Frelsun (frelsun) wrote in prolifedebate,

Do Facts Really Matter?

Some prochoicers think they are clever when they can show a prolifer doesn't know a particular fact about how abortion occurs. When prochoicers know the exact procedures of how abortion clinics work, they think they prove the ignorance of prolifers.

I don't think one necessarily needs to know any of the specifics of abortion procedures in order to be rationally prolife. These piddly facts don't ultimately matter.

I'm sure folks are thinking this is off the wall. But consider this analogy.

Many leftists and peaceniks are against the Iraq War, but I presume just about none of them know the specifics of military campaigns.

Ask a peacenik or lefty this:

What type of weapons do infantry use?
What type of ammunition do ground soldiers use?
Who manufacturers these weapons?
How does one assemble a bomb?
How long does it take for a bomb to blow up?
What are the dimensions of each type of bomb?
What model of vehicles does each unit use?
How many miles to the gallon do these vehicles get?
How many majors are in the U.S. army?
How many lieutenants are in the U.S. army?
What is the exact procedure for removing casualties?
What material are helmets made out of?
How many miles per hour do army vehicles travel at?

It seems that most of the opponents of the war, oppose it on moral grounds, and thus none of these specific issues matter. Certainly some military expert could talk circles around peaceniks about these technical matters, but ultimately, so what?

In Michael Shremer's book, Denying History, he describes how holocaust deniers poke holes in small factual errors of those who say the holocaust happened. He told one story of a Donahue episode on the Holocaust, where Donahue starting showing footage from Dachau Concentration Camp, which caused one of the Holocaust Deniers to say something along the lines, "Dachau was not an extermination camp", which Shremer concedes is true. Shremer notes that Holocaust Deniers are very good at pointing out small factual errors, and thus believe doing such bolsters their case.

A radical need not worry about small little facts, because as the saying goes "A radical gets to the root of the problem". Showing that someone else's facts are wrong does little more than cause one to feel superiority without addressing the fundamental issue at stake. Perhaps, ultimately, philosophical arguments only matter.
  • Post a new comment


    default userpic