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Thread: Are you a Citizen or a Civilian?

  1. #1
    Campaign Veteran since9's Avatar
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    Are you a Citizen or a Civilian?

    While I'm not a die-hard open carry fan, per se', I do OC on a regular basis as a way of letting others know they too have the right to keep and bear arms here in Colorado, as well as sending a message to any bad guys which might be watching, namely, that there are those of out here who are both armed and ready to defend life and property, should the occasion arise. It has absolutely nothing to do with bravado, but everything to do with a vow I took when I joined the military more than 21 years ago.

    As Heinlein (a science fiction author) put it: "A citizen accepts personal responsibility for the safety of the body politic, of which he is a member, defending it, if need be, with his life. The civilian does not." - Source

    I like the way he puts it! How about you?
    The First protects the Second, and the Second protects the First. Together, they protect the rest of our Bill of Rights and our United States Constitution, and help We the People protect ourselves in the spirit of our Declaration of Independence.

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    Regular Member grinner's Avatar
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    From Wikipedia: A body politic refers to "the people of a nation, state, or country considered collectively as a body of organized citizens".

    I don't accept personal responsibility for the Body Politic's safety. That's their responsibility. I do, however, take an active stance in ensuring that a person has a legal right to self defense. What they do with that right is their choice.

    Would I defend a stranger with my life? Maybe. Depends on the situation. My default answer is "no", however I can think of situations where I would. It seems the line is somewhere in the neighborhood of stopping intolerable evil where I couldn't live with myself if I did nothing.

    I do consider myself an active citizen however, for what it's worth.

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    I don't like Heinlein's definition. It always struck me as something that indoctrination would be used to implant into one's psyche.

    I am a citizen because the Founders built this wonderful Republic into which I was lucky enough to be born and in which I have been wise enough to remain.

    I am a civilian because I retired from military service, am not a firefighter, am not an EMT, and am not a LEO.

    I believe that we have a moral responsibility to those around us that could range from opening a door for them, to feeding them, to defending their lives and limbs.

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    I thought that was "Stormship Troopers"? Love the bugs, hated the sequels.
    Was doogie howzer cast for a gays in military jab? Man they overwork the medics in that movie.

    I do not believe we must help at the point of a gun myself though. A free man has the right to be an *ss as much as an *ss does. He should not be stopped from protecting himself from those that wish him harm regardless of citizenship. I would rather stand and fight with a dozen escaped refugees from the iron curtain, than fight beside BHO and Holder who would sell me out to save themselves in a heartbeat.

    I think it is more the reverse. A person with good character makes a citizen.

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    How does that saying go?

    Armed we are citizens, unarmed we are subjects...

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    Campaign Veteran GLOCK21GB's Avatar
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    we are now all SUBJECTS, to a tyranical monarchy.
    http://youtu.be/xWgVGu3OR4U AACFI, Wisconsin / Minnesota Carry Certified. Action Pistol & Advanced Action pistol concepts + Urban Carbine course. When the entitlement Zombies begin looting, pillaging, raping, burning & killing..remember HEAD SHOTS it's the only way to kill a Zombie. Stockpile food & water now.

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    On another forum once I was disappointed at how many people said if they saw a brutal crime taking place and they where armed they WOULD NOT get involved more than just being a good witness.

    While I do not feel a duty to protect everyone, I like to think I would step up and help someone.

    This scenario comes to mind, someone should have shot this loser: http://www.buffalobore.com/index.php...ct_detail&p=69

    This guy suffered long term damage & some brain damage IIRC and the ex con got sent to jail and the woman who started it all got probabtion IIRC.

  8. #8
    Regular Member sudden valley gunner's Avatar
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    I'm an individual.

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    Regular Member Gunslinger's Avatar
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    I'll never be a subject.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Gunslinger View Post
    I'll never be a subject.
    Less, anonymouse

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    Quote Originally Posted by eye95 View Post
    I am a civilian because I retired from military service.
    But don't forget that as a military retiree you are a member of the "Retired Reserve" and subject to recall to active duty by request or involuntarily.

    The real issue here is this crazy notion espoused by some civilian police officers and forces that they are not "civilians." Police officers are civilians unless they are members of the military.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Mike View Post
    But don't forget that as a military retiree you are a member of the "Retired Reserve" and subject to recall to active duty by request or involuntarily.

    The real issue here is this crazy notion espoused by some civilian police officers and forces that they are not "civilians." Police officers are civilians unless they are members of the military.
    Every definition of civilian I have ever read has excluded LEOs and firefighters. Some exclude EMTs.

    BTW, my retired reserve commitment ended about 6 years ago.

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    I always liked "the civil life".

    My favorite sociologist, Ferdinand Tönnies wrote Community and Civil Society, Gemeinschaft und Gesellschaft.

    ETA much later: Look to the etymology of 'villain'. Or to the conflicts between 'townies' and 'the gowns'.
    Last edited by Doug Huffman; 08-21-2010 at 05:48 PM.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Mike View Post
    SNIP The real issue here is this crazy notion espoused by some civilian police officers and forces that they are not "civilians."
    I agree it is crazy. But, of course they consider they are not civilians. They style themselves along military lines in other areas, too. Ever notice the police chief in Ffx Co is titled a colonel? And, of course, police all over the place are Sergeants and Lieutenants and Majors, and whatnot.

    And, lets not forget the chevrons on sleeves and bars on collars. And, for the everyday uniforms, the pre-sewn creases in shirts. I will only mention in passing the para-military garb we increasingly see on street cops--combat boots, bloused trouser legs, thigh pockets on trousers, etc. And, never mind the SWAT teams in battle-gear and armored personnel carriers.

    Also, we have extensive evidence that some police consider themselves above the law and protect each other like a self-protective fraternity.

    So, it is no surprise that some police think of themselves as "not civilians".
    Last edited by Citizen; 08-21-2010 at 06:51 PM.

  15. #15
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    Quote Originally Posted by eye95 View Post
    I don't like Heinlein's definition. It always struck me as something that indoctrination would be used to implant into one's psyche.
    +1 on the indoctrination problem. You strike right at the core of socialism--the individual exists only for the benefit of the state.

    Which is really nothing more than a perversion of the truth. We all live as individuals, but most also want to see others in their group live well and be prosperous.

    The true socialist subverts the individual and perverts the basic desire for groups to prosper into an enforced obligation to support the group at the expense of the individual. Of course, what really happens is the elite socialists end up being the beneficiaries of all this self-sacrifice on the part of individuals.

    The trick is to realize that Heinlein left enough wiggle room to counter the indoctrination angle. Heinlein supported socialism, but I do not know if he dropped it by the time he wrote that quote. For the moment, I prefer to think that what he is saying is that a citizen has enough character to also feel a sense of responsibility to defend society--his fellow man.

  16. #16
    Regular Member sudden valley gunner's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Citizen View Post
    I agree it is crazy. But, of course they consider they are not civilians. They style themselves along military lines in other areas, too. Ever notice the police chief in Ffx Co is titled a colonel? And, of course, police all over the place are Sergeants and Lieutenants and Majors, and whatnot.

    And, lets not forget the chevrons on sleeves and bars on collars. And, for the everyday uniforms, the pre-sewn creases in shirts. I will only mention in passing the para-military garb we increasingly see on street cops--combat boots, bloused trouser legs, thigh pockets on trousers, etc. And, never mind the SWAT teams in battle-gear and armored personnel carriers.

    Also, we have extensive evidence that some police consider themselves above the law and protect each other like a self-protective fraternity.

    So, it is no surprise that some police think of themselves as "not civilians".
    My local police department was very angry (some getting irate) I wouldn't refer to the officer who held me at gun point as "lieutenant". Every time I said officer Slodysko they'd try to correct me and say "lieutenant", I finally told them "he is not my lieutenant, he is my employee". I really find it distasteful they try to exert "authority" they don't have over us and expect us to address them as superiors, when the reality is if I am not committing a crime and they have no RAS, they are my 'servants' hired to do a job with my taxes.

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    Quote Originally Posted by sudden valley gunner View Post
    My local police department was very angry (some getting irate) I wouldn't refer to the officer who held me at gun point as "lieutenant". Every time I said officer Slodysko they'd try to correct me and say "lieutenant", I finally told them "he is not my lieutenant, he is my employee". I really find it distasteful they try to exert "authority" they don't have over us and expect us to address them as superiors, when the reality is if I am not committing a crime and they have no RAS, they are my 'servants' hired to do a job with my taxes.
    Hey!! What right do you have to resist their mindset!?! Bow down! Be dominated! Yield to their pretended negotiating position!

    Bwahahahahahahahahahahahahaa!!!


    Just prior to the American Revolution, one of the biggest complaints from the colonials were the searches and seizures conducted under Writs of Assistance. Basically, a Writ of Assistance was a blanket search warrant, issued for the duration of the reign of the king, that allowed the king's agents to search anywhere on the agent's own judgement for goods upon which taxes had not been paid. Homes and shops were searched, wine cellars searched, bedrooms searched, trunks broken open, locks broken--a sore point. I guess locks were expensive to replace. The "Assistance" angle arose from the condition in the Writ that granted the agent authority to call on civilians to help him search.

    One of the contemporary observations from an influential man at that time was to the effect that homes and shops were being searched excessively, and that the searching was being done by men of such character that no prudent person would hire them. That says something about people who gravitate to the more forceful parts of government, I think. What sort of person would find satisfaction in breaking into homes, ransacking them, and carrying off alleged untaxed goods? The same sort that would get upset by someone not calling their leader a lieutenant?
    Last edited by Citizen; 08-21-2010 at 07:09 PM.

  18. #18
    Regular Member paramedic70002's Avatar
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    Police Officers and Firefighters are commonly not considered civilians at the state level because they are sworn public safety employees. Perhaps we should more correctly refer to them as sworn civilians. Public safety EMS that are not also firefighters are not routinely sworn. Oddly, I work for a private corporation but fill a public safety EMS position under contract through the governing power of the County. Further, my paycheck comes from my private employer but I wear the uniform and use the equipment of, not the County, but an independent Volunteer Rescue Squad. One potential consequence of this arrangement is that my family would not qualify for the government's Line of Duty Death Benefit since I am not a "public safety employee." OK I am getting off topic.

    I can't speak to the minutiae of being sworn but I know I can go home at the end of my shift whether my relief comes in or not, and cannot be forced to return to work when I am off. Sworn personnel are in a different boat.

    Lets look at the definitions of citizen v. civilian.

    Citizen: a native or naturalized member of a state or other political community
    wordnetweb.princeton.edu/perl/webwn

    Civilian:a nonmilitary citizen; associated with civil life or performed by persons who are not active members of the military; "civilian clothing"; "civilian life"
    wordnetweb.princeton.edu/perl/webwn

    So by definition everyone is a citizen, every citizen is either a civilian or soldier.

    I am no more obligated to the protection of society than I am to say the Pledge of Allegiance or take my hat off when the Stars and Stripes passes. As was said, I am blessed to be born in a country where I am, among other things, free to not participate in the patriotic customs of that country. For that and many other reasons, I certainly do participate. What a twist! I believe I am in the greatest country in the world. Citizens of other countries may not agree with me but that's their problem. America provides the greatest chance for a certified loser to rise up and become greater than he ever thought possible, and for the average Joe to enjoy the highest standard of living and freedom.
    "Each worker carried his sword strapped to his side." Nehemiah 4:18

    Guns Save Lives. Paramedics Save Lives. But...
    Paramedics With Guns Scare People!

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    Regular Member Haz.'s Avatar
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    I am a free moral agent.

    Free moral agency consists of intellect, sensibility, and free will, and these form the foundation of moral obligation to moral government.
    The intellect includes reason and self determination. The sensibility includes self consciousness, all sensation, desire, emotion, passion, and all feeling. Free will is the power of choice concerning moral law. It is mans faculty of choosing good over evil without compulsion or necessity. Tyranny always rises from within a nation when the government has been captured by men who use their power to oppress the people.

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    Regular Member sudden valley gunner's Avatar
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    I was thinking about this a little too, if public servants are not civilians, than isn't it unconstitutional for them to patrol their fellow civilians?

    Hmmm Haz I like that better than my individual statement...Free Moral Agent.
    FMA- is a better acronym than any government one. LOL.

    Always like your posts Citizen and some good insite into history.

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    The problem is that many folks here define civilian as non-military. Every dictionary I have read, and the overwhelming majority of everyday folks, define civilian to be folks who are not military, not cops, and not firefighters. One dictionary I read even excluded EMTs from the definition.

    I don't think cops refer to themselves as non-civilians because they are military wannabes. They are just using the common definition of the word.

    Police officers who have achieved the rank of lieutenant are not using the title to indicate that they have authority over citizens, but to indicate that they are higher ranking than sergeants, corporals, etc. Their request to be referred to by their appropriate title is the same as an MD preferring to be called "doctor" rather than "mister." Personally, I have shown them, and will continue to show them, respect for the rank they have attained.

  22. #22
    Campaign Veteran GLOCK21GB's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Citizen View Post
    Hey!! What right do you have to resist their mindset!?! Bow down! Be dominated! Yield to their pretended negotiating position!

    Bwahahahahahahahahahahahahaa!!!


    Just prior to the American Revolution, one of the biggest complaints from the colonials were the searches and seizures conducted under Writs of Assistance. Basically, a Writ of Assistance was a blanket search warrant, issued for the duration of the reign of the king, that allowed the king's agents to search anywhere on the agent's own judgement for goods upon which taxes had not been paid. Homes and shops were searched, wine cellars searched, bedrooms searched, trunks broken open, locks broken--a sore point. I guess locks were expensive to replace. The "Assistance" angle arose from the condition in the Writ that granted the agent authority to call on civilians to help him search.

    One of the contemporary observations from an influential man at that time was to the effect that homes and shops were being searched excessively, and that the searching was being done by men of such character that no prudent person would hire them. That says something about people who gravitate to the more forceful parts of government, I think. What sort of person would find satisfaction in breaking into homes, ransacking them, and carrying off alleged untaxed goods? The same sort that would get upset by someone not calling their leader a lieutenant?
    gee whiz, these people sound ALOT like the Police, Batfe, IRS, types we have now. Like I said before...we are all subjects to a - soft tyranical police state monarchy.
    http://youtu.be/xWgVGu3OR4U AACFI, Wisconsin / Minnesota Carry Certified. Action Pistol & Advanced Action pistol concepts + Urban Carbine course. When the entitlement Zombies begin looting, pillaging, raping, burning & killing..remember HEAD SHOTS it's the only way to kill a Zombie. Stockpile food & water now.

    Please support your local,county, state & Federal Law enforcement agencies, right ???

  23. #23
    Regular Member sudden valley gunner's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by eye95 View Post
    The problem is that many folks here define civilian as non-military. Every dictionary I have read, and the overwhelming majority of everyday folks, define civilian to be folks who are not military, not cops, and not firefighters. One dictionary I read even excluded EMTs from the definition.

    I don't think cops refer to themselves as non-civilians because they are military wannabes. They are just using the common definition of the word.

    Police officers who have achieved the rank of lieutenant are not using the title to indicate that they have authority over citizens, but to indicate that they are higher ranking than sergeants, corporals, etc. Their request to be referred to by their appropriate title is the same as an MD preferring to be called "doctor" rather than "mister." Personally, I have shown them, and will continue to show them, respect for the rank they have attained.
    If they are not civilian than it is unconstitutional for them to police us. By that those definitions all gov. workers are not civilian, just don't bide well with me, if you start this sort of caste in a free society.

    I take the no title of nobility part of our constitution to a more broader perspective. I would even disagree with the idea of calling judges "your honor".

    In the words of Thomas Paine who felt that titles would obscure the true nature or character of an individual.

    "Dignities and high sounding names have different effects on different beholders. The lustre of the Star and the title of My Lord, over-awe the superstitious vulgar, and forbid them to inquire into the character of the possessor: Nay more, they are, as it were, bewitched to admire in the great, the vices they would honestly condemn in themselves. This sacrifice of common sense is the certain badge which distinguishes slavery from freedom; for when men yield up the privilege of thinking, the last shadow of liberty quits the horizon."
    Last edited by sudden valley gunner; 08-22-2010 at 10:34 AM.

  24. #24
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    Quote Originally Posted by sudden valley gunner View Post
    If they are not civilian than it is unconstitutional for them to police us. By that those definitions all gov. workers are not civilian, just don't bide well with me, if you start this sort of caste in a free society.

    I take the no title of nobility part of our constitution to a more broader perspective. I would even disagree with the idea of calling judges "your honor".

    In the words of Thomas Paine who felt that titles would obscure the true nature or character of an individual.

    "Dignities and high sounding names have different effects on different beholders. The lustre of the Star and the title of My Lord, over-awe the superstitious vulgar, and forbid them to inquire into the character of the possessor: Nay more, they are, as it were, bewitched to admire in the great, the vices they would honestly condemn in themselves. This sacrifice of common sense is the certain badge which distinguishes slavery from freedom; for when men yield up the privilege of thinking, the last shadow of liberty quits the horizon."
    Again, your first point presumes a definition of civilian as non-military. That is not the customary use of the word (except on OCDO). Civilian, as a word, carries no constitutional meaning.

    Your point on titles is irrelevant to the discussion. It is referring to titles conferred, not earned. I am sure Thomas Paine would have no problem with titles earned by education and by promotion through experience and hard work.

    Personally, when I was in uniform, I would have preferred to be addressed as Sergeant or Master Sergeant, as such would recognize my accomplishment in having attained that rank through my efforts. I would have preferred that address (and often got it) from those to whom my rank did not need to be meaningful.

    I hope you don't think that is "high-sounding" of me. However, if you do, that is your choice--saying more about you than me.

  25. #25
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    Quote Originally Posted by sudden valley gunner View Post
    "Dignities and high sounding names have different effects on different beholders.
    If Tom Paine can be aware of the effect of 'high sounding names' then I submit that low sounding names are similarly pejorative.

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