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jimnyc
07-05-2015, 05:35 PM
Rev's been here more than many and hasn't been interviewed yet, so Kathianne reeled him in for a sit down... :)


You’ve been a member of the board for over 5 years, how did you find DP and in your opinion how have you seen it develop over time and where would you like to see it go in the future?

I was/am a member of a Forum about comics. It had a sidebar on politics that went south with a lot of personal drama plus the political parts of the board spilled over in the comics and film parts. So the Board moderators decided to shut down the political area. I'd become pretty attached to the political talk that was reasonable. (the politics of most there was left about 25 regulars on the left and maybe 7 regulars on the right.) but when they shut it down I went searching for another political forum that had the similar size and I ran across DP.

I liked the idea that it was mostly conservative, and fairly small. I got the impression that DP had a more of family feel, where many members had been here for some time and in general agreement and pretty cordial atmosphere. I got the feeling that some people had left and a few other newbies had arrived and changed the vibe. I think I added to that change for better or worse. But over the time I've been here there've been some good times it does bother me that many engaging --if not all pleasant-- members have left or even died. Frankly the tone here recently IMO has been a bit darker and and even less open to honest debate. That I think has to do with some of the players and some topics.

But the only thing that sure in life is change so who knows how thing will go moving forward.

I must say I’ve always found your religious perspective on political issues interesting to me. While I certainly hope that I hold onto my personal moral standards, I can’t say I always consciously apply a morals test to issues. How did religion come to play such a strong role in your life?

The short version is that I was raised by parents that were regular Baptist church goers. I had respect for the people and leaders there as decent and sincere but as a teen I didn't pretend that I "believed" what they taught. I went off to college as a young agnostic asking different people far too many questions they did not want to answer about their faith or their hostile lack of it. Shortly after my graduation I had 2 Evangelical Pentecostal Christian roommates -great guys- who God used to answer many of my questions and doubts over long evening conversations. Frankly they made me very uncomfortable in my chosen spiritual limbo. They told me things that Jesus said that bugged me. Not that I thought that He was wrong, but that I knew I was wrong and He was right. I went to church one day just to be friendly with them and during a sermon I had an experience with God that I could not deny. I asked God's forgiveness and began to devour the Bible and biblical teaching and became a regular church goer. The application to politics to me was not a question. God is my KING. He made the earth and all humans. We are under God whether we know it or believe it... or like it. And his laws and principals works best for people, with the most freedom and least damage. So they should be promoted in ALL lands. But not forced, especially in the spiritual aspects.

The previous question brings to mind a question I always find interesting in interviews or biographies I read, who are 3 of your personal heroes and how have you been influenced by them?

I've mentioned before that I like to give credit where credit is due so there are some of my heroes that i have big disagreements with on some issues but overall i admire extremely. I'll give you more than 3 but brief details why:
Jesus Christ: yep
Daniel the prophet: completely faithful in the thick of a pagan kingdom and bosses.
Roger Williams: Devout Christian Calvinist, friends w those of other views and with natives. helped define Christian separation and law on the ground in Rhode Island.
Ignaz Semmelweis: Dr & Scientist who discovered and promoted life giving scientific truth that other scientist refused to believe despite clear evidence until long after he died.
William Penn: Christian leader who applied faith to life and laws and respected natives and honored his treaties.
John Brown: Calvinist, abolitionist, and a real non-racist in a sea of northern and southern racism.
Harriet Tubman: slave who escaped by herself, and returned again and again to free others. guts and faith is enough.
Gandi: non violent revolution, and anti imperialist, self determination, self reliance, universal respect.
Martin Luther King: non violent in the face of hate, racism, injustice and violence. love for "our poor deluded white brothers", appealed to people’s better nature and best of our faith.
Malcolm X: Honest and acting to the best of his growing and evolving understanding.
Walt Disney: creating from near scratch a vision of how much more a low brow infant medium could do. And creating in real life "magic kingdoms" that others couldn't understand until they SAW it. Helped draw me into the creative profession of graphic design, illustration etc..
My Father: When my mother and he we’re dating she got pregnant. He married her and took care of me my 2 brothers and a dog. Got his parents settled in a house and built a successful Real Estate business that he left for us. I never knew until I was an adult that she was pregnant before marriage. duh count the years.

Having said that I’ve found your posts interesting for years, I must admit that while not always agreeing with all of your stands I believed they were rooted in a strong faith and subsequent moral stands. I’ve also seen a strong conservative bent towards the Constitution and much of the Founder’s underpinning philosophies. If someone were to ask me to describe your politics I’d say something like, ‘Pretty conservative, though often differs from others on military and police, sometimes to the point of stridency.’ How would you describe yourself, politically?

Christain-constitutionalist-neo libertarian-nationaist maybe if I tried to stick some label on it. Not sure that'd help anybody at all.

I got there from an early and interested 7th and 8th grade education in VA history, the Constitution and bill of rights. a HS Gov't teacher broad teachings and assigning The Communist Manifesto, Mein Kampf and the Declaration, Constitution, and Bill of Rights again, reviewing the less than noble sides of American and World History. My Christian conversion, personal experience and family friends history info, families use of guns, my families military service info of war via Viet Nam and WW2 (Uncles and cousins), living in a military area, the Civil Rights struggle, police experiences, the abortion rights movement. my own study.

So at this point in my thinking the principals of Christianity, the Constitution and Bill of Rights apply at all times and in all circumstances.
No matter how terrible. Pearl harbor changed nothing, 9-11 changed nothing, nuclear arms changes nothing. People are still people, nations are still nations. There's no need for serious deviations from our principals and no need for a tons of EXTRA laws to be laid on top of them. Any laws made should be in concert with them. If we want freedom and justice we can't play with the framework.

Concerning the military, well not the military it's more specifically war. Yes I'm basically anti- war by most people's standard. There's the Christian concept of "just war". it's primarily a defensive war. The LAST resort. Yes a RE-active not a PRE-EMPTIVE war, not a war secretly for profit, or for international "police actions". It's the principal most of the west and U.S. conservatives have claimed to embrace for over 1000 years or so.
Briefly:
"The right to go to war concerns the justification that a nation must give in order for it to have a moral right to wage war on another. Augustine laid the basis for four main criteria:
1. Just Authority - is the decision to go to war based on a legitimate political and legal process?
2. Just Cause - has a wrong been committed to which war is the appropriate response?
3. Right Intention - is the response proportional to the cause? i.e. is the war action limited to righting the wrong, and no further? When people speak of "mission creep," this condition is the relevant concern.
4. Last Resort - has every other means of righting the wrong been attempted sincerely so that no other option but war remains?
The conduct of war is clearly a matter of moral concern. Even when a nation is justified in waging war on another, there are moral limits on what it may do in prosecuting the war. Defining and enforcing such limits has been a long a concern for international agreement and law.
1. Proportionality - The proportionality of the use of force in a war. The degree of allowable force used in the war must be measured against the force required to correct the Just cause and limited by Just Intention (see Jus Ad Bellum).
2. Discrimination -The combatants discriminate between combatants and noncombatants. Innocent, nonmilitary people should never be made the target of attacks.
3. Responsibility - A country is not responsible for unexpected side effects of its military activity as long as the following three conditions are met:
(a) The action must carry the intention to produce good consequences.
(b) The bad effects were not intended.
(c) The good of the war must outweigh the damage done by it.
http://oregonstate.edu/instruct/phl201/modules/Philosophers/Augustine/augustine_justwar.html"

I wouldn't call that "Strident" but compared to the neo-con and unspoken imperialist/world police views many conservatives have of the U.S.'s militaries place in the world today I guess it might be.

A couple weeks ago something in one of your posts made me think, ‘Hey, is Rev black?’ Reading more I figured out that you were. Until that point, it just never crossed my mind. I’m not sure if that’s because on most issues we approach them from a common philosophy, but certainly put the differences we have in a new light to me. We all have experiences that contribute to what makes us, us. Having family members in law enforcement for generations has certainly given me a tendency towards giving them the benefit of the doubt, knowing what they give to the community-on duty and off. That doesn’t mean that I’m ignorant of bad cops or even the incompetent ones. Your experiences or influences seem to be very different, do you think you might share the perspective you bring, in general terms?

Never really tried advertise that i was black, but i think a few others knew fairly early on. Concerning police.... personally... thankfully... most of my dealings with police have been pretty decent, some have overstepped the constitution at times but overall most police I've met have been doing a great job. I've mentioned before the experiences my lil brother has had. 3 times having multiple police point guns at him. Once because he drove a car that looked like a car the cops were looking for. There, the police gave conflicting orders that could have easily gotten him killed "Get out to the car Now!! and "Stay in the Vehicle!!" from opposite directions. Another time a cop asked him to remove his seat belt, as he was doing that another cop THOUGHT he was going for a non-existent gun. Both drew weapons on him. And a 3rd time because he saw what he thought was an accident ahead he decided to turn and take another route but cops immediately stopped him a block later pulling weapons. demanding he get out of the car. It was a ...yes unconstitutional.. alcohol checkpoint and they decided he looked "suspicious" and grilled him for 10 minutes on WHY he dared to turn away. "Do you have drugs....". My daughter and I were stopped and the police yanked the door open and stuck his face in because the cop thought my daughter "moved too much". I've been asked to give I.D. on 3 occasions as I took scenic photos in public places. In one case I was almost taken to the station ...for taking pictures... but for my boss vouching for me as a rep of the city gov't by phone. Stories and advice from my cousins, grandfathers, my father, all working people who've never been to prison or jail let me know to be careful around police. There are lots of good ones, but some make mistakes and some are racist or just bad. It only takes one to ruin your life or kill you and there's little to nothing you can do about it. Through the 70s and early 80s I thought police were getting better overall but then it seemed that the US vs THEM mentality that seemed dominant in minority and poor areas was moving to white areas as well. And police seemed to be getting more militarized during the late 80s and onward. To me it's been distressing to see. But I guess many here think that makes me ANTI-police. Because i don't cheer every time i see police. I like to think I'm PRO-GOOD police. But in general IMO there are far too many reports of unfair and abusive policing. Even some police chiefs and police have admitted this. the news recently is full of evidence if people are willing to look. And typical in-house investigations punish few. Power corrupts the best of us and self policing is never a good idea. There were kids in my neighborhood that went to jail for years for things they didn't do. How do I know they didn't do it? because the real perps confessed years later. Also police shouldn't act on what their allowed to do, but what's BEST to do. LEOs often admit an US VS THEM mentality when they are suppose to be public servants . They're not bosses of everyone who they randomly meet who they can demand info and instant military-like obedience for little to no reason. That's classic 'police state' policing. Unless they suspect someone of crimes or there's some REASONABLE threat of imminent danger they have no constitutional authority to order citizens around. They take an oath to uphold and abide by the constitution and laws. As long as they do that, they have my FULL support. If it appears they stray from that, well I point it out and complain. if that's strident then well, ok. I can live with that.

You certainly get along with most of the reasonable folks on the board, though there are times you and Jim really seem to get ‘into it,’ I’ve never understood that. Seems like on many issues, you agree. Somehow you guys often appear to just rub each other the wrong way. Might you have been siblings in a past life? I mean look at Jeff and Jim!

JIM?!
JiM is a scumba.... i mean decent folk. GREAT GUY! -cough- lol!
I can't SPEAK FOR JIM of course. but he's a good soul. His hearts in the right place as far as i can tell. But i'm glad he's not a cop, or in congress.
In my opinion .(..Jim may have STRONG disagreement with my PERSONAL view OF HIS opinions…..) but IT SEEMS TO ME. that Jim is all for law and order in a wild west kind of way.

That's MY PERSONAL characterization of his views . HE may disagree..
He's asserted before that LEOs and officials interpret (I say get to interpret) the laws for them in ways that make things "legal" so it is legal. He may be in FLAMING anger that i'd describe it that way but that's how it comes across to me.

I think A LOT of our conflict come form the clash of our 2 different viewpoints concerning DA LAW and spirals off from there.

When you are not on the message board, what do you do for enjoyment? Any hobbies?

Movies, Sci Fi and action films. Books, some comics too but I gave up my collecting long ago however I still pick up comics from time to time. I do some drawing and painting, some hunting but not as much as i'd like. it's been a couple years now really. Swimming pool with my daughter and hanging at the beach 2-3 times a week this summer.

NightTrain
07-05-2015, 09:32 PM
Great interview!

I've always liked Rev, even though we differ greatly on a couple of topics. I've always admired the way he takes the High Road, even when someone is deliberately insulting him - I readily admit I don't have that quality... too much of a temper, I guess.

And while it's a board joke about Rev's lengthy posts, I've never minded reading them. When someone has given something a great deal of thought about a particular subject, then that's how it's going to be and I've certainly authored a few Walls Of Text around here myself when something gets me going.