The topic of legalizing marijuana is very controversial due to the responsibility it gives to people. Many congress men and women use the concept of the slippery slope to prove why it would be unethical to legalize marijuana. A theory use would be that marijuana is a gateway drug that will lead to addiction to other drugs such as Heroin, Crystal Meth, Cocaine, and Ecstasy. Slippery slope theories like this keep surfacing to hinder the illegal drug from becoming as common as the cigarette. You can argue that it would be positive to make marijuana legal to prevent it from being sold to teenager , which would decrease the chance of drinking alcohol, teenage pregnancy, and driving under the influence. This slippery slope concept is so effective because there is some small truths to the string of events that happen. Studies show that most people who have engaged in smoking marijuana have moved on to stronger drugs. The selling of alcohol was the same way, the government had no idea how to regulate the sale of alcohol but it became legal. At the same time alcohol is the number one killer of Americans due to drunk driving accidents a year. I do not see congress making alcohol illegal again from the lost of live it creates. I see the slippery slope theory as a means to cloud and confuse the views of Americans when it come to making laws. It uses the association of situations that most people experience to attack the emotions that effects their decision-making. Now with television, sitcoms and commercials are painting clearer picture on what to believe and what not without really researching the fact behind a slippery slope story. Should marijuana be legalize? I don’t know, but do not let a slippery slope theory decide for you, investigate the facts and make a sound decision for yourself with eyes wide open.
Chapter 4 of Logic and Contemporary Rhetoric takes a look at a few types of fallacious reasoning, the first of which is the ad hominem argument. An ad hominem is the attacking of one’s opponent rather than the argument they present. A couple examples of these are attacks on irrelevant credentials or guilt by association. Although attacks on character or credentials may be relevant at times, such as when someone who has no prior knowledge in the field they are speaking about, unwarranted attacks are very common. Guilt by association occurs when someone attacks the character or actions of the people someone associates with and puts the guilt of those people on the person in question. The main difference between the straw man fallacy and an ad hominem is that the straw man attacks an argument that the opponent did not make and an ad hominem attacks the opponent directly. The picture above is an example of an ad hominem because when the the goose on the left gives a well thought out statement, the goose on the right attacks him by saying he is stupid because he eats corn and other irrelevant reasons.
Guilt by association along with many other versions of ad hominems is found frequently in political campaigns, debates and discussions. The picture above is a political cartoon depicting Sarah Palin. In it she says that it is reasonable to judge people based on the company they keep however, the cartoon also shows her aligning herself with people that are guilty of the “hatred of America” that she says is wrong. Although there are times such as when someone is associated with gangsters or other criminals where the judgement placed on that person may be accurate, it should not be the only proof of their guilt.
“I will conduct DA operations to destroy, exploit and seize designated targets. If unsuccessful or unable to meet objectives in these initial small scale offensive actions, I will reassess my BDA and re-attack until objectives are met. I have nothing to lose. My personal casualty means nothing. Just alike AAF’s, ACM’s, and AIF’s, you can not prevail against an enemy combatant who has no fear of death. An enemy who embraces death is a lose, lose situation for their enemy combatants.”
^ A piece from Chris Dorner’s manifesto. Full manifesto on link.
A great example of the “Two Wrongs Make a Right” fallacious reasoning is the current story of in the news about Chris Dorner and his recent killings in California. Everybody is mostly familiar with the topic. He reasoning for doing what he had done was because of the wrongs that were done by the police officers and other authority figures that he had witnessed to do horrible things. Because the higher authority power did nothing about the truths he told, he deceided he was going to do something about it himself.
Though the actions Chris took did not make anything right in the end. Just because the officers had done something wrong he obviously thought that it was okay for him to do something wrong. Just because someone else does something wrong does not make it okay for you to do something wrong. Because in doing so you become just as at fault as the other person. You dont become any better then them, you in fact, in my opinion are worse.
Would Same Sex Marriages Lead to Bestiality?
When dealing with a controversial issue like same-sex marriage, abortion, and gun control many fallacies occur within premises of the arguments. In an article I found on the internet about same-sex marriages that has multiple fallacies, however I am going to focuses on Slippery Slope fallacy it gives.
“How about group marriage? Or marriage between daddies and little girls? Or marriage between a man and his donkey? Anything allegedly linked to civil rights will be doable, and the legal underpinnings for marriage will have been destroyed.” Now, that’s more or less a prophecy. Not a divine prophecy, but a prediction.” –James C. Dobson
In Raphael Schweber-Koren’s article, “Dobson: Same-sex marriage would lead to “marriage between daddies and little girls … between a man and his donkey’”, he focuses on James C. Dobson’s argument on gay marriages and targets his logic. “James C. Dobson predicted on his radio program that allowing same-sex marriage in the United States would lead to “group marriage,” “marriage between daddies and little girls,” or “marriage between a man and his donkey.’” There is a slippery slope fallacy in Dobson’s argument because his reasoning was based on the idea that if same-sex marriages became legal it would lead to group marriages, and marriages between fathers and daughters, or even marriages between humans and animals. In a slippery slope fallacy accepting one thing will lead to another and another and another until some undesirable result occurs, in Dobson’s case, legalizing same sex marriages will lead to the legalization of a marriage between a man and his donkey. The line and reasoning between his premises to his conclusion is not logical or justified. Dobson’s argument has no validity, because the outcome on same sex marriages is unknown and he did not justify his conclusion to his argument.
“Are you a male or female?” was a question I was asked by my older brother when we were children. I was about 6 years old when he asked me this particular question. I didn’t know exactly what “male and female” meant. At that time, those were consider “big words” and didn’t know the difference. Of course, if he had asked if I was a girl or a boy, I would know the answer right away: girl. However, being the evil older brother that he was, he knew that I didn’t know the difference between the two so when I responded by saying “male” he bursted out laughing. For that entire week, he made fun of me by saying that “I was a boy”. Of course, this was us being children and finding every opportunity to pick on one an other. Yet, looking back, we are expected to know our gender and know which category we fall under in an early age.
Now, imagine this…
How would society run if we weren’t defined by our gender. For instance, take a look at the picture above. What if we weren’t born with any genitals? Looking at the infant, we wouldn’t be able to tell if it would be a boy or a girl. I’ve read an article explaining that children who struggle in defining themselves as “male or female” have an attachment to mermaids because they show no clear answer of its gender because it can go either way. Now imagine, being born as “intersexed” and having both male and females parts. How do you think society would run if we didn’t have something like “gender” defining who we are and our role in society. Do you believe that would make us all equals?
Thinking about it, wouldn’t it be a relief if we were all born like the infant in the picture? Being given the freedom of deciding who are and not letting gender define us? What is your take on this topic?
After reading the Intersex Narrative based on gender, medicine, and identity I was left in awe. I wondered to myself, what choice would I make if I had an intersex child or what if I was an intersex individual myself? Would I be upset that I was medically assigned a definitive sex, or would I be happy that I was able to identify myself as a definite gender this day in society, even if I was in the wrong body?
According to Sharon Preves, every day babies are born with bodies that are considered sexually inconclusive or ambiguous. As a result, these babies are regularly medically altered to reflect the sexual anatomy based on “standard” female or male sex assignment. This article explores the numerous responses and choices parents can make regarding their intersex child, which can include no response at all. In this day in age, it would be challenging not being able to identify yourself as male or female, since sex and gender are huge factors in our everyday existence, especially when considering social norms.
After learning more about intersexuality, I began browsing the web for personal stories. I wasn’t really interested in celebrities or stories that made it big, I was just interested in the guy or girl next door. I wanted to read a story and really try to grasp his or hers life experiences and how they were affected not only medically, but psychologically as well. Do you think it is possible to live a happy life as an intersex human being? Well, let’s find out.
When Max Beck was born, the doctors could not tell his parents what gender he was. According to PBS news, doctors found “a rudimentary phallus” and “fused labio-scrotal folds” in between Max’s legs. After many tests, his parents were sad and confused due to fact that all they wanted was a healthy baby, which is almost everyone’s hope. Five weeks after constant tests and medical procedures, it was discovered that Max was a “mosaic,” with some cells in his body having the XY genotype and others having XO. Therefore, the decision was finally made to raise him as a female. His parents did what they knew and named him Judy. He quickly grew into a tomboy, constantly being called a “little boy.” Max realized it was easy to get away throughout childhood, but it was harder during adolescence. He had no physical sense of self and watched his peers experience and interact, as his puberty came in pill form. He refers to himself as Frankenstein in this article because he didn’t know what he was, only that he was incomplete. Max eventually carried himself as a lesbian. Throughout his life he suffered many obstacles including, dropping out of college and even attempting suicide. He felt forced to stay with his husband until he met Tamara, who he then fell in love with. After over a decade of therapy he finally made a decision to transition from female to male, switching to testosterone. From changing the letter on his driver’s license, to changing his name from Judy to Max, he was finally on his way. Max is now happily married to the love of his life Tamara, who both identify themselves as lesbians and have a baby girl named Alder. Max looks forward to the future and closes this article saying, “I cannot undo my history, and I am sick to death of regretting it.”
“Abnormally developed fish, possessing both male and female characteristics, have been discovered in the Potomac River…raising alarms that the river is tainted by pollution that drives hormone systems haywire. The fish, smallmouth and largemouth bass, are naturally males but for some reason are developing immature eggs inside their sex organs… [Representatives] at area utilities said there was no evidence that tap water taken from the Potomac was unsafe to drink.”
– The Washington Post, Sept. 6, 2006
Normally when people are born they are placed into specific categories that allow them to function in the world that has already been set up. They are told what to eat, how to speak, what people would make great friends. Yet, they never really pay much mind to something that was never really discussed way back to before they were born. No on has ever really discussed sex and how it affects people when really it is simply another form of classification that is assumed; has to be followed otherwise something terrible might happen.
When I read this exert I saw how much drastic effort people put upon something as simple as the sex of a living mammal that would be later killed and eaten anyway. People were convinced that if a living breathing thing was not one sex or the other than that something is drastically wrong and needs to be readjusted. They believed that if they ate this simple little fish that they would contract something and thus maybe turn androgynous themselves or maybe pass it on to their children. When in fact being androgynous is not a fatal case that can harm anyone. It is something that happens to animals and humans alike. It was even proven in studies that they tested the water in that nothing was wrong or out of place. Nothing was abnormal or diseased filled.
There are 2% of the human population that are dealing with being androgynous and/or either because they were fixed at birth or had surgery to correct themselves later do they come out and tell people. Some never even know that they were fixed because medical professionals refuse to tell them, because of the mental stress they think it would cause. Parents believe that being like everyone else is the safest and most effective way of living, so when told by doctors that their child is something other they panic and make rash decision. Decisions that are not fully in their own right to make, and could later psychologically damage them more than if they had told them or let the child decide at a later date when mentally ready.
So based upon such harsh criticism straight out of the womb, it is no wonder why people frown upon or pass judgement so easily upon androgyny and people who are born with two reproductive parts. Though, the fact that these same people could be your friend, co-worker, or even relative and never know it is possible. & they can function on a daily basis without a soul knowing either. What you are born with does not define who you are; its what you think of yourself as that defines you and those around you.