Religion, Reloading and Revoking of Rights

There have been two recent news stories that have had a major impact on the civil liberties of the world citizen.

Both stories were reported in the week of 22.08.10 on RT news.

Religion;

The first story is that this week, French parliament passed a law that will ban muslims from wearing a Burqa or a form of garment in public that covers their face.

This act will have very serious ramifications not just for muslims, but for all people world-wide.

France has been able to dictate what its citizens can and can not wear.

Apart for the obvious “next step, fashion police” jokes that immediately spring to mind, we also have the implications relating to the practicing of religious beliefs, and the display of religious icons in the public domain.

How far should our governments be allowed to dictate how our beliefs are displayed in public?

What are the chances that monks from the catholic church will not be asked to remove their hoods when walking from cloister to cloister? And if you think that does not affect you, what is to stop governments passing a law that prohibits you from covering or shielding your face from cctv cameras by the use of baseball caps, hoodies, or even sunglasses.

The French government have already got away with banning Burqas in all schools and colleges through the separation of religion and state laws, and now we see that they have eroded the civil liberties of its poorest and disenfranchised citizens but passing this law that panders to fear and loathing of a religion that it does not fully understand, and refuses to embrace as part of the modern day French culture.

Reloading;

The second story has me torn.

It has come to light that during the Hurricane Katrina disaster in New Orleans, the police went from door to door demanding and when necessarily forcefully removing the guns of the New Orleans residents.

This act left many residents that had decided to stay and defend their homes and property against looters were left defenceless.

The police only collected registered guns, so illegal firearms were still left in the hands of the law breakers and criminals, who continued to use them to rob and loot.

The New Orleans mayor said that the guns were collected in the interest of law and order…and here is where my problems begin.

I do not believe in a society that allows its citizens to wield guns and this includes the United States of America.

You only have to look at the injuries and deaths as a result of gun crime and gun accidents in the US as testimony to that fact.

I believe that the UK model is one that, on the whole, works and you only have to look at the number of gun crime statistics compared to the US, taking into consideration land mass and population to verify that fact.

In fact there was a statistic that stated that the gun crime in the US far surpassed the gun related injuries and deaths in the whole of Europe.

However….The right to bear arms is the second amendment in the American constitution.

This means that they have a legal constitutional right to legally possess firearms, as much as most of us have the right to freedom of speech.

This means that the American government arbitrarily decided to suspend the rights of its citizens in a time of crisis, thus setting a precedent for the future.

These Americans had their civil liberties eroded for the sake of “their own safety”, which should set alarm bells ringing from America to Australia.

Revoking of Rights;

And speaking of Australia, under the Howard government the Aborigines had, not only their civil liberties suspended, but their racial discrimination laws also suspended in order to implement a series of region and skin colour specific acts to “assist” the aboriginals in regulating their finances and reduce crime. Acts that included trespass on Aboriginal land and partition of welfare laws that only applies to Aboriginals and not their white counterparts in exactly the same economic demographic and regional location.

The UK is also not without sin, a few years ago there was a summit of some sort being held in Greenwich, and suddenly we were unable to congregate or peacefully demonstrate.

All too often are our civil liberties being quietly removed and we the people are letting it happen with nothing more than a shrug of the shoulders. Before long the rights and liberties that our foreparents have fought and died for will be eroded away by governments that say that it is gor our “better good”.

We the people should be the counterbalance to the ill intentions of our governments. We the people should be the ones that hold our government to account for the laws and acts that they pass in our name.

What laws effecting and taking away your civil liberties were passed today?

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~ by jeditopcat on 1 September, 2010.

 
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