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76  Presidential Elections - Analysis and Discussion / 2016 U.S. Presidential Election / Re: Gay Couple Featured in Hillary's Campaign Video Invites her to their Wedding on: April 13, 2015, 03:51:12 pm
Please take your discriminatory hatred elsewhere. See you next Tuesday.
77  Atlas Fantasy Elections / Atlas Fantasy Government / Re: Affirmative Consent in Post-Secondary Education Act of 2015 (Voting on amendment on: April 13, 2015, 03:50:02 pm
After hearing from a few colleagues, I choose to offer the following amendment once the one we're currently voting on fails. I know it doesn't change much, but I do think it changes the tone of the bill and makes "consent" slightly more palatable.

The next steps, for me, will involve making the penalties less severe for non-compliant institutions and, potentially, removing the government from trying to leverage the disciplinary process whatsoever. They're big changes though, so I'd rather do them one at a time. Plus, I don't know how much of the bill would actually be left. Tongue

Quote from: Amendment Offered
Affirmative Consent in Post-Secondary Education Act of 2015

Section 1 - Introductory Matter
1. In order to receive federal financial assistance from July 1, 2015, a post-secondary educational institution (hereafter referred to as the "institution") must adopt a policy concerning sexual assault, domestic violence, dating violence, and stalking, as defined in relevant regional and federal statute involving a student, both on and off campus, in person and online.
2. The Secretary of Internal Affairs is hereby directed to develop a similar agreement with the regional governments regarding regional financial assistance to post-secondary institutions.

Section 2 - The Policy
1. The said policy shall consist of the following:
    (1) The promotion of an affirmative consent standard in the determination of whether consent was given by both parties to sexual activity. “Affirmative consent” means affirmative, conscious, and voluntary agreement to engage in sexual activity. It is the responsibility of each person involved in the sexual activity to ensure that he or she has the affirmative consent of the other or others to engage in the sexual activity. Lack of protest or resistance does not necessarily mean consent, nor does silence mean consent. Affirmative Consent must be ongoing throughout a sexual activity and can be revoked at any time. The existence of a dating relationship between the persons involved, or the fact of past sexual relations between them, should never by itself be assumed to be an indicator of consent.
    (2) A policy that, in the evaluation of complaints in any disciplinary process, it shall not be a valid excuse to alleged lack of affirmative consent that the accused believed that the complainant consented to the sexual activity under either of the following circumstances: A disciplinary process for assault allegations that disqualifies the following situations as reasonable defenses for having not acquired affirmative consent prior to engaging in sexual activities:
        (A) The accused’s belief in affirmative consent arose from the intoxication or recklessness of the accused.
        (B) The accused did not take reasonable steps, in the circumstances known to the accused at the time, to ascertain whether the complainant affirmatively consented.
    (3) A policy that the standard used in determining whether the elements of the complaint against the accused have been demonstrated is the preponderance of the evidence.
    (4) (3) A policy that, in the evaluation of complaints in the disciplinary process, it shall not be a valid excuse that the accused believed that the complainant affirmatively consented to the sexual activity if the accused knew or reasonably should have known that the complainant was unable to consent to the sexual activity under any of the following circumstances:
        (A) The complainant was asleep or unconscious.
        (B) The complainant was incapacitated due to the influence of drugs, alcohol, or medication, so that the complainant could not understand the fact, nature, or extent of the sexual activity.
        (C) The complainant was unable to communicate due to a mental or physical condition.

Section 3 - Establishing Policies Dealing With Sexual Assault, Domestic Violence, Dating Violence, and Stalking
1. In order to receive federal funds for student financial assistance, the institution shall adopt detailed and victim-centered policies and protocols regarding sexual assault, domestic violence, dating violence, and stalking involving a student that comport with best practices and current professional standards. At a minimum, the policies and protocols shall cover all of the following:
    (1) A policy statement on how the institution will provide appropriate protections for the privacy of individuals involved, including confidentiality.
    (2) Initial response by the institution’s personnel to a report of an incident, including requirements specific to assisting the victim, providing information in writing about the importance of preserving evidence, and the identification and location of witnesses.
    (3) Response to stranger and nonstranger sexual assault.
    (4) The preliminary victim interview, including the development of a victim interview protocol, and a comprehensive followup victim interview, as appropriate.
    (5) Contacting and interviewing the accused.
    (6) Seeking the identification and location of witnesses.
    (7) Providing written notification to the victim about the availability of, and contact information for, on- and off-campus resources and services, and coordination with law enforcement, as appropriate.
    (8 ) Participation of victim advocates and other supporting people.
    (9) Investigating allegations that alcohol or drugs were involved in the incident.
    (10) Providing that an individual who participates as a complainant or witness in an investigation of sexual assault, domestic violence, dating violence, or stalking will not be subject to disciplinary sanctions for a violation of the institution’s student conduct policy at or near the time of the incident, unless the institution determines that the violation was egregious, including, but not limited to, an action that places the health or safety of any other person at risk or involves plagiarism, cheating, or academic dishonesty.
    (11) The role of the institutional staff supervision.
    (12) A comprehensive, trauma-informed training program for campus officials involved in investigating and adjudicating sexual assault, domestic violence, dating violence, and stalking cases.
    (13) Procedures for confidential reporting by victims and third parties.

Section 4 - Establishing Memoranda of Understanding With Partner Organizations
1. In order to receive federal funds for student financial assistance, the institution shall, to the extent feasible, enter into memoranda of understanding, agreements, or collaborative partnerships with existing on-campus and community-based organizations, including rape crisis centers, to refer students for assistance or make services available to students, including counseling, health, mental health, victim advocacy, and legal assistance, and including resources for the accused.

Section 5 - Establishing Comprehensive Prevention and Outreach Programs Addressing Sexual Violence
1. In order to receive federal funds for student financial assistance, the institution shall implement comprehensive prevention and outreach programs addressing sexual violence, domestic violence, dating violence, and stalking.
2. A comprehensive prevention program shall include a range of prevention strategies, including, but not limited to, empowerment programming for victim prevention, awareness raising campaigns, primary prevention, bystander intervention, and risk reduction. Outreach programs shall be provided to make students aware of the institution’s policy on sexual assault, domestic violence, dating violence, and stalking.
3. At a minimum, an outreach program shall include a process for contacting and informing the student body, campus organizations, athletic programs, and student groups about the institution’s overall sexual assault policy, the practical implications of an affirmative consent standard, and the rights and responsibilities of students under the policy.
4. Outreach programming shall be included as part of every incoming student’s orientation.
78  Atlas Fantasy Elections / Atlas Fantasy Government / Re: Affirmative Consent in Post-Secondary Education Act of 2015 (Voting on amendment on: April 13, 2015, 03:44:03 pm
Senator Cranberry, a vote for the amendment does not require a vote for the final version. Wink
79  Atlas Fantasy Elections / Atlas Fantasy Government / Re: Policing the Police Act of 2014 (Debating) on: April 13, 2015, 03:42:49 pm
Aye
80  Atlas Fantasy Elections / Atlas Fantasy Government / Re: Affirmative Consent in Post-Secondary Education Act of 2015 (Voting on amendment on: April 13, 2015, 11:39:56 am
DemPGH, consent is not "asking for permission." Affirmative consent seems to give off that vibe, but I think "consent" on its own is a bit more open to interpretation and manifests in different forms.

As for the standard of evidence... Being kicked out of school for suspected rape carries almost as much baggage as being found guilty and sent to jail. I would rather this bill not speak at all on the standard of evidence than force schools to adopt the preponderance of evidence standard, which, let's face it, could be problematic.
81  Atlas Fantasy Elections / Atlas Fantasy Government / Re: Affirmative Consent in Post-Secondary Education Act of 2015 (Voting on amendment on: April 13, 2015, 09:25:39 am
Well, one could argue that these institutions also have a responsibility to address very serious issues like these that happen on their premeses.

And yes, I am invoking criminal standards, but only because I believe the principles behind them are applicable here. You can't kick someone out of school based on a suspicion.
82  Forum Community / Forum Community / Re: The Real Life Picture Thread (PAPOY Creepfest 2015) on: April 12, 2015, 11:10:58 pm
So, I've started taking more, erm, "risks" in terms of what I wear. I think I might be gay...



83  Atlas Fantasy Elections / Atlas Fantasy Government / Re: Fairness in Cabinet Obligations Amendment on: April 12, 2015, 09:50:28 pm
Aye
84  Presidential Elections - Analysis and Discussion / 2016 U.S. Presidential Election / Re: 3 hours in - grade Hillary's campaign thus far on: April 12, 2015, 09:46:31 pm
Solid A. I think it sets the right tone and feels very modern. Maybe it's just me, but they've actually managed to make Hillary seem fresh, somehow. I like it.
85  Atlas Fantasy Elections / Atlas Fantasy Government / Re: Affirmative Consent in Post-Secondary Education Act of 2015 (Voting on amendment on: April 12, 2015, 04:11:33 pm
Windjammer, don't you mean fail? I see way more Nays than Ayes.

As for the reasonable doubt wording... why? I mean, I understand it is very hard to prove cases of rape or assault, but it's hard to prove anything. The standard exists because, as a country, we believe that people are innocent until proven guilty. Not "suspected mostly guilty." I don't know what the balance is, but "50%+1 evidence" isn't fair either.
86  Atlas Fantasy Elections / Atlas Fantasy Government / Re: Affirmative Consent in Post-Secondary Education Act of 2015 (Voting on amendment on: April 12, 2015, 04:01:44 pm
Well, my intention was to totally rewrite the thing, but it proved quite difficult and I ended up creating an amendment that's a lot like the one we're currently voting on. I think it makes the legislation more palatable, but I'm not really sure how to proceed.

I believe some of the distrust around the consent piece is that "affirmative" consent must be ongoing at all times. This language does make it sound like the consent must always be explicit. While I agree that sex should happen only between consenting parties, explicit consent is unworkable. My amendment makes it so that the policies must only require consent in any of its forms, not just "affirmative consent." I've also made it so that the institutions must promote affirmative consent; it just sounds friendlier and less invasive. Finally, I've softened some of the language regarding what consent is. Sometimes, lack of protest is consent, because participating individuals shouldn't have to consistently utter "yes please, yes please." Finally, I've changed the "preponderance of evidence" piece. Sorry, but I don't think innocent people should be punished for crimes they didn't commit.

Anyway, that's basically what I have here. I'm not going to put it forward until I hear that it will be approached with some support. After looking at the bill more closely, I think I do support the spirit of it. We just have to make sure that we're not asking for unfair or impossible standards.

Quote
Affirmative Consent in Post-Secondary Education Act of 2015

Section 1 - Introductory Matter
1. In order to receive federal financial assistance from July 1, 2015, a post-secondary educational institution (hereafter referred to as the "institution") must adopt a policy concerning sexual assault, domestic violence, dating violence, and stalking, as defined in relevant regional and federal statute involving a student, both on and off campus, in person and online.
2. The Secretary of Internal Affairs is hereby directed to develop a similar agreement with the regional governments regarding regional financial assistance to post-secondary institutions.

Section 2 - The Policy
1. The said policy shall consist of the following:
    (1) The promotion of an affirmative consent standard in the determination of whether consent was given by both parties to sexual activity. “Affirmative consent” means affirmative, conscious, and voluntary agreement to engage in sexual activity. It is the responsibility of each person involved in the sexual activity to ensure that he or she has the affirmative consent of the other or others to engage in the sexual activity. Lack of protest or resistance does not necessarily mean consent, nor does silence mean consent. Affirmative Consent must be ongoing throughout a sexual activity and can be revoked at any time. The existence of a dating relationship between the persons involved, or the fact of past sexual relations between them, should never by itself be assumed to be an indicator of consent.
    (2) A policy that, in the evaluation of complaints in any disciplinary process, it shall not be a valid excuse to alleged lack of affirmative consent that the accused believed that the complainant consented to the sexual activity under either of the following circumstances: A disciplinary process for assault allegations that disqualifies the following situations as reasonable defenses for having not acquired affirmative consent prior to engaging in sexual activities:
        (A) The accused’s belief in affirmative consent arose from the intoxication or recklessness of the accused.
        (B) The accused did not take reasonable steps, in the circumstances known to the accused at the time, to ascertain whether the complainant affirmatively consented.
    (3) A policy that the standard used in determining whether the elements of the complaint against the accused have been demonstrated is the preponderance of the evidence proof beyond reasonable doubt.
    (4) A policy that, in the evaluation of complaints in the disciplinary process, it shall not be a valid excuse that the accused believed that the complainant affirmatively consented to the sexual activity if the accused knew or reasonably should have known that the complainant was unable to consent to the sexual activity under any of the following circumstances:
        (A) The complainant was asleep or unconscious.
        (B) The complainant was incapacitated due to the influence of drugs, alcohol, or medication, so that the complainant could not understand the fact, nature, or extent of the sexual activity.
        (C) The complainant was unable to communicate due to a mental or physical condition.

Section 3 - Establishing Policies Dealing With Sexual Assault, Domestic Violence, Dating Violence, and Stalking
1. In order to receive federal funds for student financial assistance, the institution shall adopt detailed and victim-centered policies and protocols regarding sexual assault, domestic violence, dating violence, and stalking involving a student that comport with best practices and current professional standards. At a minimum, the policies and protocols shall cover all of the following:
    (1) A policy statement on how the institution will provide appropriate protections for the privacy of individuals involved, including confidentiality.
    (2) Initial response by the institution’s personnel to a report of an incident, including requirements specific to assisting the victim, providing information in writing about the importance of preserving evidence, and the identification and location of witnesses.
    (3) Response to stranger and nonstranger sexual assault.
    (4) The preliminary victim interview, including the development of a victim interview protocol, and a comprehensive followup victim interview, as appropriate.
    (5) Contacting and interviewing the accused.
    (6) Seeking the identification and location of witnesses.
    (7) Providing written notification to the victim about the availability of, and contact information for, on- and off-campus resources and services, and coordination with law enforcement, as appropriate.
    (8 ) Participation of victim advocates and other supporting people.
    (9) Investigating allegations that alcohol or drugs were involved in the incident.
    (10) Providing that an individual who participates as a complainant or witness in an investigation of sexual assault, domestic violence, dating violence, or stalking will not be subject to disciplinary sanctions for a violation of the institution’s student conduct policy at or near the time of the incident, unless the institution determines that the violation was egregious, including, but not limited to, an action that places the health or safety of any other person at risk or involves plagiarism, cheating, or academic dishonesty.
    (11) The role of the institutional staff supervision.
    (12) A comprehensive, trauma-informed training program for campus officials involved in investigating and adjudicating sexual assault, domestic violence, dating violence, and stalking cases.
    (13) Procedures for confidential reporting by victims and third parties.

Section 4 - Establishing Memoranda of Understanding With Partner Organizations
1. In order to receive federal funds for student financial assistance, the institution shall, to the extent feasible, enter into memoranda of understanding, agreements, or collaborative partnerships with existing on-campus and community-based organizations, including rape crisis centers, to refer students for assistance or make services available to students, including counseling, health, mental health, victim advocacy, and legal assistance, and including resources for the accused.

Section 5 - Establishing Comprehensive Prevention and Outreach Programs Addressing Sexual Violence
1. In order to receive federal funds for student financial assistance, the institution shall implement comprehensive prevention and outreach programs addressing sexual violence, domestic violence, dating violence, and stalking.
2. A comprehensive prevention program shall include a range of prevention strategies, including, but not limited to, empowerment programming for victim prevention, awareness raising campaigns, primary prevention, bystander intervention, and risk reduction. Outreach programs shall be provided to make students aware of the institution’s policy on sexual assault, domestic violence, dating violence, and stalking.
3. At a minimum, an outreach program shall include a process for contacting and informing the student body, campus organizations, athletic programs, and student groups about the institution’s overall sexual assault policy, the practical implications of an affirmative consent standard, and the rights and responsibilities of students under the policy.
4. Outreach programming shall be included as part of every incoming student’s orientation.
87  Atlas Fantasy Elections / Atlas Fantasy Elections / Re: Office of Senate Speaker Windjammer (Update) on: April 12, 2015, 03:24:29 pm
Nothing like the pleasant aroma of déjà vu on a sunny Sunday afternoon… Wink
88  Atlas Fantasy Elections / Atlas Fantasy Government / Re: Reintroducing the Cabinet Reform Amendment on: April 12, 2015, 03:22:03 pm
I hate to make such a tiny change, but they have always been cabinet secretaries in the game. It's a presidential system, not a parliamentary system. I think it's more in keeping with the heritage of Atlasia to call our cabinet members "secretaries."

Quote from: Amendment Offered
Reintroducing the Cabinet Reform Amendment:

1. Following the passage of this amendment, the current existing Cabinet shall retain its current form until the start of the next presidential term.

Article II of the Constitution is hereby amended to read:

Quote
Section 1: The Presidency
5.The President shall appoint the Ministers Secretaries of the executive departments who shall constitute the Cabinet, with the advice and consent of the Senate, who shall all be registered voters. The President shall have power to dismiss any member of his Cabinet.

Quote
Section 4: The Cabinet:

1. The cabinet shall be divided into different executive departments, created and regulated by executive order.
2. The individual departments shall be led by Cabinet Ministers Secretaries, who shall be appointed by the President through executive order and confirmed by the Senate through a majority vote.
3. All of the Ministers of the Cabinet may appoint Deputies,  who all shall be registered voters, to handle specific government departments, agencies or responsibilities, with the advice and consent of the Senate.

Section 5: Game Engine:

1. The Game Engine shall be represented in the person of a Game Moderator who shall be entrusted with establishing and informing about the real world events and situations of the Republic of Atlasia and the World.
2. The Game Moderator shall be a registered voter, and he shall be appointed by the President and confirmed by the Senate. The Game Moderator may at any time be removed by the Senate by a three fifths vote, without presidential approval.
3. The Game Moderator may appoint deputies to assist him on his duties with the advice and the consent of the Senate, who shall all be registered voters.
4. The office of the Game Moderator shall not be considered subordinated to the Presidency or the Cabinet.

Article V, Section 1 of the Constitution is hereby amended to read:

Quote
1. No person may simultaneously hold two or more offices of the Republic of Atlasia at any level of the government. An exception shall be made for the Ministers Secretaries of the President's cabinet, excluding the Game Moderator, who may serve in multiple cabinet posts, but not in addition to any other office. The Vice President may also be allowed to serve in a single cabinet post. Any person nominated to multiple offices, and any person already holding office nominated to another office as allowed above, shall still require Senate approval for each individual cabinet post. In the event that a Vice President who holds a cabinet post becomes Acting President, the Vice President shall designate an Acting Secretary to exercise the powers of that cabinet post while he or she serves as Acting President. The Senate shall, by appropriate legislation, have the power to place further limitations on the holding of multiple offices within the President's cabinet.

Article VIII, Section 2 of the Constitution is hereby amended to read:

Quote
   
1. The candidacy declaration deadline for regular and special federal elections shall be determined by the Senate via appropriate legislation.
2. The procedure for absentee voting shall be determined by the Senate via appropriate legislation or by the Secretary of Federal Elections in the absence of such legislation.
89  Atlas Fantasy Elections / Atlas Fantasy Government / Re: Policing the Police Act of 2014 (Debating) on: April 12, 2015, 03:16:14 pm
Aye
90  Atlas Fantasy Elections / Atlas Fantasy Government / Re: Affirmative Consent in Post-Secondary Education Act of 2015 (Voting on amendment on: April 12, 2015, 03:13:48 pm
Abstain

I don't want my position to be misconstrued as "anti-consent." I want radical change to this bill, which I will offer soon.
91  Presidential Elections - Analysis and Discussion / 2016 U.S. Presidential Election / Re: 2016 Straw Poll on: April 12, 2015, 03:06:28 pm
I expect to be supporting Clinton, unless one of the trolls pleasantly surprises me.
92  Presidential Elections - Analysis and Discussion / 2016 U.S. Presidential Election / Re: Well, your opinion of Hillary's video? on: April 12, 2015, 02:53:14 pm
Much better than an egotistical hour-long speech at a Christian university, to be sure.
93  Presidential Elections - Analysis and Discussion / 2016 U.S. Presidential Election / Re: Should Hillary have had plastic surgery again before jumping in the race? on: April 12, 2015, 10:27:59 am
I've never been convinced that she ever had any done in the first place, so... meh.
94  Atlas Fantasy Elections / Atlas Fantasy Government / Re: Constitutional Amendment (Voting on amendment) on: April 11, 2015, 10:16:58 am
Why are we voting on this most recent amendment? Unless I'm missing something (possible), the sponsor never said it was unfriendly.
95  Atlas Fantasy Elections / Atlas Fantasy Government / Re: Policing the Police Act of 2014 (Debating) on: April 11, 2015, 10:14:14 am
I obviously support the amendment and encourage Senator Polnut to keep it in play and see where the chips fall. I believe we can find the votes to get this thing passed without doing damage to the lives and reputations of our first responders. So far, this is the most workable amendment to bring the bill back into the realm of reality.
96  Atlas Fantasy Elections / Atlas Fantasy Government / Re: Affirmative Consent in Post-Secondary Education Act of 2015 on: April 11, 2015, 10:09:52 am
It's difficult to know how to address the issue. I don't know how right I am in saying this, but I think part of the problem is just with the ambiguity of the act itself. If a person feels violated after a sexual experience, it's not my place to question their feelings or render them moot. But feeling violated after the fact (or during the fact) is not necessarily enough to make the participating partner guilty of anything, especially if consent was implied. Affirmative consent seems like an easy way to solve the problem, but the truth is, that's not how intimacy works, and it's not the job of the government to tell people how to have sex. And since that's an overarching principle I really can't justify straying from, I'm struggling to find a better way to deal with the problem of rape. I might have to resign myself to the fact that current laws are adequate and find some solace in the fact that the solution might rest with education outreach instead.

I mean, I just don't know. None of us "likes" rape. How do we stop it without creating more problems?
97  Atlas Fantasy Elections / Atlas Fantasy Government / Re: Reintroducing the Cabinet Reform Amendment on: April 09, 2015, 11:41:12 am
Why use "ministers" when most of our cabinet heads are secretaries?
98  Atlas Fantasy Elections / Atlas Fantasy Elections / Re: GM Issue on: April 09, 2015, 07:15:40 am
But as pseudo NPCs, could deregistered individuals be killed?
99  Atlas Fantasy Elections / Atlas Fantasy Government / Re: Agricultural Policy Act of 2015 (Debating) on: April 08, 2015, 11:15:36 pm
Well, as you said, I don't think productivity needs to be our most important goal. Overall levels of food output may not significantly change, but bringing sites of production closer to consumers is never a bad thing. There's the emotional argument related to being out on the "land" and seeing where food comes from, but urban farming also has environmental benefits in that the food is local. I'm not sure on this because obviously the quality of food will be different, but buying directly from the source could have cost benefits too because there wouldn't be a middle man. I do know, though, that being the source most certainly would have financial benefits.

I don't know if making an industry out of urban agriculture would ever work, but I do think we could encourage and support small operations throughout our cities to great results. Especially if we start concerning ourselves with the problem of urban food deserts and that type of stuff in this discussion.

Just my two cents.
100  Atlas Fantasy Elections / Atlas Fantasy Elections / Re: The Office of Senator HagridOfTheDeep—Report on Vote History Published! on: April 08, 2015, 07:24:55 pm
Yes. You just can't resist my advances. Wink
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