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Tonik

Honest question.

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So there is a debate in a few States on whether or not a convicted felon should be able to vote. I am of the opinion that if you do your time you have repaid your debt to society and you most certainly should be able to vote.

But we prohibit felons from owning guns. If they get their constitutional rights back they get all of them back right? Or just some?

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There is a pretty standard mean time for recidivism. If they stay out for twice that amount of time, full rights should be restored. Had I not been a mixture of smart and lucky I would have several felonies under my belt right now from my 20's, despite being a perfectly productive law-abiding citizen today. Well, most laws anyway...

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52 minutes ago, Tonik said:

So there is a debate in a few States on whether or not a convicted felon should be able to vote. I am of the opinion that if you do your time you have repaid your debt to society and you most certainly should be able to vote.

But we prohibit felons from owning guns. If they get their constitutional rights back they get all of them back right? Or just some?

I don't see felons voting as a problematic.  I doubt there'd be a big a wave of new voters that would change the outcome of elections. 

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I temporarily lost my rights but had them restored through the court. I get voting ballots religiously and they expect me to do jury duty, but yet I still can't purchase firearms... Even though I have court papers saying I'm allowed to. The FBI system seems like it doesn't ever get updated. I filed a dispute but I got a letter saying they're 2yr behind. That was 3yr ago and I never heard back.

So... On paper, you can have your rights restored, but good luck purchasing a firearm. 

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I guess locally there's a fear of them helping vote in people wanting to be lighter on crime.

 Do DUI people endlessly get their DL back too? 

 

Throughout the United States, some of the general rights convicted felons lose are as follows, varying state by state:

Voting

Traveling abroad

The right to bear arms or own guns

Jury service

Employment in certain fields

Public social benefits and housing

Parental benefits

 

 

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If we are being honest, I feel most people should not own a firearm or be allowed to vote based purely on the fact that they are too fucking stupid. However, civil liberties, founding fathers, constitution, yada-yada.... 

Freedom is a messy business. Either we all are equal or we are not. I don't like the idea of ex-convicts walking around with access to firearms, but I seriously doubt they really are a huge threat to society. Nevermind the fact that laws don't keep guns out of the hands of felons. We should look at why going back to crime is such a popular option for a lot of these individuals. Privatized prisons could be a good place to begin looking. Lack of emotional and spiritual support is a big factor. Not necessarily "Jesus loves the little children..." type of spirituality. I mean the real shit that helps a person connect with something greater than himself. Honest soul searching. Honest societal forgiveness. No more shame-inducing policies that only exacerbate the hardships that ex-cons face when they are released into society. 

I mean... are we REALLY going to talk about it? The average American voter is about as intelligent as a fire hydrant. Can we even solve real intellectual issues with voting ballots when the vast majority of the populace is running around town square with double-digit intelligence quotients? 

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14 minutes ago, Pauly said:

If we are being honest, I feel most people should not own a firearm or be allowed to vote based purely on the fact that they are too fucking stupid. However, civil liberties, founding fathers, constitution, yada-yada.... 

Freedom is a messy business. Either we all are equal or we are not. I don't like the idea of ex-convicts walking around with access to firearms, but I seriously doubt they really are a huge threat to society. Nevermind the fact that laws don't keep guns out of the hands of felons. We should look at why going back to crime is such a popular option for a lot of these individuals. Privatized prisons could be a good place to begin looking. Lack of emotional and spiritual support is a big factor. Not necessarily "Jesus loves the little children..." type of spirituality. I mean the real shit that helps a person connect with something greater than himself. Honest soul searching. Honest societal forgiveness. No more shame-inducing policies that only exacerbate the hardships that ex-cons face when they are released into society. 

I mean... are we REALLY going to talk about it? The average American voter is about as intelligent as a fire hydrant. Can we even solve real intellectual issues with voting ballots when the vast majority of the populace is running around town square with double-digit intelligence quotients? 

This. And I would add that a large portion of convicted felons are non-violent drug offenders. Reform drug laws, reform prison for profit. Less felons. 

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I haven't had a chance to read into the current debate but to add something to the conversation with a limited personal background of the issue.  Convicted felon that is still incarcerated I would say no vote.  Once time served and back into public I would be much more willing to allow a vote.

Edited by vf1000ride

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Once your time is served you should be fully restored, regardless imo. The criminal justice system has some issues. The felons who shouldn't own firearms are not the kind who are going to obey firearm laws anyways. 

Edited by Steve Butters

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Should tonik's right to give accounts suspension be restored after he didn't own a bike for several days?

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While I don't have any real issue with felons voting, bringing this up is a stupid political move by Sanders.

The political fear mongers (on the right in this case), will do what political fear mongers do. 

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13 hours ago, Tonik said:

So there is a debate in a few States on whether or not a convicted felon should be able to vote. I am of the opinion that if you do your time you have repaid your debt to society and you most certainly should be able to vote.

But we prohibit felons from owning guns. If they get their constitutional rights back they get all of them back right? Or just some?

Right to vote? Yes, they did their time/service/fines. Own a gun? I think it could be contingent on the crime. Violent crimes - hell no. For things like tax evasion or many other "white collar" crimes, I don't have an issue with that.

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1 minute ago, ScubaCinci said:

Right to vote? Yes, they did their time/service/fines. Own a gun? I think it could be contingent on the crime. Violent crimes - hell no. For things like tax evasion or many other "white collar" crimes, I don't have an issue with that.

I agree with you, but I wonder if we are being hypocritical. A constitutional right is a right, giving back some but not others seems to violate the equal protection clause and it makes some rights 2nd class rights.

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IMO, you forfeit some of those rights when you commit the crime. It's not like they were taken arbitrarily.

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42 minutes ago, ScubaCinci said:

Right to vote? Yes, they did their time/service/fines. Own a gun? I think it could be contingent on the crime. Violent crimes - hell no. For things like tax evasion or many other "white collar" crimes, I don't have an issue with that.

 

39 minutes ago, Tonik said:

I agree with you, but I wonder if we are being hypocritical. A constitutional right is a right, giving back some but not others seems to violate the equal protection clause and it makes some rights 2nd class rights.

How long do we make them pay for their crimes after our justice system has decreed they have paid for their crimes? Since every person with a functioning brain knows gun restrictions will not keep these baddies from acquiring a firearm, exactly how does one reconcile this point of view with reality and reason? 

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56 minutes ago, Pauly said:

Since every person with a functioning brain knows gun restrictions will not keep these baddies from acquiring a firearm, exactly how does one reconcile this point of view with reality and reason? 

By that logic, why have speed limits...many people ignore them anyway. Just because something isn't 100% effective, it doesn't mean it shouldn't be in place.

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You will need a stronger argument than that to convince me that imposing extended punishment that is not enforceable by any stretch of the police budget is even slightly in the same ball park as speeding violations. My immediate counter is one is an infraction based on physical evidence that is provable by eye witness account and velocity measuring technology. The other is a punitive action for a crime not yet committed. 

32 minutes ago, ScubaCinci said:

By that logic, why have speed limits...many people ignore them anyway. Just because something isn't 100% effective, it doesn't mean it shouldn't be in place.

 

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13 minutes ago, Pauly said:

You will need a stronger argument than that to convince me that imposing extended punishment that is not enforceable by any stretch of the police budget is even slightly in the same ball park as speeding violations. My immediate counter is one is an infraction based on physical evidence that is provable by eye witness account and velocity measuring technology. The other is a punitive action for a crime not yet committed. 

 

It's a pile on charge, that is when it is enforced. Extra time for armed robbery because you did it with a gun as a previous felon.

I am good with that.

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Yeah, but it is still non-enforceable thought policing. 

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1 hour ago, Pauly said:

The other is a punitive action for a crime not yet committed.

Where is the crime not committed? :dunno: Felon = crime committed. Felon having possession of firearm = crime committed.

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1 hour ago, ScubaCinci said:

Where is the crime not committed? :dunno: Felon = crime committed. Felon having possession of firearm = crime committed.

Weren't we discussing the merits of holding released persons to a different standard than other citizens? 

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Felon's shouldn't vote.  Because law abiding citizens have done a great job of putting ethical, moral, non-criminals in office...right?

 

 

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18 minutes ago, Pauly said:

Weren't we discussing the merits of holding released persons to a different standard than other citizens? 

OK, but how do you go from that to punitive actions for a crime not being committed? If by punitive action you mean denying them legal access to firearms, that is as a result of their conviction of commission of a crime so the punitive action is a result of their previous actions, regardless of their future firearm usage intent.

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14 minutes ago, ScubaCinci said:

OK, but how do you go from that to punitive actions for a crime not being committed? If by punitive action you mean denying them legal access to firearms, that is as a result of their conviction of commission of a crime so the punitive action is a result of their previous actions, regardless of their future firearm usage intent.

The original question is whether or not they should be allowed to vote since they have paid their debt to society. Clearly, you feel former convicted felons should be held to the current standard. So, you have answered the question. I feel Americans are too stupid to know how to govern themselves and should be restricted from voting without some sort of empirical evidence demonstrating above-average intelligence. 

I view denying released citizens their constitutional rights as a failure. 

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