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Author Topic: Must new members be 18?  (Read 20165 times)

GimmeFuel

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Must new members be 18?
« on: July 27, 2003, 11:46:43 pm »

I'm 16 years old and I strongly believe in libertarian principles and the FSP. I'm currently registered as a Friend of the FSP, because it says I must be over 18 to register as a member. Is this requirement really necessary? I'll be 18 in a little over a year and a half, so I'll have no problem moving within the five-year timeframe after the Project reaches 20,000.
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rhull

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Re:Must new members be 18?
« Reply #1 on: July 28, 2003, 12:19:43 am »

I'm 16 years old and I strongly believe in libertarian principles and the FSP. I'm currently registered as a Friend of the FSP, because it says I must be over 18 to register as a member. Is this requirement really necessary? I'll be 18 in a little over a year and a half, so I'll have no problem moving within the five-year timeframe after the Project reaches 20,000.


I can't find any age reference in the "Participation Guidelines"

On the sign up page it does "ask that you be over 18 years of age". I interpret that to be a general guideline and not an absolute rule. :)
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larry

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Re:Must new members be 18?
« Reply #2 on: July 28, 2003, 01:57:58 am »

Good Gawd, Young Human You Are, Way Ahead of Most:

If the FSP checks ID, in relation to those who love liberty,
I'm too old  for 'em.

As see it, you have a perfect right to be here, with your vote.

Now, it's true, I agree that checking ID is a good thing, in relation to drugs, alcohol, and tobacco, but you could talk me out of that real easy, if you have a bent to do such.

As I see it, youngster that you are, you have as much right to
be here, with a vote, as this old fart does.

libertarian larry














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Tony

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Re:Must new members be 18?
« Reply #3 on: July 28, 2003, 02:08:18 am »

I noticed that the affadavit that you sign on the ballot affirms that you're 18 or older. :( http://www.freestateproject.org/images/scanned_ballot.jpg

You could sign up after the vote, I'd imagine.
« Last Edit: July 28, 2003, 02:08:49 am by Tony »
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GimmeFuel

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Re:Must new members be 18?
« Reply #4 on: July 28, 2003, 03:08:00 am »

Quote
I noticed that the affadavit that you sign on the ballot affirms that you're 18 or older.  http://www.freestateproject.org/images/scanned_ballot.jpg

You could sign up after the vote, I'd imagine.

Not a chance. Just because I'm younger than most, doesn't mean I will allow them to deny me a voice. I'm going to sign up now, and when my ballot comes attach a letter to it explaining the situation and giving my phone # and e-mail address. I am confident they'll count my vote; any truly freedom-loving organization would not discriminate against people based solely on an arbitrary age minimum.
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larry

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Re:Must new members be 18?
« Reply #5 on: July 28, 2003, 03:31:20 am »

Ohh, My Gawd,

A sixteen-year-old female human writes this list
demanding a right to vote for liberty.  But she is
excluded from voting, so the rules say, just like
rules which originally excluded native Americans,
Women, and Blacks.

Tell ya this folks, if that 16-year-old ain't "granted"
the right to vote for liberty, this nearly Sixty-year-old
ain't gonna vote, either.

Good Gawd, what land have I found myself in??

libertarian larry

Hey "gimmie fuel", you youngster you, you gave this old fart
fuel, just exactly when he needed it.

Old as I am, hanging out with mostly dumb-shits, I will give you all the fuel I can.   Just ask, or I will.

You, 16-year-old, have given me more fuel than I ever expected to encounter.   What can I do to repay you??!!



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GimmeFuel

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Re:Must new members be 18?
« Reply #6 on: July 28, 2003, 03:44:02 am »

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You, 16-year-old, have given me more fuel than I ever expected to encounter.  What can I do to repay you??!!

Well, not referring to me as a female would be a good start. :D

Other than that, no repayment necessary. Your promise to not vote if I can't either has inspired me greatly.

BTW, 'GimmeFuel' comes from the lyrics to a Metallica song, but I feel it is well suited to the pursuit of freedom as well. (Metallica, in case you don't know, is one of them newfangled 'rock' bands. ;))
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Aaron

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Re:Must new members be 18?
« Reply #7 on: July 28, 2003, 03:47:13 am »

Gimme,

I'm with you on this one.  I don't believe in an arbitrary chronological determination of "rights".  If you are cognitively capable of asserting your rights then you should have them at whatever chronological age you happen to be.  If I were you I would sign up now.  There is no "explicit" age minimum yet.  If you sign up before any official response to your question, it will be harder for them to exclude you ex post facto.

Larry,

Just curious, do you have some sort of inside info?  How did you conclude that GimmeFuel is female?
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GimmeFuel

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Re:Must new members be 18?
« Reply #8 on: July 28, 2003, 04:06:30 am »

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Gimme,

I'm with you on this one.  I don't believe in an arbitrary chronological determination of "rights".  If you are cognitively capable of asserting your rights then you should have them at whatever chronological age you happen to be.

My sentiments exactly. At midnight on March 19, 2005 (when I officially turn 18) do I instantaneously go from an idiot kid to an informed, responsible adult, capable of making my own decisions? Or do I mature gradually over the years, and the point at which I reach 'adulthood' cannot be measured by time alone? As is often the case, one choice is reality, the other choice is what 'our' government forces upon us.

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If I were you I would sign up now.  There is no "explicit" age minimum yet.  If you sign up before any official response to your question, it will be harder for them to exclude you ex post facto.

Already done. I'm also going to make it clear in the letter attached to my ballot that if they do not count my vote I will immediately withdraw my membership.
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larry

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Re:Must new members be 18?
« Reply #9 on: July 28, 2003, 04:07:53 am »


Quote
Larry,

Just curious, do you have some sort of inside info?  How did you conclude that GimmeFuel is female?

Uhh, no evidence to go on, except for the sanity spoken.

I find that most males are concerned with the size if their
dicks, with someting to prove.   When I read calm peace-making, I assume it is a female writing.

Now, I'm, not always right about that, but it plays out 90% of the time.

Nice guy you seem to be, I figure you have made peace with
you feminine characteristics.  Good for you.

Now, if you have read him, Amazing is somethng else, again.

Libertarian larry,

Still confused about what sex I want to be, just taking my time,
to decide if I'm a lesbian or a male who loves females.

Either way, I figure I can get a liscense for it, unlike those sick
homos (grin).
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lloydbob1

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Re:Must new members be 18?
« Reply #10 on: July 28, 2003, 06:02:53 am »

Gimme,
While I don't think every family in the FSP should be allowed to register all of their adolesents, to sway the vote, I firmly believe that a 16 year old, who realizes the value of the FSP and seeks membership on their own should be allowed to join.
Lloyd
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JasonPSorens

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Re:Must new members be 18?
« Reply #11 on: July 28, 2003, 08:27:23 am »

We have a policy not to sign up members under 18 for several reasons:

1) Even though many individuals under 18 are fully capable of making their own decisions, even these are at a time in their life when it will be difficult to make a long-run commitment like this one.  In college, you come across new ideas, choose new career paths, and you may decide you want to do something totally different with your life.  Even if you think the Free State idea is a great one, tying yourself to it before you've begun your independent life doesn't seem like a credible commitment.

2) The publicity aspects of this are important.  "Oh my God, they want our children!" is a possible media response if we were signing up people under 18.  Especially considering that 18 is the age of making contracts in our states - even though this isn't a legal contract, we want people to treat it almost like one.

3) There's a possibility for families to try to sway the vote this way.  They could sign up all the kids in the house and have them all vote the way their parents want them to.

4) We've already had problems with teenagers and parents coming into conflict over whether the teenager should be considered a member or not.  After informing them that you had to be 18 to be a member, that resolved the issue.

I'm aware that there are many people under 18 who are capable of making decisions like this one, and GimmeFuel sounds like such a person.  But how can we make exceptions?  Any ground is going to be arbitrary.  Do we make you a member if you say you really, really want to be one?  Do we set a lower age limit?  Or do we let 12 year olds in?  I'm aware that the current way of doing things is unsatisfactory, but so is every alternative!  The age limit shouldn't be an undue burden, because you can always sign up once you turn 18.

If there were some way the legal system recognized emancipation before 18, we could rely on that.  But we simply don't have the resources to determine which legal minors are capable of making this commitment and which are not.  Given that, all of the above problems follow with a policy that admits legal minors.
« Last Edit: July 28, 2003, 08:29:15 am by JasonPSorens »
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rhull

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Re:Must new members be 18?
« Reply #12 on: July 28, 2003, 12:31:47 pm »

We have a policy not to sign up members under 18 for several reasons:

1) Even though many individuals under 18 are fully capable of making their own decisions, even these are at a time in their life when it will be difficult to make a long-run commitment like this one.  In college, you come across new ideas, choose new career paths, and you may decide you want to do something totally different with your life.  Even if you think the Free State idea is a great one, tying yourself to it before you've begun your independent life doesn't seem like a credible commitment.

Considering many 16 year olds are mapping out their future lives by making college decisions, joining the military, etc., pledging to join the FSP and move to whatever state in two years is not any less credible a commitment.

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2) The publicity aspects of this are important.  "Oh my God, they want our children!" is a possible media response if we were signing up people under 18.  Especially considering that 18 is the age of making contracts in our states - even though this isn't a legal contract, we want people to treat it almost like one.

And this would be a bad thing? The message of freedom seems to resonate better with the younger generation. An article like that would probably generate a lot of signups.

As you pointed out its not a legal contract. This entire project is based on the honor system. I don't see how the generalization can be made that someone under 18 is less honorable that someone over 18.  

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3) There's a possibility for families to try to sway the vote this way.  They could sign up all the kids in the house and have them all vote the way their parents want them to.

Yes, they could do that with or without the under 18 policy in place.

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4) We've already had problems with teenagers and parents coming into conflict over whether the teenager should be considered a member or not.  After informing them that you had to be 18 to be a member, that resolved the issue.

It was resolved for the parents and the project, not the teenager.

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I'm aware that there are many people under 18 who are capable of making decisions like this one, and GimmeFuel sounds like such a person.  But how can we make exceptions?  Any ground is going to be arbitrary.  Do we make you a member if you say you really, really want to be one?  Do we set a lower age limit?  Or do we let 12 year olds in?  I'm aware that the current way of doing things is unsatisfactory, but so is every alternative!  The age limit shouldn't be an undue burden, because you can always sign up once you turn 18.

There are exceptions made for every rule and policy, the statists do it all time. :) Since this is a statist policy which has been adopted by the FSP I don't seem a problem with making exceptions to it.

I haven't been able to find this policy on the web site. I've always thought the "Participation Guidelines" were all inclusive. Could you point me to where I might find policies which are not included in the participation guidelines.

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If there were some way the legal system recognized emancipation before 18, we could rely on that.  But we simply don't have the resources to determine which legal minors are capable of making this commitment and which are not.  Given that, all of the above problems follow with a policy that admits legal minors.

There is. Some states have an emancipation provision for those under 18. But since the "Statement of Intent" is not a legal contract the whole "legal" arguement is moot.

I think for the FSP to have a policy in place to exclude seekers of freedom based on anything is contradictory and hypocritical.

On a side note, if GimmeFuel had kept his trap shut about his age, there would not have been an issue. So this policy is actually encouraging dishonesty within a project based on the honor system.

 
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GimmeFuel

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Re:Must new members be 18?
« Reply #13 on: July 28, 2003, 03:50:07 pm »

2) The publicity aspects of this are important.  "Oh my God, they want our children!" is a possible media response if we were signing up people under 18.

What happened to the idea that there is no bad publicity? Some will read the article and think we're brainwashing little kids, but those are the same types of people who will disapprove of the Project no matter how they hear about it.

However, others who read that article will approve of the FSP allowing anyone freedom, despite their age. Those people will then be more likely to visit the website and join.

Especially considering that 18 is the age of making contracts in our states - even though this isn't a legal contract, we want people to treat it almost like one.

So I can't legally enter into a contract, therefore I'm incapable of holding any serious obligation? That seems to be what you're saying, and it doesn't make any sense at all.

3) There's a possibility for families to try to sway the vote this way.  They could sign up all the kids in the house and have them all vote the way their parents want them to.

There's no denying there's a downside to having no age minimum. The only question is, which downside is preferable: having member's kids signed up to skew the vote, or disallowing rational, thinking people like me a vote based solely on age?

4) We've already had problems with teenagers and parents coming into conflict over whether the teenager should be considered a member or not.  After informing them that you had to be 18 to be a member, that resolved the issue.

As rhull succinctly put it, the issue is not resolved for the teenager.

I'm aware that there are many people under 18 who are capable of making decisions like this one, and GimmeFuel sounds like such a person.  But how can we make exceptions?  Any ground is going to be arbitrary.

I can just picture someone before the 19th Amendment was passed saying something very similiar to that:
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I'm aware that there are many women who are capable of making decisions like this one, and (so and so) sounds like such a person.  But how can we make exceptions?  Any ground is going to be arbitrary.

Suppose the FSP had happened earlier, before women and blacks had the right to vote. Would you have stuck with the law and not allowed those groups a vote in the FSP? Or would you have showed that you truly believe in freedom for all by giving them a voice? The choice is obvious now, but at the time it would have been easy to dismiss them, just as you're dismissing me now.

How about we allow anyone to vote, regardless of age, the same way we already allow them to regardless of race, gender, etc? That doesn't seem arbitrary at all to me.

Do we make you a member if you say you really, really want to be one?  Do we set a lower age limit?  Or do we let 12 year olds in?  I'm aware that the current way of doing things is unsatisfactory, but so is every alternative!

Yes, there are disadvantages with any way. But considering the Project is founded on democratic principles, which do you think is better - making a rule that lets more people have a right to vote, or making a rule that allows fewer people that right?

The age limit shouldn't be an undue burden, because you can always sign up once you turn 18.

Yes, I can. But then, I would have missed out on the chance to participate in the state vote. That seems like quite an undue burden to me.

If there were some way the legal system recognized emancipation before 18, we could rely on that.  But we simply don't have the resources to determine which legal minors are capable of making this commitment and which are not.  Given that, all of the above problems follow with a policy that admits legal minors.

You don't have the resources to determine which legal majors are capable of making this commitment either. There will be some people above 18 who will not fulfill their promise to the Project. There will be some people below 18 who will not do so, also. Should the rights of those under 18 who will fulfill their promise be abridged for nothing more than this reason?

There are exceptions made for every rule and policy, the statists do it all time. :) Since this is a statist policy which has been adopted by the FSP I don't seem a problem with making exceptions to it.

If we make an exception to this rule, as the statists do, we are down to the statists' level. Do not make exceptions for me; either change the rule for everyone or change it for no one.
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JasonPSorens

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Re:Must new members be 18?
« Reply #14 on: July 28, 2003, 04:17:57 pm »

I haven't been able to find this policy on the web site. I've always thought the "Participation Guidelines" were all inclusive. Could you point me to where I might find policies which are not included in the participation guidelines.

http://www.freestateproject.org/faqs.htm
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