Even Bad Arguments Must be Refuted
I know it is tedious to refute nonsensical, illogical, factually incorrect or otherwise bad arguments. But it must be done. Yesterday’s nonsense has a way of becoming today’s conventional wisdom. And our friends at the Daily Kos made a very bad argument indeed in the course of their smear job against the Ruth Institute the other day.
The Gay Establishment has been circulating a version of the argument Dante made at the Kos:
“In (both Prop 8 in CA and Issue 1 in ME) the campaign tactics used were despicable: both campaigns sought to convince the electorate that legalizing same-sex marriage would lead to second-graders being recruited into a lifestyle of sodomy and depravity.”
Poor Dante: once again, he has no empathy for other people’s concerns. The real issue in those ads about 2nd graders was not that gay men were going to jump out and grab children. There was not a hint of any such thing in any of the ads in CA. The issue was parental rights: parents did not like the idea of their children being taught about same sex marriage in grade school. Parents want to share that kind of information with their children, in accordance with their own values, and their judgment about their child’s maturity level.
The issue was parental rights. In this video, it is quite clear that these parents believe that they should have the rights to decide when and how to explain homosexuality to their children. They are quite clear that they are worried, not about “recruiting children,” but about indoctrinating and propagandizing children, at all grade levels. In the Prop 8 campaign in CA we had signs that said “Prop 8 = Parental Rights.” Evidently, the Gay Lobby and its allies are unsympathetic with the desire of parents to direct the education of their own children.
But, the argument continues, “What is so wrong with children being taught that same sex couples exist? They do exist. They are out there in the public, living a perfectly legal and acceptable lifestyle. Why shouldn’t kids learn about them?”
This response is actually worse than the original argument, as it demonstrates how tone-deaf the Gay Lobby and their allies really are. Americans are for the most part, willing to live and let live about same sex couples living together. If their kids ask them about Dan and Dave who live next door, or Cousin Ellen and her friend Susie, most people are perfectly capable of formulating an answer that is a) respectful of Dan and Dave, or Ellen and Susie, and b) includes as much (or as little) information about the likely sexual activities of Dan and Dave, or Ellen and Susie, as is consistent with the maturity level of the child, the closeness of the family with Dave and Dan.
What else exactly is it that the Gay Lobby thinks is so important to accomplish in elementary school?
The voters were left to answer that question for themselves, and they didn’t like what comes to mind. With state courts ruling in favor of the schools, and against the parents, with the CA education establishment actively campaigning against Prop 8, the voters concluded that parents were likely to lose in any showdown between parental discretion and school establishment power. But in the Gay Left Lexicon, none of these concerns are even worth mentioning. The only possible explanation worth discussing is that NOM must have been appealing to dark and sinister motives.
As I said, even a bad argument must be refuted, or it will take on a life of its own. I heard a version of this argument in a debate in San Francisco, and I could hardly believe what I was hearing. More significantly, the Gay Legal Establishment used a variation of this argument in the Prop 8 court case, Perry v Schwarzenegger. The stakes are much higher there than in my little debate. If Judge Walker, himself no parent, can’t find any empathy with the concerns of parents, and swallows the Gay Lobby’s bait on the hidden meaning of these very tame ads, he will overturn Prop 8. That in turn, would mean that the federal constitution forbids the dual gender requirement for marriage. Same sex marriage would be established nationwide, regardless of the wishes of voters.
Look at the Prop 8 ads here and here and see for yourself whether you think they are about parental rights to direct their children’s education, or whether they are some kind of hidden gay-bashing. Draw your own conclusions about who is distorting what.
And don’t be afraid to stick up for what you believe.