NIMBY is Not Democratic


Two paradigms

The facts

Recently a serial rapist was released from prison having served his time and given a series of requirements to live by that hopefully will prevent him from reoffending. He has chosen a community in BC in which to reside and the residents have complained that they do not want him in thier community.

The first Paradigm

Bleeding hearts more concerned with prisoner and convict rights have helped produce a system which fails to keep violent crimials behind bars or terminate thier nasty existance. This system has released a violent offender and allowed him to live with civilized humans, endangering the community and especially the women of the community.

The second paradigm

Vengeful rednecks have rejected the rights of a prisoner who has served his sentence and is required to live under a strict regime to prevent reoffending. He is not being allowed to live out the rest of his life with out harrasement. The community in which he has chosen to live, has rejected the courts ruling that he is no longer a threat, and has does not trust that penal and police enforcement can monitor his activities and prevent him from reoffending.

The truth

Fear is acceptable this man has commited heinous acts. Distrust is also acceptable, as many sex offenders are repeat offenders. However, trust in the rule of law is the basis of society. If the legal system has approved this man’s release, then he is a free man, except for any restrictions the courts may apply to him. If the system has ceased to protect the public, given that the system is democratically elected, who do we blame but ourselves.

We place our trust in the decisions of the majority when we accept democracy. This includes the edicts of the legal system that democracy has created. Democracy fails when we allow the minority to change the rules.

Conclussion
Not In My Back Yard (NIMBY) is not democratic

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6 thoughts on “NIMBY is Not Democratic

  1. NIMBY efforts are basically selfish in nature, demonstrating a disdain for others and an intense desire to avoid ‘paying’ one’s ‘fair share’ of societal obligations.

    That said, bill I can understand when parents fearing for the safety of their children disapprove the bureaucratic placement into their neighborhoods of potentially cruel or dangerous individuals. Also, bill, to expect them to blindly support an increasingly dysfunctional legal system seems a little cold.

    But once they’ve expressed their viewpoint and that legal system has had a chance to reconsider, then quite obviously the sanctity of “the law” must be supported, even if the greater societal good is not. Their only other option then is to move away.

    Cheers

  2. Democracy is rule by the will of the people. Not rule by the prat who got the most votes and lied through his teeth to get those votes.
    If the majority of a community do not want a specific person to live in their community then democracy would uphold their democratic right to move him on by whatever means works permanently. Bang.

  3. ‘Not in MY back yard’ is indeed undemocratic but ‘Not in OUR backyard’ is more democratic than a legal ruling made without the peoples specific consent. We do not vote for politicians to make their laws for us, we vote for them to make the sound, responsible law we need to prevent us becoming victims or living in fear.

  4. One of the major problems with ‘pure’ democracy is highlighted by the comment from ‘anonymous’ and also touched on briefly by crowbard.

    In this way. ‘Pure’ democracy is too easily misconstrued. ‘The People’, including ‘anonymous’ and this writer, should NOT have the ability under law to simply have a ballot and then “move people on” if the vote result supports it. To follow precisely the ebb and flow of fickle tides of public opinion on all matters would be madness. What if the next election would go with the opposite result? How could an electorate restore rights already taken away? No, that situation would be silly. Even if at first glance it seems desireable to do so. And thus we have “laws”.

    So we should be voting for people to intelligently and contemplatively represent us as they consider “laws” applying to the entire body politic – not just “laws” for our own personal benefit.

    Doing their best on this last part is what – in my view – separates true statespersons from political hacks. And voters who fail to understand and support this difference between candidates are not only stupid and lazy, but incredibly selfish. Elections should not be about “what’s best for us”. They should focus on “what’s best for our country”.

    The ‘rule of law’ does require a certain level of citizen inconvenience, at times. If it didn’t, liberty would probably be pretty worthless.

    I may have to concur with bill on this a little too much for comfort, but when he’s right, (which to me may not be very often), he’s ‘right’.

    Cheers

  5. Both Crowbard and anon are describing a discontent with the democratic process that we have created, because they beleive that politically it fails. As anon pointed out, with the comment, “Democracy is rule by the will of the people. Not rule by the prat who got the most votes and lied through his teeth to get those votes.”

    The problem is we believed those lies at least enough to elect these so called Prats.

    However in saying that the democracy is the will of the people he is only partially correct. Democracy as it is practiced is representative democracy allowing for the Prats that anon discribes. His problem should be that the type of democracy we see today is liberal democracy (IMHO as superior form of democracy)Liberal democracy is a representative democracy along with the protection of minorities, the rule of law, a separation of powers, and protection of liberties (thus the name liberal) of speech, assembly, religion, and property.

    What Anon and Crowbard might advocate is something more akin to Direct democracy a political system where the citizens vote on major policy decisions.

    The only problem with direct democracy is it becomes too difficult to function on a scale above the state or province level. California however is getting closer to it and this is odd because California is considered a liberal state, by those that might advocate opinions such as anon and Crowbard. Some of Canada’s western provinces have had success with forms of Direct Democracy.

  6. Good comments. As a reminder, though, the US is actually by law and form a “democratic Republic”. But since the MSM doesn’t like that inconvenient fact, it is seldom mentioned by them.

    The problem with that governmental form – and California could be used as a prime example of what can happen to cause that type of government to go awry – it depends mightily on four critical elements, the diligence, intelligence and unbiased judgement of informed voters. When any of those factors fail, things can come apart. When two or more fail, the process speeds up immensely. In California, I submit at least three of the four aspects have, for all intents and purposes, failed.

    As a result we have uninformed voters electing unqualified representatives whose only ambition is to not make “waves” so as to risk losing the next election. Here the 20/80 ratio has probably reached 5/95 proportions. And that is simply catostrophic.

    To many it has become time to leave this delightful but detiorating wasteland, I fear, and begin life anew where hope, integrity and good will still might exist. So I probably shall.

    Cheers

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