regardless of race. But in any case I direct you to something I said in my first post:
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Originally Posted by Magdalena~ View Post
And most campaigns that I can speak for are simply trying to remove laws that create a double standard or disadvantage someone simply on the basis of sex/gender. Not outlaw the distinction entirely.
To be as specific as possible, I agree with the campaigns in question. I have no problem with distinguishing sex/gender by name; only in discriminating on the basis of it.
Quote:
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...This doesn't really make sense. Gender is self-expression in and of itself. Gender does not determine who someone is; it is who someone is. It is determined based on the individual qualities of any given person as well as that person's environment. Gender is no different than one's personality. People change over time, and so can their gender. Gender is only subjective to the individual whose gender is in question, and no one else.

That being said, it is not our job to say "Your gender / gender expectations (see: what causes gender roles) are illogical/unnecessary/superficial/dumb". That's a matter of personal taste and not objective fact. After all this is just social interaction we're talking about. We made a lot of good progress in improving our ability to be professional, but right now, with a few exceptions, we're really going overkill on the feminism and that's bad if our goal is to support individuality.
You don't have to brief me. I know full well what gender is and how it can change. I just disagree that it's what a person is; I think people are people. What's to say gender roles aren't causing all the supposed 100% statistical differences between the genders? (If there are any 100% statistical differences, which personally I haven't seen.)
And no; I never said they were superficial or illogical or dumb. I do think they're unnecessary, since I've seen way too many examples of people letting gender/sex rule their lives.
Prove to me that all women, or all men, or all transgender/genderqueer/gender fluid/androgyne/bigender people share fundamental similarities that they do not share with other genders, and I will concede to you that gender can be determined objectively and is necessary and perhaps even that it should decide who has what rights/abilities; otherwise, I see gender as something that people are making an unnecessary boundary when it could very well exist without being one.
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#167: Spinarak - The String Spit Pokémon
Bug/Poison ~ Bug eggs
1'08" ~ 18.7lbs ~ 50/50

It lies still in the same pose for days in its web,
waiting for its unsuspecting prey to wander close.

Abilities: Swarm or Insomnia or Sniper
Moves: String Shot, Scary Face, Shadow Sneak, Pin Missile
Locations: Routes 2, 30, 31, 37 (night)
Cry
Other names:

jp: イトマル (Itomaru)
de: Webarak
fr: Mimigal
ko: 페이검 (Pe'igǒm)

Last edited by Magdalena~; May 21st, 2012 at 07:43 PM.
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Old May 22nd, 2012, 10:19 PM
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In this ~politically correct~ world we'd like to say that everyone, no matter what their religion, sexuality, occupation, family, passtimes, etc., is still as equal and as valuable as any other individual. But how true is this? Is someone with a happy family and a secure, well-paid job 'better' than someone with neither? Can you look at the man that sits on his sofa doing nothing but drinking and playing video games all day and say that he's equal to someone who goes out, does their job, and makes the money they need for a comfortable and enjoyable life? What does "equal", "better" or "worse" even mean in this context?

Discuss.
You're suggesting that the value in a human life is only in its contribution to society. Nothing could be further from the truth. Human lives have inherent value. Are you going to tell me your experiences -- your joys, your struggles, your victories and your losses -- that those things don't have meaning, that they don't have value?

We have value merely by virtue of existing. And value in this context isn't exactly a quantifiable thing; I think there's something meaningful in every life. Maybe we can quibble about who made the bigger contribution to the world, but in the end, I think what matters most is how you feel about your own life. If you're happy sitting on the couch playing video games and drinking, so be it; there's certainly value in your own happiness.

Equality on an intellectual level, however, is another story. Suffice it to say that it is my belief that not all opinions are created equally.
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  #18    
Old June 16th, 2012, 01:57 AM
Zappra
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Originally Posted by Razor Leaf View Post
In this ~politically correct~ world we'd like to say that everyone, no matter what their religion, sexuality, occupation, family, passtimes, etc., is still as equal and as valuable as any other individual. But how true is this? Is someone with a happy family and a secure, well-paid job 'better' than someone with neither? Can you look at the man that sits on his sofa doing nothing but drinking and playing video games all day and say that he's equal to someone who goes out, does their job, and makes the money they need for a comfortable and enjoyable life? What does "equal", "better" or "worse" even mean in this context?

Discuss.
In my opinion.I cant say this world is equal. Because if its equal there should be no people suffering from hunger. People with money treated well, compared to those who still need to work hard to earn a single penny for their everyday expenses.
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  #19    
Old June 16th, 2012, 11:05 PM
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People are supposed to be equal. When some are good at their own ways, others happen to excel at something else. But in real life I can't say that this is equal. When someone clearly as a better living environment with more money, friends, better and safer society, how equal can it be? Not only unequal, but unfair.

But still, it depends on the person. Some people surrounded by greens and gold, aren't satisfied with their own lives. On the other hand some poor people are actually having their time of their lives, so there is no specific balance or equality between the two factors. It's all up to us.
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Old June 18th, 2012, 12:28 AM
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I believe in fairness and treating people not known to you, as I believe that looks do not make a person entirely. Saying that, however, in treating people known to me, I will not treat them equally if I think that they do not deserve it.
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  #21    
Old June 20th, 2012, 02:15 PM
Chaos Dragon
 
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Only two things can possibly be naturally egalitarian - life and liberty. Everything else you conceive of as either being or should be egalitarian though it may be noble is merely artificial, and promoting equality by force is nothing more than evil itself.

Ergo, you should treat others as equal to if not better than you treat yourself. But neither expect to be reciprocated, surprised that it won't be reciprocated, nor demand the reciprocation.
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  #22    
Old July 12th, 2012, 09:43 PM
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People aren't equal, not matter how hard we try to correct it. Inequality and *injustice is inherent to human society, we will always have a class system and in that system, men will take whatever they can from other men, including their freedoms and liberties. An unfortunate truth.
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  #23    
Old July 12th, 2012, 09:50 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Razor Leaf View Post
In this ~politically correct~ world we'd like to say that everyone, no matter what their religion, sexuality, occupation, family, passtimes, etc., is still as equal and as valuable as any other individual. But how true is this? Is someone with a happy family and a secure, well-paid job 'better' than someone with neither? Can you look at the man that sits on his sofa doing nothing but drinking and playing video games all day and say that he's equal to someone who goes out, does their job, and makes the money they need for a comfortable and enjoyable life? What does "equal", "better" or "worse" even mean in this context?

Discuss.
Wow the part in bold is so rude... my cousin is a lawyer in Virginia (North) and he drinks soda, plays Xbox (and beats all of the game 100%), but no he is not lazy.

Granted he plays video games A LOT but he has a very good and well paying job. So to say people who play video games excessive are more than likely jobless is very rude.
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So going off of what you said... I suppose if I were to spend the grand majority of my time playing game that means I am a jobless loser?
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  #24    
Old July 13th, 2012, 02:56 AM
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TRIFORCE89
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I'll say groups that we tend to label people with... those are equal. Should be treated equally.

When you get down to the individual level though - no, everyone is not equal
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Old July 13th, 2012, 02:40 PM
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droomph
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As a whole, yes - everyone is equal. But when you come down to it, the harsh reality is that some people are worth less than others. Now, I'm not saying that Snooki (or that druggie you see out by the parking lot begging for money) is less important than the people defusing land mines in Cambodia necessarily, but it's true - some people are of less worth than others.

But that doesn't mean that some people are sentenced to a life of unimportant and banal stuff, no - it means the opposite, that it's what you do with your life that matters how much you're worth. I know it's cliched and an overused phrase, but what you do with that time you have after you're born and before you die is the most important to your worth.

And so, speaking from that perspective, yes, people should have equal rights...but do they? That's hard to speak - it seems like no, but you do hear about these stories of unlikely successful people who grew up poor and delinquent...that makes me question the "unequality" issue - maybe it's necessary for some people to experience the poor life before moving on to the rich?
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