Wednesday, February 21, 2018

how not to argue your case

Seen on Gab this morning:

The above image is part of a larger conservative response to the renewed cry for gun control, etc., by the US left in the wake of the recent school shooting in Parkland, Florida, at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School on Valentine's Day. The right's multi-pronged response, in answer to various leftist slings and arrows, has varied in argumentative and rhetorical legitimacy. The above text and graphic together form, in my opinion, an example of bad argumentation. Taken in context, the not-so-subtle subtext of the above post is, "You think school shootings are bad? Let's put this in perspective: UN-related rapes are far worse, being both more numerous and occurring within a much shorter time frame." The problem, of course, is that this "argument" does nothing to address the severity of the Parkland massacre, or of school shootings in general. There are arguments that the right can make (and has made) regarding gun control, and I've already seen a few (here's one), but the above is not one of them. Just as one can't evade an accusation of wrongdoing by saying, "But they're worse," one can't dismiss gun violence on school property by saying "UN rapes are worse." How does one compare shooting deaths and mass rape, anyway?

ADDENDUM: gun-buying and fake news. It'd be nice to be able to arrest the reporter for lying. And: more lies re: ease of gun-buying.

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