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Viewing blog entries in category: My Opinions and Political Views
A common adage that I have heard said is “respect is not given; it is earned,” sounds like a very wise creed to follow, but, I recently conducted an internet search for it, and I discovered a series of articles that denounce that adage, saying that it is ridiculous, because all people deserve respect, regardless of their station in life.
Those articles have a very noble intention with their message, for which I respect them, but they all miss a very vital point: there are two types of respect, one of which is, indeed, freely given, and the other of which must be earned.
First, there is the type of respect that is given: this is the form of respect that all people are expected to demonstrate toward all other people, they are expected to be polite and courteous to others, including, but not limited to, receptionists, secretaries, waiters/waitresses, flight attendants, grocery baggers, cashiers, or other menial positions that are clearly at or near the bottoms of their hierarchies. I imagine that very few people ever willingly wish to be in such positions, so giving respect to such people shall help them to feel better about being in such positions.
Second, there is the type of respect that is earned: this is the form of respect that people are expected to show toward doctors, lawyers, judges, airplane pilots, police officers, high-ranking military officers, CEO’s, politicians, or other people in positions of expertise and/or authority. These people have worked very hard to achieve the positions that they have, sometimes for many years, and they have endured great hardships and accumulated a great wealth of knowledge about their fields. That type of respect is not freely given, it must be earned through hardships and countless hours of effort and experience.
What does everyone else say about this? Do you agree that there are two types of respect?
For years, I have been hearing about how Firefly was an amazing television series and that its cancellation was such a great tragedy, so I decided to watch the series, and its sequel film, Serenity, to see why the franchise is so revered by the science fiction community.
I did find the series to be enjoyable, with its characters well-developed and its universe to be an interesting one, but I personally do not believe that it would ever have equaled Star Trek or Star Wars as one of the greatest science fiction franchises of all time. While I did enjoy the series, it did not give me a great thrill or sense of excitement, which is what I seek from any fictional series that I may follow. I am very sorry to say that the cancellation of this series did not elicit a strong emotional response from me, mostly because I did not watch it until years after it had been canceled, and thus, I never had a strong emotional attachment to it.
However, I can sympathize with fans and dedicated followers of the series who were devastated by its cancellation, since I was very upset when the new Thundercats series was cancelled after only one season, so I imagine that they must have felt similar to how I felt in that situation. Just as I retain the hope that Thundercats may one day return, I imagine that followers of Firefly also hope that that series may eventually be revived.
Many people consider the 1998 Godzilla film to be a very poor film, but I believe that it is not as terrible as some people say that it is; while it certainly is not a masterpiece, I believe that it still has its own appeal and merits, and I shall take time to address each issue about which people often complain.
First, the most common complaint that I have heard about this film is that Godzilla was defeated too easily, and I do agree with that; it was a great insult to the king of the monsters, who could withstand countless attacks from both human weapons and other kaiju was killed by a single barrage of missiles; not powerful nuclear missiles, but ordinary missiles. That is inexcusable, but I imagine that the reason for which it was done was to avoid using a deus ex machina to defeat him; while the oxygen destroyer from the original film was very awesome, it was a deus ex machina that a scientist conveniently had been working on a device that could destroy the giant monster that was rampaging across the nation.
Second, many people complained that the monster did not look like Godzilla, and, while I can understand their complaints, I actually liked the new design, as it was nice to see a giant monster that was swift and agile, rather than slow and ungainly; it is likely that the filmmakers wished to make a giant kaiju that was at least somewhat biologically-probable. Plus, that was not the first time that Godzilla had been redesigned; in the most recent films before the 1998 one, he did not look exactly the same as he had in the original.
Third, some people have said that the acting from the human characters was poorly-done or even "wooden," but none of the Godzilla films are known for the interactions between their human characters, which are only acceptable, at best.
Finally, one of the best aspects of the films is the tone and the atmosphere; some people criticized it for being to dark and somber, rather than than providing fun and enticing monster battles that previous films had. However, those people may not have remembered that the original film was a very dark and serious film; in fact, I believe that it is fair to say that the original Gojira is a horror film, inspired by the Universal Pictures horror films that had been produced in the United States not long before it. The original film was a clear analogy for the horrors of war, and especially nuclear weapons (remember that World War II had ended only nine years before that film was made), but the atmosphere of dread and horror was lost in nearly all of the subsequent films, which instead focused on fantastic battles between massive monsters, with the devastation to the cities and landscapes being treated as acceptable collateral damage, if it was even mentioned, at all. The Return of Godzilla (known in the United States as Godzilla 1985) had already returned to the dark and serious tone of the original film, but his film was made thirteen years later before Godzilla 1998, so I believe that that was a sufficient duration to wait before another film was made. Even the new 2014 film, for all of the praise that it has been receiving, did not properly capture the feeling of terror of the original, or of the 1998 version, since Godzilla was not the primary antagonist, and actually defeated the other kaiju who were the true antagonists.
That is my assessment of the film; I know that I certainly am unlikely to change the opinion that the majority of people have of that film, but I do believe that it is not as terrible as some people like to say that it is.
Numerous times, on both this forum and another forum of which I am a member, I have been accused of being a troll, which greatly displeases me, since I have very clearly and unambiguously stated that I oppose the practice of trolling.
For those who are not familiar with the term, a "troll" is a person who deliberately posts messages on an online discussion forum that are intended to provoke or annoy other people, and "trolling" is the practice of doing so.
I am an anti-troll; I dislike it when people post messages specifically to instigate arguments and anger others; I always ensure that I carefully deliberate every post that I make before making it, and I always make an effort to be polite and friendly, and to never intentionally cause arguments.
Anyone who knows me well should know this, but I shall state it, anyway. I fail to see how anyone could believe that I am a troll, after reading my posts and knowing my personality, so please keep this message in mind before you accuse me of being a troll, again. Thank you very much.
When I follow a fictional series, I often begin to support the idea of romantic between characters in the work, usually when I notice that such characters seem to have a connection to each other.
Therefore, I shall make a list of the various pairings and couples that I support in the various series that I am following. To be more specific, I shall mention only couples that have not yet been confirmed, since I see little reason to disagree with any couples that the storywriters themselves support; therefore, I shall not mention such couple as Byakuya/Hisana, Isshin/Masaki, Asuma/Kurenai, Minato/Kushina, or Aang/Katara, and so forth (for the record, I do support all of those couples).
While Kishimoto recently seems to be hinting strongly at Naruto/Sakura, I still prefer Sakura and Sasuke as a couple, since Sakura always admired Sasuke from a young age, and perhaps her love for him could help him to overcome his cold and distant personality. Also, supporting this couple also enables another pairing from Naruto that I support, Naruto/Hinata.
I support this couple because Hinata has always admired Naruto; he gave her strength and inspiration to improve herself. It is very unfortunate that Kishimoto has not been giving their relationship much attention, recently.
I am not certain who I support more as Shikamaru's partner: Temari or Ino, since both seem to have a strong connection with him. However, supporting Shikamaru/Temari would also enable Choji/Ino, so that is certainly an appealing argument in their favor. I am similarly undecided about who between Neji and Lee is a better match for Tenten.
The two of them have been friends for many years, and have been together for many of their adventures. While Ichigo has known Tatsuki for longer than he has known Orihime, less romance has been shown between them, and she also has not partaken in many of his adventures, so she does not seem to be a likely partner for him.
As with Ichigo and Orihime, above, these two have been friends for many years, so they seem to be a logical choice as a couple to support. In the early chapters of this story, I support Ichigo/Rukia, since they seemed to develop a strong bond when they were fighting hollows together, and Orihime/Uryu, because they seemed to bond during the Soul Society arc, but I later changed my support to Ichigo/Orihime and Rukia/Renji, since my previous choices would have left Renji without a partner.
This choice may seem odd, since Uryu and Nemu have interacted very little, but what interactions they have had seemed to hint that they could work as a romantic couple, to me, since Nemu has never received any love or affection from her father, Mayrui.
This is another instance of two people have known each other for many years, so I certainly support them, as well.
I support his couple for the same reasons that I have given before, but it now seems as if this pairing shall never be a reality.
Since One Piece does not focus heavily on romantic relationships, there are limited options from which I can choose.
Hancock is the only woman to express romantic interest in Luffy, plus, it would make sense for the future pirate king to have a queen, and both are powerful fighters with great fame and influence.
Both of them are swordfighters, and Tashigi greatly resembles Zoro's childhood friend, Kuina.
I support more couples in this series than I do in any other series, because the author provides so many hints and opportunities for such support.
While Mashima is strongly hinting at Natsu/Lucy recently, I believe that Lisanna is a better match for him, since they have been friends since childhood, and supporting them as a couple also enables Lucy/Loki, whom I support, as well.
This couple may not have as strong a focus as do some of the others, but I do not wish to see Lucy without a partner, and she and Loki did display care and affection toward each other during the brief arc that focused on Loki.
Juvia clearly has strong feelings for Gray, and while he may seem to be uninterested in her, he has shown some signs of concern for her on certain occasions, plus, they have similar powers, as well.
This relationship is similar to that of Bulma and Vegeta from Dragon Ball, in which a former enemy who is a rival of the main hero becomes involved with a blue-haired girl who is very intellectual and interested in knowledge. While their personalities are very different, the fact that they have shown concern for each other does make supporting them as a couple an easy and logical decision.
Again, as with the other couples, they have shown affection and concern for each other, so I support them as a couple.
The two of them have known each other for many years, and, while Jellal did attempt to kill Erza at one point, he later repented, and there certainly was strong tension between them during the Grand Magic Games.
Legend of Korra
The two of them seem to get along very well, thus far, but there is not much else to say about them, currently, other than the fact that Opal seems to be a much better match for Bolin than either Ginger or Eska.
Kai and Jinora have only recently met, but they are the same age and are both airbenders, so I do believe that they could possibly develop romantic feelings for each other, later.
I am not certain who I believe is a better match for Mako: Asami or Korra, so I shall likely not choose either of them and accept whichever of them the storywriters choose, if any.
Political "sex scandals" seem to be a major issue in the news recently, so I have my own opinion about them, as well.
I believe that it is irrational for the people to become emotional or surprised when a major politician is discovered to be engaging in extramarital sexual affairs, as such actions are none of the public's business. Politicians are still people, and they engage in the same activities as do other people, so I believe that it is wrong for the average citizens to judge politicians based upon behavior that is utterly irrelevant to their jobs.
Other public figures, such as athletes, musicians, and actors, or professionals, such as doctors or lawyers, may engage in extramarital affairs, as well, and people do not usually become angry over such events, then, nor do such actions usually threaten the careers of such people, so I fail to understand why people often regard politicians with such scrutiny.
In conclusion, I believe that people should stop becoming so emotional over extramarital affairs in the lives of politicians, and not act as if such occurrences are surprising or despicable, as it is not fair to those politicians, and certainly not an indicator of their competence at their jobs.
Same-sex marriage is another major issue on which I wish to comment, so I shall do so, here.
I believe that any two people who wish to be married should have the right to do so, without any restrictions, regardless of their sex. Marriage should be a private affair between the people who wish to be married, and neither the government nor other people should have any right to prevent them from being married. It is not anyone else's business who is married or for what reason, and same-sex couple deserve the same social status and legal treatment as opposite-sex couples.
I fail to see how a homosexual marriage could be any different from a heterosexual marriage, and I doubt that any children raised by such a couple would be very different from children raised by a heterosexual couple, as well.
Therefore, I believe that it is unconstitutional and morally wrong for the government to forbid same-sex marriage, and that society should learn to accept it, as well.
As Easter approaches, I notice that it does not usually receive as great attention from the general population as does Christmas, which has led many people to believe that Christmas is the most important Christian holiday. This belief was especially glaring in the recent film Rise of the Guardians, when Santa Claus tells the Easter Bunny that "Christmas is more important than Easter," which is utterly false.
While Christmas is certainly an important holiday to Christians, Easter is the most important holiday of all for those of the Christian faith, because it was Christ's resurrection, not his birth, that is the central foundation of Christianity. The belief that all people are welcome into the church of Christ, and can be reborn, as he was reborn, is what unites the members of the faith and serves as the basis for their actions and lives. I dislike how Christmas has become so greatly commercialized, and thus, more popular than Easter, so I attempt to promote the truth that Easter is the more significant of the two holidays whenever I am able to do so. I hope that most users here know this already, but if anyone here did not possess that information, I hope that I have been very informative to you with this post.
With such recent events as the death of Trayvon Martin and the massacre in Aurora, Colorado, I wish to express my own opinion on the subject of the private ownership of firearms.
I support the right of ordinary citizens to own firearms for private usage, without exceptions or restrictions. In my mind, acceptable uses of privately-owned firearms include, but are not limited to, hunting of non-human animals, target practice at private clubs, or self-defense. Of course, any of those purposes can be used as excuses for murder, but I believe that that is a risk that must be taken when allowing private ownership and usage of firearms.
I am a believer in the idea that "if guns are outlawed, only outlaws will have guns," meaning that if private citizens are not allowed to legally own firearms, those who seek to use them for violent purposes shall obtain them through whatever means are necessary, putting law-abiding citizens at great risk.
Allowing ordinary citizens to own firearms does incur some risk, but there is risk in nearly any item, such as sharp blades, heavy gardening tools, chemicals, and so forth. The owners of such items must exercise caution and responsibility when using such items, including placing them in secure locations when they are not in use so, that other people cannot find them.
Also, one other important reason for which I support the private ownership of firearms is that average people may need them to defend themselves if this country is ever threatened by a hostile force, either foreign, or domestic. Many of the soldiers who fought in the American Revolutionary War were normal citizens who took action against an oppressive government and used their privately-owned firearms to win their freedom. Therefore, I believe that privately-owned firearms may again be need for such a purpose in the future, and I support the right of the average people to own firearms for that reason.
In summary, that is my opinion on the subject of the private ownership of firearms.
Since abortion is currently a topic of intense debate, I shall state my own opinion of it here.
I support a woman's right to have an abortion, unconditionally, if she wishes to do so; i.e., I am pro-choice. To be more specific, I support a woman's right to have an abortion regardless of any factors, such as the condition of her unborn fetus, the exact point in her pregnancy, or her own physical health.
I believe without any doubt or uncertainty that a woman's body is her own concern, and she her supreme and ultimate authority over it and any conditions that it may have, including pregnancy. While I agree that aborting a fetus late in a woman's pregnancy is slightly disturbing and could be hazardous to the woman's health, it is still her decision to make.
The idea that anyone, whether they are a man or another woman, should have the authority to tell a woman what she can or cannot do with her own body, is one that I find to be both completely irrational and utterly repulsive. No one should be restricted in their control over their own body. Also, some people may object to the killing of a living fetus, but the fetus is within the woman's body, so it is ultimately her decision to do with it what she wishes to do.
If abortions are made illegal, women who seek them shall still do so, but shall be forced to have them performed illegally, which shall incur the risk of a woman seeking a doctor who may not possess the skill that is required for such a delicate task, which could cause extreme problems to the woman's health. Also, while some people may dislike the idea, abortions can be used to prevent the birth of a child whom its mother finds to be undesirable. Keeping abortions legal shall help to decrease the likelihood of children being born with such conditions as Down's Syndrome, which greatly hinders them from functioning as normal members of society, or even as normal human begins.
That is my opinion, and I shall not force anyone to agree with it, but I shall maintain it, for I believe that any person, either male or female, should have supreme authority over their own bodies, and that any attempt to deny a person that authority would be slavery or tyranny.
Often, in both actuality and in fictional stories, I have heard people state that "the ends justify the means," meaning that they can perform whatever actions they wish to perform, even actions that would be perceived by other people to be excessively cruel or harsh, as long as they perform such actions to accomplish, or come close to accomplishing, a goal that they believe to be noble or laudable.
For example, a religious leader may zealously persecute people who are not members of their religion, either forcing them to become members of their own religion or killing them if they do not convert. The leader may believe that those people are evil or destructive to society, but the leader may employ very brutal tactics to eliminate them. Similarly, a police officer may chase after criminal in such a manner, often being as violent and vicious as they are, and thus disrupting society and ruining people's live as much as they do.
I do not at all believe that the ends justify the means; having a goal that is believed to be noble and just does not allow a person to do whatever they wish to do to achieve it. A person's ends are simply words, an abstract concept, while their means are physical, concrete actions. A person can change their end goals to whatever they wish to at any moment, but their means of achieving those goals are far more difficult to alter. It is more likely that a person will alter their end goals to allow the methods that they are using rather than altering their methods to match their goals, a practice that allows for much abuse or twisting of words for the benefit of the individual person.
Therefore, I believe that every person, when pursuing a goal, should employ only methods that are approved by their society and peers and that do not cause other people to suffer unnecessarily. Even if there is a genuine and just cause, I do not believe that potentially improving society is worth the risk of causing even greater harm to society.
Recently, other users have been asking me why I like to write threads that contain controversial content or discuss controversial subjects, so i shall explain why I like to do so in this blog entry here.
The reason for which I challenge and question social mores and taboos is that I wish to encourage people to engage in rational and logical thought about those beliefs. I want people to actually wonder why those beliefs exist, rather than simply accepting them unquestioningly. This is an extension of my general outlook on life for wanting proof of or a reason for everything that I learn and am told by other people. I never do something or accept a belief unless I know why it exists, because I believe that being forewarned is being forearmed.
I do not necessarily oppose certain social beliefs, but I do wish to ensure that people do not adhere to those beliefs unless the understand why they are doing so, so that those people will be more free-minded and not be as susceptible to being influenced by the majority or powerful entities, such as the government or private corporations.
In conclusion, that is the reason for which I like to question social taboos. I hope that this post is informative for any users who read it.
With the recent news that a new law was passed in Japan that will greatly increase the authority of the government to restrict the sale of manga and anime that it believes to contain "offensive content" and even punish the producers of such material, I have decided to give a clear, unambiguous, and definitive portrayal of my opinion of the concepts of freedom of speech and censorship.
I support complete and unrestricted freedom of speech, without any hindrance by the government or private corporations, because the free expression and sharing of ideas is how a society grows and develops. Controlling the sharing of ideas is one of the best methods for controlling people, and I therefore oppose it absolutely.
For the purposes of this discussion, I shall define censorship as "the alteration of a message or other communication by a party other than the producer or intended audience of the media," such as a government or powerful corporation.
I oppose censorship of any type for any reason, because I believe that neither the government nor corporations have the right to control what messages the general people send or receive. If the government or corporations do not like the messages that are being conveyed, that is unfortunate for them, but they must tolerate those messages. If ordinary people are opposed to the content of the media, they simply can ignore those media, and if parents do not wish for their children to be exposed to certain content, then it is their responsibility to monitor what their children read or watch.
Some people believe that people who speak negatively about others should not be allowed to speak, such as Neo-Nazis, the Ku Klux Klan, or those who oppose homosexuality. I disagree with the messages of all those groups, but I unfortunately do not oppose their right to speak them. They have as much right as anyone else to speak their beliefs, and if other people are offended by those beliefs, they must simply ignore such messages.
If the people cannot communicate freely, they cannot grow, develop, or gain greater knowledge, and I do not wish to see such a situation become a reality. The people need to decide for themselves what is best for them and what is not. Therefore, in conclusion, and to reiterate what I have already said, I oppose censorship or any restriction of the communication of ideas and support complete and unhindered freedom of speech and expression.
I am heterosexual, but I accept homosexuality as a natural aspect of this world. I see no reason for homosexual people to be treated poorly because of their preference, and I believe that they deserve the same level of respect that would be given to heterosexual people.
However, one aspect of homosexuality that I cannot accept is the idea that a person's sexual preference is determined from birth, that it is hard-wired into their brain. Some people who dislike homosexuality and homosexual people may say that homosexual people are merely "pretending" to be homosexual, that they can change their preference if they truly wished to do so. Homosexuals counter that argument by saying that they were born the way that they that they cannot change, and that they should be accepted as they are for that reason.
I cannot accept that idea, the idea that a person's sexuality is determined from birth and hard-wired into their brains, because that would require me to accept that my own sexual preference were determined from before I was born. My entire life, my entire worldview, is based on rationality, logic, and a thorough understanding of the world around me. I do not believe anything without tangible and reliable evidence, I must be able to properly understand how something functions before I trust it, and most importantly of all, I believe that intellect, free will, and rationality can overpower instinct and emotion. If I accept that homosexual people were born as they are and did not develop their sexual preference from input as they grew, I will then have to accept that my sexual preferences were ingrained into me and did not develop as I received input from my environment, and that is something I simply cannot accept.
Therefore, as much as I believe that homosexuality should be tolerated and treated as natural, I cannot accept that it, or any sexual preference, is inherent in a person from birth.
The subject of children, or people of uncertain age who appear to be very young, appearing in illustrated or animated erotic media is currently one that is very controversial and debated by many people, so I therefore wish to state my opinions and feelings on it, as well.
I do understand why people become so emotional over this issue, but I thoroughly disagree with the idea that such depictions should be banned. My reason for believing this is that people who complain about this subject are overreacting, and that there is no real reason to complain. Using actual children in erotic media is banned for the reason that children who are not yet physically or psychologically ready to engage in sexual activity may suffer psychological trauma from such an experience, and while I can understand this reasoning, I believe that it does not apply to the realm of illustrated and animated erotica, and I shall explain why.
If I asked a person what this was, they would likely say "that is a pizza." That person would be correct only partially, because technically, that is a photograph of a pizza. It cannot be touched, eaten, or interacted with in the same manner than a normal pizza can be. It exists only in the paper upon which it is printed, or, in the case of being an image on the internet, as digital data; it has no physical substance, and thus cannot be treated in the same manner as a physical pizza.
Similarly, this is not an actual firearm; it is a photograph of a firearm. It cannot be used to injure living beings or damage physical objects. It has no physical substance and thus cannot be interacted with as a normal firearm can be.
According to that logic, depictions of children in illustrated or animated erotic media are not actual children; they are fictional characters who exist only in the media in which they appear, whether it is physical or digital. Because they are not actual people, there is no need to defend them from any perceived "harm" or "abuse." Whatever occurs to them occurs to them only in the world of the fictional media and not in actuality, as is the case with all fictional characters, whether they are adults or children.
Therefore, with this reasoning considered, it would be illogical to ban or outlaw illustrated or animated erotic material that contained explicit depictions of children engaging in sexual activity, because no actual children would be involved in the production of such media. I believe that such media is a form of freedom of expression, and by banning such media, freedom of expression is being restricted, which I strongly oppose, for I support unrestricted freedom of speech and expression at any and all costs.
Some people believe that viewing such media will cause a person to become more likely to attempt to express their feelings and desires toward actual children, but I disagree with that belief. If media with such depictions were banned, such an act would cause a person to become more likely to seek out actual children as an outlet for their desires, for they would not have fictional media as a method for safer relief. By not banning erotic media that contains depictions of children or characters of ambiguous age, people with more esoteric desires can have a safer and non-destructive outlet for their desires that ideally will not lead to any actual children being harmed.
If such media were to be banned, by that same logic, any media with excessive violence, obscene language, or drug use would need to be banned, as well, so that people would not be encouraged to perform such acts. However, that media is currently not banned, and people perform such acts regardless of whether they are exposed to such media, and I therefore believe that there is no clear connection between illustrated or animated depictions of children in erotic media and people actually forcing children to engage in sexual activity with adults.
In conclusion, I disagree with the banning of media that contains illustrated or animated depictions of children involved in sexual situations, because no actual children are involved in the production of such media, and such media is a form of expression, which is protected by the First Amendment to the Constitution of the United States.
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