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Dunenewt

Next US President?

If you could vote in the upcoming US elections, who would you vote for?  

29 members have voted

  1. 1. If you could vote in the upcoming US elections, who would you vote for?

    • John McCain
      8
    • Hillary Clinton
      2
    • Barrack Obama
      14
    • Some left-wing candidate with no chance of winning
      4
    • Some right-wing candidate with no chance of winning
      1


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I think the result on proposition 8 rather demonstrates that the flaws of majority rule are... serious. Perhaps because it's dictated by the easily manipulated and the just plain dim.

The result this time is an unconscionable state of affairs.

Well. Perhaps in 40 years the gays will have their revenge when they vote against equal rights for robots. Yeah, how'd you like that, mechanical minority? Lets see you lobby for the vote from your concentration camps.

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I don't believe for a second that the decision was right, but until anyone else comes up with a better system with democracy there is no better system than majority rule, besides you seem to be extolling a system of oligarchy or monarchy, someone should dictate certain laws.

Otherwise, I agree with Edric0

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"I think the result on proposition 8 rather demonstrates that the flaws of majority rule are... serious"

Can I offer an alternative? Majority rule is not so much flawed as limited. On its own, it's insufficient to guarantee rights, as indeed is any system that humans are applying. We also need to battle for a belief in tolerance, equality and liberation, and for a culture where standing up for those beliefs is not just the preserve of Great Men

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With proposition 8, anyone who donated to it has their name/business publicly known. So now all those businesses are being boycotted. The business owners are now complaining and asking for tolerance on peoples view.

Haha, they hate gays (and made it public by supporting prop8), and now they are losing customers.

El Coyote boycott results in downgraded Yelp reviews

Prop. 8 victors upset by personal attacks

"It's disheartening that he is being singled out," said Lisa West, spokeswoman for the church in the Sacramento area. "We had hoped there would be more tolerance for different viewpoints."

Yah, gays should be tolerant that others want to prevent them from getting married.

Gays should come up with their own marriage type scheme and give a big FU to the system.

In Canada the first legally married gay couple got divorced in about 3 years. There was no law allowing them to get divorced, so that had to be introduced.

Dunno what is so fun about getting married when you have a 45% chance of divorce in 30 years, and if you do get divorced there is like a 10% chance it will happen on year 5.

Obama supporters told not to take Holy Communion

Didn't Obama supporters get the memo? Socialists are not allowed Communion. ;)

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While I would argue that targetting individuals isn't the best way to win friends and influence people, there is a certain satisfaction to be derived from it. Shame for those who suffer for acting in keeping with their convictions, but then they're causing a degree of suffering themselves. I'm sure there's a good scales metaphor somewhere there.

Can I offer an alternative? Majority rule is not so much flawed as limited.

Sure, that works.

Kind of makes one wonder how any system created by man could be immune to corruption by man. Oh wait.

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So should only female/male have marriage certificate given by government, and everyone else (gays, polygamists) have contracts named something else? And if religions wanted to have a ceremony for gays and polygamists they could choose to do so (but their legal certificate would not be a marriage)?

How does the tax system work for say a polygamy of 20 people? As far as I know there is only the marriage and common law, both of which involve only 2 people whom enter a contract.

Maybe gays should have invented a new term for legal contracts between any 2 people, and said screw marriages?

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To avoid confusion, it should be clearly stated that the majority of religions and cultures recognize and define the institution of marriage as the legal and religious contract between one man and one woman.  No one should be denied or barred from this arrangement.* It is the modification of this arrangement that meets with opposition.

I will preface this next piece by saying that I do NOT consider myself as part of any religious community:

I keep hearing hatred, bigotry and discrimination being thrown around regarding the support of proposition 8, but I don

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I just jumped into this one rather late, my apologies, so I may have missed a few good points, but...

It seems to me that there's a flaw in the "No-8" side's strategy. In the run up to the election, I think many people who were against Prop 8 more or less assumed that it would fail by default. California is generally regarded to be one of the most liberal states in the Union (now, not as liberal as Connecticut, oh, the irony), and I think many people who were No-8 assumed that it would not be passed. Hence, they weren't as involved early-on when it came to fundraising and campaigning, and as Mr. Obama has proved, having a lot of money might be a bit more than half the battle. (Not just him, either, I think every single Presidential victor in the last 24-28 years may be the one who raised more money. You tell me what that says.)

Now, the flaw compounds itself. As opposed to campaigning for the No-8 point of view (that gays should marry) as a "Positive Good," they are protesting churches across the state--which carry the not-so-implicit accusation that the churches are perpetrating a "Negative Ill" on society--even though many of that church's members may have voted against Prop-8. They are boycotting firms and businesses that gave to the Yes-8 side in a time of economic hardship. They are forcing individuals in positions of power and influence who gave to Yes-8 either to resign or to make "public apologies." For what? For exercising their right to vote along their personal views? I think the No-8 side is actually making things harder for itself in the future. By taking such a deeply-entrenched, emotional stance, and by acting out so aggressively in response, they actually remind me a great deal of, well... the Republicans from this last election. Who also made the election of John McCain over Barack Obama an emotional/non-rational issue, who also took an extremely aggressive and emotional stance, who also failed to fundraise, campaign and coordinate their efforts effectively.  Perhaps the Republicans shall make a comeback as early as 4 or even 2 years from now, but that will be because they effected a severe reform on their attitudes and activities.

If the No-8 side wants to make sure that Californians have the right to marry people of the same sex, then they should start by respecting the right of Californians to vote their conscience. Don't blame it on some hyper-secret Mormon "conspiracy," don't blame it on black people and Hispanics, and don't blame it on hatred and intolerance. [*EDIT: I just realized how ironic this last item was given the previous two.] Most of the people who voted for Prop-8 did so because it seemed like the best option to them. If that's not the case, and if you really wanted a No-to-8 to succeed, then the answer is education and illumination: show them that No-8 was the better option. The current strategy of, "Wrong answer! Vote again!" is as insulting to Californians who would otherwise support your cause as it is injurious to democracy.

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There is something to be said for voting with one's conscience, and I wouldn't ask anyone to do otherwise. The problem then is not people voting for what they believe in, but that what they believe in is wrong.

Now I'm quite aware that everyone is entitled to their opinion, and nobody should be forced to follow a path that they are not comfortable with, and that everyone's convictions are of equal worth blah blah etc... But lets face it, moral objections that largely stem from fear, xenophobia, or a series of archaic instructions from a civilisation that died out over a thousand years ago have no place in modern society.

What I'm saying essentially is that people should be if not commended then at least respected for following their conscience. And that those consciences need to be shown, gently, the error of their ways. Then we can all live in peace and harmony forever and ever.

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Well said, Wolf. :)

Once again, whether proposition 8 was right or wrong boils down to individual perspective and conviction.  There is no universal, indisputable right or wrong in this case.  Both sides had the opportunity to make their case and then it was left to the people to vote their conscience.

If the losing side isn

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Overconfidence, I think, was the no-vote's mistake. After all, a valid point, if presented badly or not presented enough, is hardly likely to influence people. The way to win confidence is not, my previous post notwithstanding, to belittle the beliefs of others. It is best done by demonstration, rather than argument.

For example, I found this while trawling the interwebs a while back:

A reader writes:

I voted here in San Francisco's Noe Valley neighborhood about two hours ago. It took about an hour to get through the line, and while standing there I was chatting with the 75-year-old retired cop in front of me, and the young 30-something gay couple in front of him, who had their two little girls in tow.

Everyone was in good spirits as the conversation moved from the Obama-McCain contest to the farce that is Sarah Palin, and then on to non-political matters, like the road work being done on the next block. The conversation between the cop and the couple started to get animated toward the end of our hour in line as the three men began to discuss the current football season, wagering bets for this weekend's games and making predictions for the Super Bowl.

And then, as we entered the firehouse that doubled as our polling place, as the couple and their daughters stepped out of line and up to the table to receive their ballots, I observed the cop in front of me. He opened his sample ballot, took out his pen, scribbled out his "yes" vote on Proposition 8, and filled in the ballot line for "no."

I don't think he knew that I observed him. And since it was such a private moment I held back my tears of joy and my overwhelming desire to pat him on the back and say "thank you, sir." Instead, I left the polling place muttering to myself those two words you have repeated over and over during this election cycle, Andrew:

KNOW.

HOPE.

From a reader in Sacramento of a political blog. (Andrew Sullivan's The Daily Dish)

Of course this kind of simple effectiveness does rather depend on the party to be convinced being receptive to alternative points of view. After all, what is "wrong" is simply what someone says it is. Changing minds and changing beliefs, that's what it's all about.

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*Shrug* Example or argument, sooner or later the situation will change. It has changed before, after all.

cartoongaymarriagebm4.jpg

(thanks Andrew)

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Dante, the only thing you've said so far that I agree with you on is that "sooner or later the situation will change. It has changed before, after all." And, there is no doubt in my mind that, within the next 20 years, people will have the right to marry whomever they choose, irrespective of gender.

However, whether it's 5 years or 10 or 20 or 100 is dictated by the actions of people today. And where I vehemently disagree with you is this: "Now I'm quite aware that everyone is entitled to their opinion, and nobody should be forced to follow a path that they are not comfortable with, and that everyone's convictions are of equal worth blah blah etc... But lets face it, moral objections that largely stem from fear, xenophobia, or a series of archaic instructions from a civilisation that died out over a thousand years ago have no place in modern society." This does nothing more than provide a somewhat convenient way to justify a whitewashing of the Yes-8 view as mere "intolerance."

When, in fact the only side that has really been reported as displaying this trait is the No-8 side: http://www.time.com/time/nation/article/0,8599,1859323,00.html?cnn=yes is an interesting article on the subject, but that "racial epithets" have been hurled at black Americans, that No-8 groups have begun posting the names of individuals and businesses that have given to the Yes-8 side and demanded that "retribution be exacted" is wrong. At a time where people are campaigning for increased tolerance, increased unity, increased recognition of differences, to do what--it seems to me--the vast majority of No-8 supporters are doing is wrong. Worse than wrong, it invalidates the very cause they're fighting for, and, should they win by these means, they establish the very same precedent for oppression that they themselves feel to be victims of. These actions may terrorize enough Californians into voting No-8 or along those lines the next time around, but it will not help to promote tolerance. Just the opposite, in fact.

I will end with a quote from a manager of a Yes-8 website, who is forced to take down the names of individuals from the site for fear of retaliation: "It's really awful," says Frank Schubert, campaign manager for Yes on Proposition 8. "No matter what you think of Proposition 8, we ought to respect people's right to participate in the political process. It strikes me as quite ironic that a group of people who demand tolerance and who claim to be for civil rights are so willing to be intolerant and trample on other people's civil rights."

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That's an old criticism of civil rights movements. "If they want us to respect their civil rights, perhaps they should start by respecting ours. Privacy, freedom of speech, freedom of religion" etc. It's been used since the 70's and probably earlier. And it's perfectly valid. Claiming civil rights for some but not others is kind of the point we're trying to make here.

I'm kind of divided. On the one hand, everyone *is* entitled to their own beliefs. On the other, they have already disrespected and hurt a whole lot of people, and shouldn't really be surprised when those people throw hurtful and disrespectful things back. I'm not saying this retaliation is justified, just that it's unsurprising.

And while it is awfully ironic that proponents of tolerance and acceptance can act intolerantly, I think it is equally ironic that their targets should complain about it.

"I argue for tolerance and acceptance."

"I voted you wrong because your argument is stupid and you're ugly."

"You bastard."

"How can you say that? You preach tolerance and acceptance omgwtfbbq!!!1"

Yes, I know it was posted a while back. Sometimes the bleeding obvious requires a bit of reinforcement. However, if it's originality we're looking for, lets see what a quick google search brings up.

3010723326_b24f1b127c.jpg

Way to prioritise, California.

20080113.gif

Because it makes SO MUCH SENSE.

2N121218JHy191215Q9eQ.jpg

Now I know that the no-voters aren't being particularly cordial right now either, but if this is the kind of thing you have to deal with then you may not be inclined to respond with love and understanding.

q2209o1b.jpg

Directly related to the matter at hand! Short and sweet.

wc161.gif

Perhaps a dig at a larger issue. I'll let you draw your own conclusions from that.

What I think no-8 supporters fail to understand is that for most people in this country, this is not a civil rights issue, its a morality issue. No one can force another to believe that they should support an issue that they feel is morally and fundamentally wrong.  Anymore than you could convince them that allowing fathers to marry their daughters is a good thing for society.

Now, I think it's obvious that this is both a civil rights and a morality issue. It just so happens that the two have come into conflict. To grossly generalise, freedom of religion vs... well everything else. It's quite true, nobody can force others to believe something. But minds can be changed. If they couldn't, black people would still sit at the back of busses, women would still be unable to vote, and Germany would be a seething mass of anti-semitism. Time was when "Jews are our misfortune" was an acceptable thing to publish in a children's book. In 1905 the president of America wrote that allowing women to vote would unbalance "a natural equilibrium so nicely adjusted to the attributes and limitations of both [men and women] that it cannot be disturbed without social confusion and peril."

Would that be accaptable today? Dear me no. Why? Because minds changed. People saw through the lies and hyperbole and xenophobia. And if they can do it once, they can do it again. And they will do it again.

Once again, who decides what is right and what is wrong? In a democracy, majority rules and the majority has spoken.
The majority is not infallible, I would like to point out. Witness Darwin, who was right all along despite sometimes fierce opposition. Witness Alfred Wegener, whose proposal of continental drift was largely ridiculed at the time. Witness the public, who voted into power Nixon, Hitler, Mugabe, Bush... The majority is human, and humans are fallible. It works within the system, but the democratic system is... limited.

In closing:

20061117.gif

Well done, land of the free and the home of the brave.

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Certainly, the argument that "if they want rights, they should respect ours" is just as silly as the argument that, by passing Prop-8, the "rights" of individuals in California who seek something other than traditional, heterosexual marriages are being trampled. There is no "right to marry" in any legal document in the United States of America--not even as a theoretical "ideal" in the Declaration (where, by the way, we Americans pussied out and replaced "property," which was in the original version, with "pursuit of happiness") and to "legally enshrine" a right for people of any sex to marry people of any sex would be to enumerate a right, that, perhaps, ought not to be enumerated.

In fact, the only pertinent legal matter that exists on this issue is the "Separation of Church and State" issue, accompanied by the Establishment and Free Exercise Clauses of the First Amendment to the Bill of Rights. The government shall "make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof." To legally proscribe that marriages must be heterosexual, or even to say that marriages may consist of any combination of genders, would be to make a law respecting the establishment of religion--as marriage is, legally-speaking, an operation of the Church's that the government recognizes, not vice versa. If you're gay and you want to marry your beau, you're better off arguing that, legally speaking, the government has no right to tell your church who it can and can't marry. Demanding that the government intervene and "set the record straight" (pardon my pun) on what marriage should "legally be defined as" is an encroachment on the very principles which, if encroached upon, will lead to decreased liberties for us all. Hence, No-8 is objectively the right answer, but not for the reasons we all think it should be. Certainly not because this is a "human rights" issue, and labelling it as such--while technically true--is a good way to cash in on things like ethnic cleansing and institutionalized racism that, here, isn't as applicable. It has the same hyperbolic value as people crying out that they're being persecuted for supporting Yes-8. At the end of the day, both sides are in the wrong. But, I digress, and I've already shown you how to be in the right. Now, let's stop this Kristallnacht on uninformed, presumably straight people?

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I will admit that it is because I am too lazy to follow up on the various vagaries myself that I ask about them here (no one's perfect right?)...

''The government shall "make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof''

Especially considering the latter bit, what exactly does THAT entail. They are not allowed to make a law prohibiting the free exercising of establishments of religion? Does it ACTUALLY mean that they are not allowed to make any such prohibiting law specifically (purposefully/with that being the main reason/ whatever) to prohibit religious establishments. By the way, the word establishment seems ambiguous. Does it refer to physical establishments, ie: churches (basically) or establishments as in the ''establishment of marriage'' (maybe it is me having an incorrect definition of establishment that is at fault here... still, that which ''is established'' could seemingly refer either to a law or a physical locale or perhaps even to many other things)

If it is simply as it is said then what would stop people from inventing any religion with any religious establishment in order to do anything. Of course, this would not result in immunity from laws already passed, but it would prevent the further passing of preventative laws in the future if the government willed it which seems absurd. What if some religion was founded before the abolition of slavery laws that exercises slave keeping as part of it's religion?

I will admit though, that it there may not be much left to exploit before legislation comes in. Still, this would seem to limit the governments ability to simply change it's mind? Of course, even the law in question can be changed. They could simply change the line to: The government shall "make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof'' EXCEPT when it comes to law A.

I wonder if there is any point arguing via legality, as all legislation can be changed to allow anything. Some might think that could entail changes in legislation that have large negative effects just for the sake of one small matter, but as the example above indicates one must wonder if this is every really the case. The except line might make any law as flexible as it needs to be. For example, say the no-prop8's started arguing that in fact this is illegal as

On this matter, is marriage defined as whatever the Bible says it is, and does the Bible say it is a union between a man and a woman (exclusively). It that is the case, then how can any legislation allow marriage between two men without changing the Bible's text. It is like having a reptile being defined as something that lays eggs and then having people demand that bears be legally considered reptiles. It is a matter of definition.

Even if the text of the Bible were changed, it is probably the case that actually marriage is defined as whatever God says it is and whatever is in the Bible is what God says it is. So, for those who believe in the Bible and God and all that...

As for those who don't believe in the Bible and God, then wouldn't the above definition of marriage be moot (along with the concept of marriage generally being moot).

Hence, for all (those who do believe and those who don't), the concept of homosexual marriage seems to not make any sense. One might even call it a paradox.

Do take note that that is not to say that I think that homosexuals should not be allowed to live together or whatever.

I couldn't care less about sexual preference and am pretty much not religious.

It should also be noted that I don't really care about marriage either, which it seems is a meaningless concept (to me) since the important part about it is generally the ''HOLY'' union bit about and what with there being no such thing as holiness/divinity/whatever (to me).

As for the legal entailments and characteristics of marriage which do come from the bible, why not not the state of marriage with only these (ie: minus the religious-dependent bits), give it a new name and allow homosexuals to practice this.

It would no longer have anything to do with the bible, so the religious should have no problem with it (at least not due to their religion) and it would no longer contain any line about it strictly being exclusively man-woman pair only ''enter-able'' state thus avoiding any paradox.

Presumably, it is the legal part that homosexuals are concerned with, not the holy part which they obviously cannot take part it. That is not the fualt of the government who did not create the religions (well, assuming that at least, as many suspect that religion is just a crafted control tool and if it were then the Government would probably be the prime suspect).

Also, all this talk about ''personal attacks'' is quite vague as well.

What exactly are the ''personal attacks''? Are they only words?

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"marriage is, legally-speaking, an operation of the Church's that the government recognizes, not vice versa"

If you go down that route, the constitution is broken by every state that recognises marriage, never mind gives them special legal privileges.

And that's not even a route you can go down, from the looks of it. To be technical about it, the states issue licenses to marry, whereupon churches may act upon the certificate. More to the point, you don't need to hold a church ceremony, you can get it done civilly. While I think it would be quite funny to force LDS churches et al to perform gay weddings, I'd hazard a guess that that would not be constitutional.

On the other hand, if you're arguing for the abolition of all state recognition of marriage, from tax laws to civil registers, it's going to cause all sorts of short-term problems, but might be much better in the long term.

Sneakgab, I just want to note that there are religions which have marriage ceremonies or equivalent commitment ceremonies for gay couples.

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''If you go down that route, the constitution is broken by every state that recognises marriage, never mind gives them special legal privileges.''

It does seem that the vagary of ''make no law respecting an establishment of religion'' would entail that, since giving such privileges and what not certainly sounds like ''law respecting an establishment of religion''. Then again, the line is so vague. One must wonder if it is technically possible for an abstract thing like a law to ''show respect'' by itself (though of course a human could show respect by creating such a law). It seems to that such important legal documents should probably be as utterly precise as possible.

''To be technical about it, the states issue licenses to marry, whereupon churches may act upon the certificate''

That sounds similar to the legal system with the legislatorive, judicial and executive/enforcement branches needing to reach agreement to act. Except here churches act as the latter-most branch and unlike the police it may be that individuals are less bound by authority and ''bosses''. Though, one might imagine that high ranking members of the clergy may have power allowing for dismissal, punishment and direct prohibition via rank.

''Sneakgab, I just want to note that there are religions which have marriage ceremonies or equivalent commitment ceremonies for gay couples.''

I take it you mean to say that there are religions whose holy laws and text that allow for same sex marriage to not be a paradoxical term? Then again you're mentioning of ''equivalent commitment ceremonies'' suggests otherwise. Perhaps you mean to say that there are already providers of ''civil unions''.

Ah, I had considered it, but I wouldn't be surprised if there were some that considered my post overly lengthy as is.

Hmmm, one might suggest that different religions mean different concepts of marriage.

Of course, it would be easily possible that it would not be worth it for a homosexual or lesbian to call himself a member of a different religion (if necessary) to obtain ''marriage''.

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Mormons step up security after anti-Prop. 8 vandalism

A bit offtopic, but...

Educated Catholics have sown dissent and confusion in the Church, claims bishop

Those pesky educated people. They are destroying the churchs power by not blindly following a religion!

Who didn't see this coming? Educated people not believing in religion.

While not naming names, he suggested that such people had been compromised by their education, which he said had a "dark side, due to original sin".

Education should be banned, and only allowed for those high in the Church. It says so in the bible. ;)

EDIT:

Mormons Tipped Scale in Ban on Gay Marriage

At least this prop 8 showed once again the true side of people on both sides. Hopefully Californians will get together and force religions to pay taxes. That should go to a vote.

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["marriage is, legally-speaking, an operation of the Church's that the government recognizes, not vice versa"

If you go down that route, the constitution is broken by every state that recognises marriage, never mind gives them special legal privileges.

And that's not even a route you can go down, from the looks of it. To be technical about it, the states issue licenses to marry, whereupon churches may act upon the certificate. More to the point, you don't need to hold a church ceremony, you can get it done civilly. While I think it would be quite funny to force LDS churches et al to perform gay weddings, I'd hazard a guess that that would not be constitutional.

On the other hand, if you're arguing for the abolition of all state recognition of marriage, from tax laws to civil registers, it's going to cause all sorts of short-term problems, but might be much better in the long term.]

Nema: I don't see how your first point follows. In fact, I think you've got it all backwards. The Constitution devolves powers to the States. The States recognize marriage because... that's what the Constitution tells them to do. Hence, what I said is in fact exactly what the Constitution--in effect, and in principle--is talking about. Though, I don't blame you for missing that--your unwritten constitution across the pond is a little different.

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Not knowing much about law (especially American law), I shall wait for Nema and Wolf to discuss the legalities further before commenting (at least on matters that the legalities hold relevance for) on such matters.

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