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September 15, 2008

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Comments

Matt Sulentic

Your comments on Amendment 48 are absolutely rediculous!! I believe it is our government's responsibility to protect its citizens, especially those that are most helpless and don't have a voice. The motive behind this is to stop women from intentionally taking the life of their unborn child simply as a means of birth control, which is the main reason women murder their unborn children. To think that if a woman has a miscarraige she will be charged with a crime is absurd!! What a stupid argument to try to scare people into voting against this amendment! You ought to be ashamed of yourself! Shame on you!

a watcher

Thanks, Matt, for commenting.

You inadvertantly bring up a point that I hadn't thought of or seen elsewhere. The personhood amendment would confer citizenship on fertalized eggs. If one checks the 14th amendment to the US Constitution, it says in part:

"Representatives shall be apportioned among the several States according to their respective numbers, counting the whole number of persons in each State, excluding Indians not taxed."

This is just another reason that this is a really bad idea, and no, I feel no shame for pointing that out.

Matthew Sulentic

If a fertilized egg is not a human being, what is it?

a watcher

Amendment 48 doesn't propose to grant "human beinghood" status. It proposes to grant "personhood" status. Those are not the same thing in law or tradition. You and I can and do differ as to whether they should be the same thing. Hopefully we can differ amicably.

It is my view that those who support this do so with the best of intentions, but are so focused on getting rid of one evil that they can't see (or won't admit) that they will substitute many evils in its place.

Mike Biles

I don't know if you've seen this

http://ballotpedia.org/wiki/index.php/Colorado_2008_ballot_measures

It has descriptions of all the ballot measures and most importantly it has links to the ACTUAL TEXT of each one.

Ginny Newman

A fertilized egg is NOT a person. Until the 'egg' can live outside the mother's body, it's a fetus. VOTE NO!

Robert Julich

Ginny, you are an idiot. So when the heart is beating and you see it on an ultrasound it's not alive? Are you kidding me?

a watcher

This is a forum for civil discussion. Please don't call each other idiots.

As for the heart beating comment, that is not what is at issue here. As a matter of law and custom, Ginny is 99% correct if she limits her comment to "personhood." If she weren't correct, this initiative wouldn't be on the ballot.

The proponents are trying to redefine a legal term in a way that would have impacts that they are unwilling to discuss or admit. In almost all aspects of law and custom, including most pre-Roe religious customs, life, meaning "legal personhood," does not begin until a live birth occurs. It is fair to try to change that, but only after a full and open discussion of the ramifications.

a watcher

I have stopped approving comments from both sides of amendment 48 because they have moved away from the focus of this post which is 18 ballot issues and their impact on the law and taxes.

If someone on the Pro 48 side wants to discuss the legal implications of 48 beyond its obvious attempt to do away with Roe, I will approve that kind of post.

For the record and new readers: I oppose Roe because it is bad constitutional law and not on religious grounds. Roe is just one porduct of a completely out of control legal profession that has skewed our society in ways the founders wouldn't recognise. Now you should understand why I want this post to focus on the legalities of 48 and the other ballot issues.

Chris

Thanks for your voter guide. I plan to vote the exact opposite from your suggestions. People like you need to prepare to move firmly into the minority category. Your policies have messed things up about as much as possible. It will be 15 to 20 years at least before you will have even a remote chance at political power again. No more playing on peoples fears. Even your churches are moving away from you. All you have left is your little echo chambers. You all keep saying the same things and think it influences anyone other than someone who looks just like you. I am a middle aged white male and your actions will no longer dishonor me. I only wish dueling was still possible, I would take as many of you with me as possible.

a watcher

Chris

I have never been challenged to a duel before.

Since you are doubtless anti-gun, I accept your challenge. You bring your knife, I'll bring my shotgun. Twenty paces.

At least have a sense of humor.

I've been around long enough to know that 1) no matter how this election swings, the next one will swing back, and 2) most people can be cordial about the outcome, excepting some natural gloating. I guess you are the exception.

nele

Watcher, thanks for a well-written summarization of the amendments. I'm a new Colorado voter and in seeking to find out info about the ballot, came upon your blog. I'm a Democrat and don't agree with all of your positions, but I appreciate your level headed approach (especially when responding to comments)! --nele

ALEX REEVES

Amendment 50. Lets keep the gamblers in the state and stop sending them to Vegas and DeadWood and around the country. Casino's are here they are not leaving but the Colorado gamblers are leaving, for better table odds and more higher stakes Slots. Also the slot machines don't get turned off at night, Lets open the doors and let people play to accomodate grave shifts and people that work those hours. As far as the bad aspects of gambling go people are people they will do as they want if they dont get there fix in the casino they will sports bet internet bet. Worked in gaming for 14yrs, people like to come up becuase it's close convienant and local. Higher stakes will create jobs. So in the end with amendment 50 passing, Colorado will win a huge Jackpot.

Gordon

At first, I disagreed with your position on Amendment 48, however, after reading it a second time and then reading your response to a few comments, I came to the conclusion that you are correct. Life begins at conception, but not personhood. There is a difference. Thanks for putting up this informative web site. It will definitely influence how I vote in this upcoming election.

Mick

NO on 58? SHAME ON YOU. Your special interests are showing, and they're dirty.

a watcher

Mick, I'm glad you gave me a chance to write more on Amendment 58. Since you claim that my "special interests are showing," you must be able to name them, especially if they are, as you claim, "dirty."

Amendment 58 is, in the parlance of drug addiction, a temporary "fix" for those who are addicted to raising taxes. Recall the giant hole in the ground that was to be the Auroria campus science building with the legislature claiming that it didn't have enough money to finish it? Not a penny of Amendment 58 money would go for higher education facilities.

We taxpayers will eventually be asked to dig deeper into our pockets for that obvious need. Indeed, that has already happened with Ref C, but the pond scum who wrote Ref C couldn't keep their word once they had the money. There isn't even any pretense that Amendment 58 will solve ANY problem that the voters will want solved in the future.

The history of programs like Amendment 58 is that they provide an excuse for dramatically increased tuition that eats up the scholarship monies, leaving the middle class holding the bag. The poor will have this scholarship. The wealthy won't care. The middle class won't be able to afford to send their kids to college because of the increased tuition and the inability of this fund to pay for a benefit they thought they were getting. Mark those words.

Colorado Springs Utilities projected a 70% increase in rates over the next ten years. Some of that increase will be for higher fuel costs. This "free" tax that doesn't pay for anything that anyone really wants will be paid by those with utilities hookups.

There is nothing...NOTHING in the Amendment 58 tax package that will benefit voters or taxpayers in the long run and much that will hurt us. Bill Ritter is a tax addict. Amendment 58 is his "fix," but only for 2008. There will another "fix" at public expense in 2009.

Jeff

I'm a bit dismayed by your opposition to 51. These taxs can include monies directed to early intervention programs, something from which my son benefitted. Because of this program, my son, who has "graduated" from early intervention, is prepared for school in a way he might not have been. He will not be behind the curve right out of the gate. 51 is a two-year tax that goes to clearing off the wait list that includes those children who can receive these sam benefits. I agree it's a special interest, but it's a special interest that can pay dividends in the future.

Greg

Thank you for the election guide. I won't say I agree with everything you've written, but it was all written very well. Your point of view was clear and your tone agreeable. Thank you again.

Tim Zietse

The gambling industry is based on the idea that gamblers will lose. 50 will encourage them to lose much more to benefit some colleges? That makes only slightly more sense to me than raising tobacco taxes to stop people from smoking and planning on using the tax money for health care. I just got my mail in ballot and filled it out before I found this site. We matched on everything except 48. I'm scared.

Gualberto

Your comments on Amendment 48 are way off the mark.
Under the current criminal code a miscarriage, a completely involuntary act, would not (and could not) be made a crime. To say so is either to be completely ignorant of basic criminal law principles or to wish to mislead people.
In order for acts to be held to be criminal the person committing the crime must have committed an actus reus and have the necessary mens rea. These two Latin terms stand for the principle that a criminal must have committed a guilty act that was matched by a guilty mind. There are involuntary crimes, but those require a degree of recklessness that is not present in a miscarriage.
What Amendment 48 would do, for those who really care, is to bring equality under the law to pre-born and post-birth humans.
An example which would be much fairer to make as it actually has happened several times in only the last year is when a crime is committed against a pregnant mother who goes on to loose the child. Colorado law, as it stands, holds that the aggressor cannot be charged as having committed a crime by killing the pre-born child, because the criminal code only applies to persons, and the courts have held that pre-born children are not persons. Here are two links to articles that deal with real problems, not imaginary ones meant to scare and mislead people.
http://www.thedenverchannel.com/news/15529047/detail.html
http://www.9news.com/news/local/article.aspx?storyid=88592

Flamebotdrew

I really appreciate your views on the amendments. I was wondering why you didn't post any comments on referendum M & N. While I won't vote your way on all the amendments, there were some where you caused me to further investigate and then upon investigation change my vote.

PDiddy

So, If amendment 48 passes... will that mean that the legal drinking age will now be 20 yrs. and 3 months?

Steven

I was very pleased to find your site. It is good to have some balance to all the 'progressive' guides out there on the 2008 ballot initiatives. I appreciate the time and insight that you have added to each amendment, often including opposing views.

I have found that I agree with you on most of these issues. I disagree with you on 52, though I guess if there wasn't a 58 then we would agree on 52 as well.

For amendment 48, I am still a little undecided. I agree with a previous comment that one large benefit to this passing would be when crimes are committed against a woman whom is pregnant. I believe that crimes committed against a pregnant woman, especially if death to the unborn child occurs, the convicted should be guilty of affecting 2 lives, not just one.

Thank you again for the voter guide.

BearDog

Is there some way that you can find information about these judges that are voted on? All you can find is basically they are all approved until the news tells how they have been riding prostitutes and then all of the bad news comes out. There should be some help with how they have been interpreting laws. Thx.

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