Public: Voting: Negative
Anti-petition   (0)  [vote for, against]
People should be allowed to put a signature down to oppose a certain idea.

Have you ever seen somone in public with a little cardboard stand with some leaflets pinned to it asking peolpe if they want to sign a petition? Ever wanted to go there and tell them they are lunatics and completely wrong and that people should be able to experiment on dogs all they want as dogs are less important than the cure for cancer?

I think every petition should have 2 columns, one for saying you agree with something and one for saying you disagree with something. The incentive for this being that a culture based on the idea that people can oppose you will cause people to come up with less insane ideals and any petition that only shows the opinions of those who agree is not credible. Though a petitioner may be corrupt and deside to only show 2 or 3 pages of anti signatures, I still think this idea will help prevent lunacy and increase the importance of facts and the truth in culture.
-- 0_owaffleo_0, Nov 06 2003

In the US (and any democracy I've heard of), petitions don't get laws enacted. Here they help either:
1) Bring an issue to someone's attention as important. This is generally a politician, and the petition is to show how imortant an issue is based on how many people care enough to sign it.
2) In some places (California for one), this allows a proposed law to be placed up for election if enough signatures are collected.

Either way there is a layer of intellegence between the petition and putting a law in place.

Now, to the merits of your idea. I think you'll find that people are more likely to sign in favor of whatever is being petitioned for. This slants the number of signitures and makes this method unworthy of being used for anything like voting.

And further, there usually isn't any action on the other side. Are you saying that people signing the other column are for creating a law that puppies must be tested upon?
-- Worldgineer, Nov 06 2003

I actually think this is a good idea despite the disparaging annotations. After all what would the half-bakery be like if you could only award croissants and no fish bones (not half as much fun I suggest). +
-- dobtabulous, Nov 07 2003

I have gone given people seeking signatures against vivesection a hard time because of the way their literature seemed to support the animal rights terrorism we have seen in the UK for years. Thankfully we have been saved from the murderous antics of American style "pro-life" assassins over here but the animal rights terrorists have pretty bad.

I would like such a service but probably they should be provided by local government, providing a counter petition for all the petitions that are made available to the public that they know about.
-- Aristotle, Nov 07 2003

+. Also helpful if you're harrassed by these lunatics in the street. Signing the anti-petition is much easier than being hauled reluctantly into an argument about animal rights when you grew up on a farm and get really really incensed by people suggesting your father's way of life is somehow cruel when it's clearly not. Sorry, I get ranty over things like this.
-- Mistress Bling, Nov 07 2003

[Mistress Bling, Aristotle] - Since this annotation fest now has two postings bad-mouthing animal-rights campaigners, I feel obliged to reply. You may not have thought your father's way of life was cruel but I do (sorry - no offence to your father intended). I imagine the children of slave-traders did not regard their parents as cruel either. Public morals often change over time and I think we have already reached the stage where most people would not agree that farming is "CLEARLY not" cruel. Your certainty about this is unfounded - it’s not clear at all. And as for terrorism - it never ceases to amaze me how willing people are to adopt terrorist tactics in order to attempt to promote ideas which are about fighting (perceived) cruelty or injustice. In the sphere of animal rights there are stupid terrorists on one side and unspeakably cruel animal torturers on the other. Both are evil and wrong. Aristotle does not say whether he would have supported a similar petition if it weren't for the assumed support for terrorism. I still think anti-petitions are a great idea.
-- dobtabulous, Nov 10 2003

Everybody's entitled to their opinion and that's fine by me :-)
-- Mistress Bling, Nov 10 2003

random, halfbakery