Sunday, January 17, 2016

Message to readers ed 2/13/16

This blog has developed as events occurred, during the development of a theory for establishing a civic people. This post is intended to empower readers to efficiently choose essays of interest.
The purpose of this blog is to promote civic morality. "Civic" refers to the human connections that are necessary because the persons live during the same years in the same places. A civic people collaborate to establish personal liberty with civic well-being. Well-being means both 1) serenity with privately pursuing personal interests that involve no real harm and 2) consciously collaborating in civic connections so that others may pursue personal interest that involve no real harm. This is a paradox in that it perhaps denies the traditional civic object, the overall good, yet makes it possible to fulfill individual overall good. There exists evidence that neither opinion nor its progeny, religion, can provide the bedrock the people will accept to establish civic morality, because there is ample diversity of opinion and religion. A civic people employ discovered physics--which is energy, mass and space-time from which everything including opinion emerges--to understand how humans may benefit from the discoveries.  For example, people don't lie so that they can communicate. People don't run red lights so they can trust green ones. The interrelated ethical system, physics-based ethics, may be used to minimize human loss and misery and avoid annihilation. Understanding the physics of a civic issue, a person is both free and better informed to responsibly innovate when he or she sees possibilities for a better personal life. With such personal liberty, a civic people is empowered to expand the civic ethical system without real harm.
Reviewing the body of essays, the blog started with a proposal for Baton Rouge residents to use the preamble to the constitution for the USA to negotiate civic morality instead of dividing the city, a proposal that is now sidelined yet alive. Later, we opposed Louisiana legislation to establish a local surrogacy industry that would compromise the dignity and equality of children and children to be born, and found ourselves in the same-sex marriage debate--a world of opposing mendacities. On February 19, 2014, our ignorance about black liberation theology’s possible influences was somewhat reduced, surrounding a visit and speech by the Rev. Dr. Jeremiah Wright, Jr. After the Charlie Hebdo terror, we addressed the art of taunting martyrs. Over two years time, we collaborated at under ten civic meetings--at libraries, at Louisiana State University and in private, and the preamble-promotion evolved. A theory for establishing A Civic People of the United States emerged, and the developments have far surpassed the intentions of some of the essays, yet it is all interwoven. We work to make civic collaboration as easy as possible and therefore promote explicit distinction between civic connections and social privacy, where "civic" represents public interaction and "social" represents preferential or class associations.
           Let me explain the folders. "Discussion" refers to background information for the next library meeting, always changing. "Applications" refers to uses of the theory for a civic people. "Archives" refers to old library meetings and other records. "Louisiana" refers to issues specific to this state in the USA, yet there are shared issues, such as racism. "Modern Writers" refers to comments on related, published essays. "Nine Goals" refers to the literal preamble to the constitution for the USA. "Promote" refers to essays to promote use of the preamble or use of physics-based ethics. "Reference" refers to related letters-to-the editor or other essays from my past.

 A lifetime quest
First, what you are reading is collaboration about the later thirty to forty years of earnest work to read and answer sequential questions 1) having discovered (thanks to minimal world travel and my openness) that I am not satisfied with the religion Mom and Dad wanted me to have--without objection to their religions for them, what does it mean according to my fidelities to have been born into this world, and 2) what does it mean to be born in the USA? I satisfied myself about the first question: I am a person among the person-hood of humankind and prefer not to reduce my association again in this lifetime, accepting that 1) I am both by birth and by preference an American citizen and 2) do not want to be a party to force except in self-defense. Unlike Mahatma Gandhi, I do not think my opinion is justification for any type of self-denial such as starvation: life is too precious to forego living in order to make a point. To put it another way, if I have a good idea, people will have to see that freely--without any coercion by me. I realize I am not free, so I focus on being of the USA and of the world. I stopped contributing to TED conversations, wanting to discuss the preamble to the constitution for the USA and am still too dedicated to that effort to return to TED.

 Secession in my hometown!
I had written during the prior decade about the preamble to the USA when, in fall of 2013, within my home town a faction proposed to divide the city. Some of the wealthier and whiter inhabitants, in unincorporated Baton Rouge, seek to secede as St. George City so as to gain preferential control of public education there after about seven decades of ruinous federal influence.
I think it is right for parents to do all they can to ensure that their children obtain the best possible understanding—the basic facts they need to enter adulthood with the intent and preparation for a full life, but I am not in favor of dividing a civic people of Baton Rouge. Since my first post, February 9, 2014, the political power struggle has preserved the city but furthered the divide. Yet I have not given up.

 Opposing the establishment of a local surrogacy industry
During the same time, I became an opponent against Louisiana legislation drafted to make gestational surrogacy a civic responsibility rather than the private purview of the couple who want to employ the emerging surrogacy industry. The practical motive is to set up the surrogacy industry in Louisiana; surrogacy contracts are completed in other states. The worst justification I’ve read for forcing a conceived child through gestational surrogacy is to avoid stretch marks on the biological mother’s body. I think such moral/immoral innovations should remain private contracts rather than civic responsibility.
Initially, I did not realize it, but I was entering concurrent, covert, genetic surrogacy or surrogate motherhood debates to empower same-sex partnerships in third-party procreation. Surrogate motherhood is practiced against public policy in Louisiana.
 I was in a dialogue of opposing mendacity. For example, opponents of gay unions refer to the practice as an abomination, whereas any adult partners who enjoy mutual appreciation and commitment with real no harm practices should be celebrated by a civic people. However, my moral objection, in both surrogacy cases is the systematic, opinion-based subjugation of the dignity and equality of the intended child through adult contracts. The same-sex crowd bitterly opposed my ideas, unaware of my 2004 essay extolling personal, same-sex commitments, which is now posted on this blog. My letter states appreciation for same-sex monogamy, a private discovery brought about by private possibilities. Yet the biology of same-sex sex precludes private procreation—requires at least a third party for procreation. Any woe that the US Supreme Court has invited by ignoring the dignity and equality of a child-to-be-born will emerge. Also, monogamy may rise to due recognition for its benefits, which have been perhaps unintentionally repressed by religious doctrine (Mark 10:7). I am too ignorant to speculate about what mitochondrial DNA teaches regarding blood lines, but everyone alive is kin to one woman who lived more than 140,000 years ago perhaps 5% in the past of the human timeline. Apparently, blood-lines of her peers did not survive the environmental evolution and cultural evolution they faced.

 The question of gods with skins
During the same time span, I learned of black liberation theology, an overtly covert debate. Overt in that much information about it is on the internet, yet no one I know acknowledges its existence or its possibilities: woe. During the same time I learned of a god with red skin. A god with skin is an interesting art debate, but has little to offer the god hypothesis. Yet some theologians and politicians preach god-skin as a vehicle for supremacy.

 Taunting should be held accountableTaunting people who are trained to be "martyrs"Within a day of the dreadful Charlie Hebdo shootings I published my opposition to taunting martyrs. Even the NFL does not allow players to taunt each other without being called to account! Freedom of expression is critical to humanity, but that freedom must not be abused. Just as crying "Fire" in a theater seems immoral, taunting trained martyrs seems immoral.

 Unexpected civic collaboration (I learned more than I espoused)
Lastly, frustrated with both fruitlessly contacting Baton Rouge could-be civic leaders, as well as ridicule in online debates, I started this blog to promote use of the preamble to the constitution for the USA to establish civic morality (although I would not have written it that way then). My good friend Hugh Finklea and daughter Holly joined the effort. We intended to set aside for each year, starting 2014, the 1787 draft constitution's Ratification day, June 21, and its signing day, Constitution Day, September 17 for promotion, celebration and practice of We the People of the United States. The candid debates that occurred both in the library meetings and during external communications produced a theory for collaboration by a civic people, posted on 7/12/2015. About thirty people are acknowledged on the meeting presentation slides, available at EBRP Main Library; contact Mary Stein. The bedrock of civic morality perhaps is physics, and human discovery of the emergent benefits is physics-based ethics. Physics is energy, mass and space-time from which everything including opinion emerges. Space-time is the combination length, width, height and time. The key transition to civic ethics comes at the beginning of life on earth, which for some thinkers invokes the god hypothesis.
We think publication and promotion of the distinction "a civic people" as a portion of "we, the people," is valuable in itself. A civic people do not promote incarceration of the people, but some people are not no-harm such as to avoid subjugation to the law: "the people" are divided according to the practice of real harm, such as murder, spread of disease, and such civic issues.
The posts in this blog offer only piecemeal aspects involved in the above mentioned events, to illustrate applications of a culture of a civic people. Other work prevents new essays at the pace upheld in 2014-15, but new essays will come. For example, a post on fidelity to physics, as it is essential to human efficiency if not survival; we see that every day.
We revise obsolete posts that have been recently viewed. If someone reads an old post, I first check the title for “ed” or such and then check the revision date. If the post is sorely obsolete, I immediately update it to current thoughts, without changing the purpose, organization, and original references. I see on preparing this message that I need to re-think the folder labels in the blog.

 Other work venues and improving this one
Lastly, I am engaged in vital, instructive, voluntary debate in other venues, including personal conversation. The collaboration changes the posts in this blog. Even someone's harsh rebuke expresses collaboration to me.
I encourage readers to comment on this blog, without hesitation. I will think and respond to the concern you express, sometimes to correct uncertainty I may have introduced and sometimes to appreciate that your point of view changed my opinion--to express agreement. Either way, the post will be improved by your collaboration. If someone asks for an essay, I will be delighted to reply in due time.
I hope this saves future readers’ time, and I invite requests for further explanations.

 This effort needs a CEO
Lastly, we are working for possibilities in perhaps history’s most difficult task: dispelling the myth that most of the people do not want to live peaceably. Perhaps past groups have imagined 100% peaceful inhabitants, but our goal is 70 % of living adults collaborating for personal liberty with civic well-being. It has not happened after some seven trillion man-years of human experience, perhaps because no one has ever made a concrete proposal for how to routinely accomplish person-to-person justice: justice is required for liberty.
The people who collaborated at library meetings in Baton Rouge over the last couple years created the ten-point proposal in the 7/12/2015 post. We want to continue to collaborate on that theory. However, an effort like this needs two major functions: someone to keep advancing the possibility and someone to manage the conversations for action (key-words: action and possibility, borrowed from Fernando Flores's writing). We hope someone will come forward to take the CEO and COO rolls for A Civic People of the United States, perhaps beginning with the Baton Rouge team. I can collaborate but cannot manage.

Copyright©2016 by Phillip R. Beaver. All rights reserved. Permission is hereby granted for the publication of all or portions of this essay as long as this complete copyright notice is included. Revised, February 13, 2016