It was a Southern Maine outdoor venue, and everything went perfectly. The ceremony solemnized their love and the union of two families. Everyone in attendance was happy… and the state of Maine was very happy too. You see, instead of sending a note of congratulations, the state of Maine sent an invoice — demanding a fee for the privilege of falling in love. My brother was required to pay $40.00 for the permission of the state to get married.
By Mason Mohon | @mohonofficial
Everything is scarce. Time, space, human bodies, and all resources are limited. For each of them, there is a finite amount. Because of this finite amount, there are bound to be conflicts over who gets to use what. There will be conflict over who gets to use a piece of land or use a resource.
By Joshua D. Glawson | United States
Conflicts between ‘implied’ and ‘explicit’ consent are numerous and ongoing in the legal world, ordinary life scenarios, and the academic world. At times, the two ideas are seemingly conjoined in the contracts, words, and philosophy of various people, we even sometimes find both ideas residing within our own thoughts and speech as it pertains the very same subject or topic. It is first important to discern the differences between ‘implied’ and ‘explicit,’ and to find out where we stand on certain issues as explicitly as possible. Some of the reasons for finding our explicit thoughts is so that we can better understand our own views, possibly have our views changed for the better, or to have a firm understanding when discussing the particular topic with others so they do not get confused with our own stance.
What does ‘implied’ mean?
For something to be implied is to be implicit; that is to say, the topic, subject, or circumstance is capable of being understood from something else though unexpressed. It can also be a form of potential, where the ‘implied’ standing is involved in the nature or essence of something though not specifically revealed, expressed, or developed. This suggests that not every specification is listed, but there are some cues to indicate the establishment of the consent between two parties.
Some people will naturally confuse the subtle differences between ‘implied’ and ‘tacit.’ The difference is that to be ‘tacit’ it is expressed or carried on without words or speech, or implied or indicated as by an act or by silence but not actually expressed. A ‘tacit’ contract, for example, would be a contract established from non-verbal cues and exchanges, where ‘implied’ could have had some words of exchange.
What are some examples of ‘implied’ consent?
Examples of ‘implied’ in the legal world run amok, but a specific example is found within the US Constitution, (Article 1, Section 8, Clause 18), where there are not enough examples to provide for unknown situations where Congress, according to the Constitution, may require extra powers beyond that which are specifically, i.e. explicitly, spelled out within the legal document. These are known as the “implied powers,” found under the “necessary and proper” clause of the US Constitution. This, by no means, of course, indicates that I support such a clause, rather I am merely pointing out its place within current legal context; and, of course, there are difficulties in comparing this “contract” with private contracts between two tangible, voluntary, free, parties, as opposed to a “contract” set long before our birth without our ability to explicitly consent or negotiate, etc. By merely being a citizen of the US, or arguably even within the US, people are said to be implicitly empowering Congress to act accordingly to fulfill both their explicitly stated powers and their implied, “necessary and proper,” powers.
In the ordinary world of daily life, implied consent can be seen in our ordinary interactions with our friends and loved ones. Such an example may be our exclusivity to joke about certain things, kiss or touch, or being a friend that is able to talk about anything under the sun with, depending on your various relationships with these people. Of course, it would also depend on whether explicit statements have been made to determine certain circumstances or behaviors. Nevertheless, our ordinary and ongoing interactions continue to perpetuate the implied understanding of that relationship between you and the other person.
In the academic world, such as that of political science or philosophy, there are certain implied thoughts and viewpoints that every author and speaker will provide throughout their particular or general work. An example of implied “consent” may be more difficult to find as a general statement, but ‘implied’ thoughts are normal. Some writers in politics or philosophy will align their views with other well-known figures, and the author will continuously hone in on the particular characteristics of that other writer or philosopher and their respective ideas.
What does ‘explicit’ mean?
To be ‘explicit’ means to be fully revealed or expressed without vagueness, implication, or ambiguity, leaving no question as to meaning or intent. ‘Explicit’ is to also be fully developed or formulated, which is why we should continuously push our ideas in order to have them fully developed while ridding ourselves of contradictions, doubts, or inconsistencies.
What are some examples of ‘explicit’ consent?
It is much easier to find examples of ‘explicit’ consent in the world, as they are clearly stated and specified. For example, when people get married, they specify their conditions and with whom. In law, ‘explicit’ consent is found in contract law (K) when terms are specified in the mutual agreement. In politics, much like that of contract law, there are specified conditions. Although, the political world can also be much murkier and fogged by other circumstances making it easier to change later for the good, but mostly for the worse, as history has shown over and over.
How can there be conflicts between ‘implied’ and ‘explicit’ consent, or other variants of the two terms?
One of the most common ways that ‘implied’ and ‘explicit’ get convoluted is when they are in direct conflict with one another. For example, a philosopher may explicitly state that they do not believe in one thing, but their entire work reflects that they, indeed, do ‘implicitly’ support what they are explicitly saying they are against. For example, a philosopher, such as Kant, has stated that his ideas are not subjective, and yet much of what he stated throughout his work was, in fact, subjective to the person living their life (Metaphysics of Morals). Another example is that of French Socialist economist, Thomas Piketty, who specified that he was not a Marxist and in no way supporting Communist rhetoric, yet throughout his work, even in his title, he is espousing Marxist ideology and economic philosophy (Capital in the Twenty-First Century).
Throughout history, this has also occurred, especially under the guise of government. For example, when a politician will ‘explicitly’ say they are not attempting to remove Civil Liberties, but every policy they sign ‘implicitly’ removes Civil Liberties. This has been an ongoing issue throughout politics and history around the world, and specifically throughout US history from its very inception.
What can we do?
The best solution is to first start with our own core beliefs while assessing what is valuable to our standing in the world. If you are truly against theft, murder, rape, molestation, coercion, etc. as I am, analyze all aspects of your beliefs and understanding of the world to purge any contradictory beliefs to those core values. This is all subjective to the person, yes. However, I solemnly believe most people believe these things to be wrong and the antithesis to Liberty and to a purely prosperous life filled with genuine love for fellow humans. Perhaps I am still putting more faith in humanity than I should, but I am confident that putting total control into the hands of a few so-called “elite” is much more dangerous.
Do more to read and think critically about the world around you, the philosophy you read, the statistics presented to you, and be critical of the continued destructive path of more laws. Find ways to solve social and political issues through free and voluntary means, as opposed to force and coercion. Once we have sought our own non-contradictory understanding of how the world is and how it ought to be, we can move forward in our own lives and hope to provide a positive influence on those around us as we continue to help one another.
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By Chandler Miller | USA
With the recent legalization of marijuana in states such as Colorado and Oregon, Jeff Sessions’ push to keep it illegal on a federal level and Vermont’s process to legalize it, the debate about whether or not it should be legal is the center of much controversy and oftentimes carries immense weight in the eyes of individuals. While most very firmly believe that marijuana has the capacity to ruin a user’s life and possibly those around them, many cannot bring themselves to agree with the criminalization of it. There are 3 major issues that encompass the majority of arguments, and they are the morality, economics, and the pragmatism involved. The next 3 paragraphs will tackle each issue.
Firstly, there is the morality involved with marijuana. In order to fully comprehend the morality associated with it one must break down the issue to our country’s core principles and evaluate the problem at an individual level. The United States were founded on the values of preserving an individual’s inherent right to their life, liberty, and property. These rights have been fought for and guaranteed under the United States Constitution, perhaps the most vital document to exist in modern history. The Libertarian Party values these over anything else.
Let’s first see how marijuana pertains to the first human right, life. The right to life is a human being’s basic right to live and die as they so choose and protect themselves as necessary. No individual has the right to end another’s life because that is violating the most basic of moral principles. Just as it is fundamentally immoral to end a life, it is also immoral to dictate what an individual does with their life in order to protect them from themselves. When forcing another human being to destroy or preserve their own individual body on the basis of your own standards by which you treat your own body, you are effectively engaging in the violation of inherent human rights as if they were property. Telling someone what they can and can’t put into their body falls under this. Therefore, what one consumes into their body is of no concern to anyone else.
The second basic human right is liberty. This one is simple. The right to liberty is everyone’s right to do what they like and live as they please without being held constraint by the law as long as it does not infringe on the rights of others or incite violence. When an individual participates in the action of smoking marijuana (on and with their own property), they are not doing so at the expense of another’s rights, the only one they are making a decision for their own self. It is completely ridiculous and hypocritical to assume that it is in any way moral to choose for someone how they live their life when they affect nobody but themselves by making their decision to smoke.
Next, we will move onto the third most basic human right, private property. The right to property is the right for an individual’s peaceful enjoyment of their possessions under the protection of the law. The Constitution clearly states in the 5th Amendment that every single citizen of the United States has a fundamental right to own property and be protected from anyone attempting to arbitrarily deprive them of such property. This includes marijuana. Smoking marijuana is indeed the peaceful enjoyment of one’s property and in no way violates the rights of anyone else.
So, as we see, the legalization of marijuana is particularly moral because it is unethical for it to be illegal by violating all 3 of the most basic human rights of an individual.
Now, we move on to the second and most factual issue associated with marijuana, the economic consequences that come from legalizing it. It is pretty obvious that the legalization of marijuana is bound to bring in tax revenue, create jobs and disperse more money into the economy. According to The Denver Post, in Colorado, marijuana is the fastest growing business sector in the state and is credited with providing 18,000 full-time jobs for its citizens. In the year 2015, marijuana contributed $151.1 million dollars in tax revenue and fees to the state. Additionally, this number is expected to increase to $185 according to mpp.org. Colorado also had the biggest drop in unemployment in history after 3 years of legalizing marijuana, going from 7.9% unemployment to 2.3%. This drop is so significant, Colorado now has the lowest unemployment rates in the nation as of 2017. This is not only the case with Colorado, similar results prove to be consistent with Washington, Oregon, and are expected to do the same in California (significant drops in unemployment rates and huge tax revenue after the legalization of marijuana). These states no longer have to use tax dollars to pay for individuals in prison for marijuana offenses. The Urban Institute Justice Policy Center confirmed that the average annual cost for an inmate in a minimum security prison is $21,000. With 757,969 individuals incarcerated for marijuana abuse, it costs $15,921,896,814 per year to take care of prisoners for committing a petty crime. There is no denying the fact that legalizing marijuana boosts the country and state’s economy. Economic opportunities open up on both government and individual levels once marijuana is legalized.
Lastly, there is the pragmatism and logic. At first glance one may assume the legalization of marijuana would result in increased crime rates and social tension. The practical results of the legalization of marijuana have been very subtle – but definitely not negative. Colorado’s Department of Safety found that since Colorado has legalized weed, they experienced a 2.2% drop in all violent crimes and an 8.9% reduction in property crimes. This is due to the fact that gangs no longer have to compete for drugs, dealers are now reliable, and marijuana is no longer as scarce of a substance to obtain. On top of all of this data, we can reasonably infer the black market is going to crumble because of marijuana’s legalization. Criminals are no longer making money, the economy is. Individuals who smoke weed are no longer viewed as monsters and thrown in jail. These are not bad people, and they should not be punished merely because they feel the need to smoke marijuana. As this article is coming to an end, let’s consider some questions relevant to the issue. Is it moral to criminalize individuals who don’t commit violent crimes or infringe on another’s rights? Is the law always moral? Why should taxpayers have to pay to house, feed, educate and provide healthcare for the individuals sent to jail for such a small crime? From a purely logical and pragmatic standpoint, it is imperative that marijuana is legalized, the pros of marijuana legalization most certainly outweigh the cons.
With morality, economics, logic, and majority support on its side, we need to fight Jeff Sessions’ partisan policies and protect our states’ rights. Call your local representative and tell them why you want to join the fight, share this article on social media and spread the word. Anything, whether it is big or small, makes a difference and could change the lives of millions!