Friday, April 10, 2009

Difference between Civil Liberties and Civil Rights.


I started to take a survey given by The ACLU, this morning and the very first question puzzled me a bit, I'll tell you why in a moment. Here it is:

When you think about the causes you care about, what three causes are
most important to you?

Human Rights
Public Radio or TV
International Relief
Electoral Politics
Health Issues
Civil Liberties
Civil Rights
Reproductive Rights
LGBT Rights

I checked off "Civil Liberties" and then I came to "Civil Rights". "Wait a minute isn't that redundant?", I asked myself. Well, it appears many
government officials are asking this, also. Upon Googling for an explanation of what is the difference; I came across the below article that explains exactly what it is. The article, in so many words, acknowledges why States should be questioning this difference.

I believe the reason we are hearing States (Massachusetts, Connecticut, Iowa, and now Vermont) rule, that not allowing homosexual couples the right to marry, infringes on their "Civil Rights"! Therefore, they (the THINKING State Officials and the "WE THE PEOPLE" of these states)
conclude, homosexuals should be allotted the same "Civil Rights" heterosexual couples have.

A parting note: Being Human means being different from one another, that is how evolution works. In simplistic terms; evolving from an organism that was formed in one part of the world but grouped off to wander the globe, and settle in total different climates and regions from one another... (giving or
taking a million years or so..) made them (us) diverse from the original
species. (and that doesn't include the many genetic varitions that had occurred.
Myths and Facts about Homosexuality)...) Actually it's really amazing, we resemble one another at all!!!

Diversity is what being alive is all about!

Diversity Defined

Diversity is generally defined as acknowledging, understanding, accepting, valuing, and celebrating differences among people with respect to age, class, ethnicity, gender, physical and mental ability, race, sexual orientation, spiritual practice, and public assistance status ...

From this site: Diversity in the Workplace:

Read the article below and if you would like... take the ACLU survey,
here: thinkingblue

Difference between civil rights and civil liberties

by Sheila Suess Kennedy

Quick -- what's the difference between civil liberties and civil rights?

If you aren't quite certain, you have a lot of company.
The distinction is lost on most of my students, and -- far
more troubling -- on a good number of city and state legislators.

Civil liberties are rights that individuals
have against government. Citizens of the new United States
refused to ratify the Constitution unless a Bill of Rights
was added, specifically protecting them against official
infringements of their "inalienable rights." Among
our civil liberties are the right to free expression, the
right to worship (or not) as we choose, and the right to be
free from unreasonable searches and seizures.

After the civil war, the 14th Amendment added the Equal
Protection Clause, prohibiting government from treating
equally situated citizens unequally. The 14th Amendment also
applied the provisions of the Bill of Rights to all levels of
government -- not just the federal government, as was
originally the case, but also to state and local government

Only the government can violate your civil liberties.

Civil rights took a lot longer and were a lot more controversial.

It was 1964 before Congress passed the Civil Rights Act.
Civil rights laws protect people against private acts of
discrimination -- discrimination in employment, in housing or
education. The original Civil Rights Act applied to
businesses engaged in interstate commerce -- businesses that
held themselves out to be "public accommodations"
but were, shall we say, "selective" about which
segments of the public they were willing to accommodate.

State and local civil rights acts followed. Civil rights
laws generally include a list of characteristics that cannot
be used to favor some people over others: race, religion,
gender and so forth.

There was a lot of resistance to civil
rights laws, and there is still a widespread, if covert,
attitude of "What business does government have telling
me I can't discriminate?" That resentment has redoubled
as new groups have lobbied for protection.

The fiercest resistance has come from
people opposed to extending civil rights to gays and
Those opponents have taken advantage of the
widespread confusion of civil liberties with civil rights to
argue that the 14th Amendment already protects gays, so
amending Indiana's civil rights law, or Marion County's Human
Relations Ordinance is unnecessary. (After
all, that's easier than taking a public position that
"those people" don't deserve equal civil rights.)

I remember the astonishment of one of my African-American
students when she realized that, in Indiana,
people can be fired just because they are gay.

"There is still a lot of discrimination against black
people," she said, "but at least there are laws on
the books! They may not always work, but they're something."

A few months ago, the Indianapolis
City-County Council failed to pass a measure that would have
made discrimination on the basis of sexual orientation a
violation of the city's Human Relations Ordinance. Several of
those voting against it said it was "unnecessary"
because the 14th Amendment already protected gays.

They knew better.

Gay Marriage & Civil Rights

Let's keep our heads, while we
continue to watch THE THEATER OF THE ABSURD!!!


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