Tuesday, January 29, 2008
Before you Buy the Lie, Check the Logic (Gore: Homosexual Marriage)
In the OneNewsNow article entitled "Al Gore backs Homosexual Marriage", Gore is quoted as stating that "Gay men and women ought to have the same rights as heterosexual men and women to make contracts...", that "the loyalty and love" that two men or two women feel for one another when they "fall in love ought to be "celebrated and encouraged", ...and then seeks to justify his position by stating "Shouldn't we be promoting the kind of faithfulness and loyalty to one's partner regardless of sexual orientation? ...Because if you don't do that, then to that extent you're promoting promiscuity -- and you're promoting all the problems that can result from promiscuity."
This is nothing more than the logical fallacies of circular reasoning, non sequitur, poisoning the well, presumption: fallacy of an excluded middle, and irrelevant conclusion.
Gore's argument is circular in that it begins by saying that homosexual marriage should be allowed, and then seeks to prove it by stating that if homosexual marriage should be allowed, then by not allowing homosexual marriage (and preventing one from faithfulness to one's partner regardless of sexual orientation) one promotes promiscuity, which all agree should not be allowed, therefore homosexual marriage should be allowed.
Next, the issue of homosexual marriage and promiscuity are two separate issues. Just because one is opposed to homosexual marriage does not necessarily mean one promotes promiscuity. (If fact, it's possible one could be against homosexual marriage, but be for faithfulness in homosexual marriages if such were made law.)(At the same time, one can be against homosexual marriage, and against promiscuity, even as they possess convictions that homosexual unions not only should not be sanctioned but considered sinful.)
Gore's argument ["Shouldn't we be promoting the kind of faithfulness and loyalty to one's partner regardless of sexual orientation? ...Because if you don't do that, then to that extent you're promoting promiscuity -- and you're promoting all the problems that can result from promiscuity."] is akin to suggesting that since we should promote people standing by their word, that in regard to liars if we do not do that, then "to that extent we are promoting falsehood - and we're promoting all the problems that can result from falsehood."
Interesting isn't it, how one's beliefs not only affect the way they view other things, but also how they can lead one to jump to presumptions and conclusions (even false, misleading, incomplete ones) to justify their positions, even if their position is wrong.
In light of this example, it's clear why individuals should not fall for Argumentum ad verecundiam (Appeal to authority), ... for just because a famous person like former vice president Al Gore argues for a position such as homosexual marriage doesn't mean their arguments are valid, good, or right!