The Federal Prop. 8 Trial / Gay Marriage Catch-All

Ummm... yeah except that legislating on morality generally requires some kind of societal "harm" associated with it. Like murder, someone ends up dead. Can morality based rulings on this even continue given this last election? When we have majorities in states who are voting in FAVOR of allowing gay marriage, doesn't that kind of kick the legs out from under a "everyone agrees this shouldn't be legal" position?

Congrats to Scalia for being an idiotic jerk.

Phoenix Rev wrote:

"It's a form of argument that I thought you would have known, which is called the 'reduction to the absurd,'" Scalia told Hosie of San Francisco during the question-and-answer period. "If we cannot have moral feelings against homosexuality, can we have it against murder? Can we have it against other things?"

Scalia said he is not equating sodomy with murder but drawing a parallel between the bans on both.

It's a "form of argument", you say, Scalia? Isn't that a &^%$ing logical fallacy argument? And he's happily and openly pointing out that he uses it as a tool to shift the argument? This man is a Supreme Court justice? What on earth. What. On. Earth.

Demosthenes wrote:
Ummm... yeah except that legislating on morality generally requires some kind of societal "harm" associated with it. Like murder, someone ends up dead. Can morality based rulings on this even continue given this last election? When we have majorities in states who are voting in FAVOR of allowing gay marriage, doesn't that kind of kick the legs out from under a "everyone agrees this shouldn't be legal" position?

Congrats to Scalia for being an idiotic jerk.

The best thing about making laws based on "morality" is that you can always justify it in the face of shifting opinion. When opinion is with you, it's a societal norm, which is a hallmark of a country's morality. When opinion is against you, it's an ideal or noble standard that we should adhere to despite people's moral turpitude.

MilkmanDanimal wrote:
I already want to kick Scalia in the shins for the minority opinion he's going to write on this one.

I'm just gonna go ahead and quote myself here . . .

Bloo Driver wrote:
Phoenix Rev wrote:

"It's a form of argument that I thought you would have known, which is called the 'reduction to the absurd,'" Scalia told Hosie of San Francisco during the question-and-answer period. "If we cannot have moral feelings against homosexuality, can we have it against murder? Can we have it against other things?"

Scalia said he is not equating sodomy with murder but drawing a parallel between the bans on both.

It's a "form of argument", you say, Scalia? Isn't that a &^%$ing logical fallacy argument?

It isn't. It's got a Latin name like a lot of logical fallacies, but it's just a term for a logically valid type of argument.

I guess I've never seen one that is not, itself, an absurd connection (not an absurd but connected extension). I don't know who writes The Official List Of Fallacies, but I think we're pretty close to needing to edit that one onto it through misuse.

Yeah, I've never heard of that particular line of attack being used in a way where the person who made the absurd connection was not instantly slammed down for it. Perk of being on SCOTUS I guess.

Bloo Driver wrote:
I guess I've never seen one that is not, itself, an absurd connection (not an absurd but connected extension). I don't know who writes The Official List Of Fallacies, but I think we're pretty close to needing to edit that one onto it through misuse.

edit: This may actually backfire and further confirm your dislike of it, *but I use it all the time*. Maybe people think reductio ad absurdum is just Latin for "you're arguing semantics"?

I also think a lot of people use it without realizing it. You've probably seen it, you just didn't realize it: most relevant and well-used example I can come up with off the top of my head is when people ask those who think homosexuality is a sin because of Leviticus, if that means they should protest the local fish restaurant for serving shrimp. Everyone agrees that "shrimp are an abomination" is absurd, so you take the logic of "the Bible tells me so" and reduce it to an absurd result like 'Red Lobster is den of sin.'

CheezePavilion wrote:
Bloo Driver wrote:
I guess I've never seen one that is not, itself, an absurd connection (not an absurd but connected extension). I don't know who writes The Official List Of Fallacies, but I think we're pretty close to needing to edit that one onto it through misuse.

This may actually backfire and further confirm your dislike of it, but I use it all the time. Maybe people think reductio ad absurdum is just Latin for "you're arguing semantics?"

I also think a lot of people use it without realizing it. You've probably seen it, you just didn't realize it: most relevant example I can come up with is when people ask those who think homosexuality is a sin because of Leviticus, if that means they should protest the local fish restaurant for serving shrimp. Everyone agrees that "shrimp are an abomination" is absurd, so you take the logic of "the Bible tells me so" and reduce it to an absurd result like 'Red Lobster is den of sin.'

...I'm confused, since when did reductio ad absurdum ever mean someone was arguing semantics? Your example of the fallacy is a great example... but the point of that being that if we did everything according to Leviticus, it would be ridiculous, thus holding this one thing from Leviticus in such high regard is also a little ridiculous. It doesn't say anything nice about the person who made the initial assertation.

Demosthenes wrote:
CheezePavilion wrote:
Bloo Driver wrote:
I guess I've never seen one that is not, itself, an absurd connection (not an absurd but connected extension). I don't know who writes The Official List Of Fallacies, but I think we're pretty close to needing to edit that one onto it through misuse.

This may actually backfire and further confirm your dislike of it, but I use it all the time. Maybe people think reductio ad absurdum is just Latin for "you're arguing semantics?"

I also think a lot of people use it without realizing it. You've probably seen it, you just didn't realize it: most relevant example I can come up with is when people ask those who think homosexuality is a sin because of Leviticus, if that means they should protest the local fish restaurant for serving shrimp. Everyone agrees that "shrimp are an abomination" is absurd, so you take the logic of "the Bible tells me so" and reduce it to an absurd result like 'Red Lobster is den of sin.'

...I'm confused, since when did reductio ad absurdum ever mean someone was arguing semantics?

Sorry, I was making a joke!

Your example of the fallacy is a great example... but the point of that being that if we did everything according to Leviticus, it would be ridiculous, thus holding this one thing from Leviticus in such high regard is also a little ridiculous. It doesn't say anything nice about the person who made the initial assertion.

Right...sorry I may have been unclear: when I say "I also think a lot of people use it without realizing it" I mean people (edit) criticize the arguments of others, when those others make an argument using logic that leads to results that are absurd, even if the people doing the criticism don't know the formal name for it. In a sense, it's as simple and basic and widespread in peoples' thinking as "if all your friends jumped off a bridge, would you jump too?" as a response to "all my friends were doing it."

Soooooo... you're not saying that Scalia was right to say what he said? I'm very confused as to what your position on this is. :X

Best I can tell based on this article... Scalia said that people saying he was comparing homosexuality to animal rape or murder was a logical fallacy... then went on to talk about how we legislate based on morality with murder and that's why we should legislate against homosexuality based on morals as well... which feels like a double loop-the-loop into "wait what?"

Reductio ad absurdum can be misused and the conclusions can sometimes be just plain wrong. Like in this case.

Demosthenes wrote:
Soooooo... you're not saying that Scalia was right to say what he said? I'm very confused as to what your position on this is. :X

Oh, it's simply what I said it was: that he's not using a logical fallacy. If you're curious as to my position on the substance of what he's said, check here. Don't confuse me saying "hey, that criticism of that guy is logically wrong" for me saying "hey, the substance of what that guy said is right."

edit: basically the same thing you said up above--he's pretending like legislation must have one and only one thing backing it up. Once you allow moral feeling+harm, it's ridiculously simple to draw the distinction here.

Best I can tell based on this article... Scalia said that people saying he was comparing homosexuality to animal rape or murder was a logical fallacy... then went on to talk about how we legislate based on morality with murder and that's why we should legislate against homosexuality based on morals as well... which feels like a double loop-the-loop into "wait what?"

The logical fallacy I think he's talking about here is a straw man being attributed to him: he's not saying we should be able to legislate (it's a small but important difference in this context between that and 'we should legislate': remember, the Supreme Court doesn't always decide right or wrong--a lot of times the ruling is that it's up to the legislature to decide either way and the judiciary should stay out of it) both because they're equally bad, he's saying that we should be able to legislate both because moral feelings are a sufficient basis for legislating. Just because the legislation has the same source of legitimacy doesn't mean you think everything legislated on the basis of that source is equally bad.

edit: and of course, in defending himself from that straw man, he does open his argument up to our kinds of criticisms. The more he says "but I don't think murder and homosexuality are equally bad" the tougher time he's going to have attacking anyone's moral feelings-plus-something else argument, arguments that sidestep his reductio. In a sense, he's walking out onto quicksand here, where the more he struggles the deeper he gets.

Quintin_Stone wrote:
Reductio ad absurdum can be misused and the conclusions can sometimes be just plain wrong. Like in this case.

IMAGE(http://i21.photobucket.com/albums/b296/Bonus_Eruptus/lolpics/are_you_a_wizard.jpg)

GO BACK TO HOGWARTS

Demosthenes wrote:
Ummm... yeah except that legislating on morality generally requires some kind of societal "harm" associated with it.
Congrats to Scalia for being an idiotic jerk.

He is citing centuries of practice and precedent there. At the end of the day, if you disagree with the popular morality of your state's elected officials, vote them out. That is the American way of things. If more states seek to legalize prostitution like Nevada, they can do so. If individual states want to outlaw it, they can do that as well.

It is a big part of why I find that the 10th amendment has served far more harm than good.

Yes, I am a wizard.

It is only funny in the most terrifyingly depressing sort of way:
http://www.theonion.com/articles/i-g...

Uruguay. Yes, Uruguay.

Uruguayan lawmakers on Tuesday overwhelmingly approved a bill that would legalize same-sex marriage in the South American country.

The measure passed in the country’s House of Representatives by an 81-6 vote margin more than six hours after lawmakers began debating it.

...

“We are ending decades of institutionalized discrimination from the state,” Deputy Nicolás Núñez said as he spoke in support of the proposal.

The Uruguayan Senate is widely expected to pass the same-sex marriage bill once it reconvenes in March. President José Mujica has said he plans to sign the measure into law.

Uruguay: We're more progressive than California!


Everyone agrees that "shrimp are an abomination" is absurd, so you take the logic of "the Bible tells me so" and reduce it to an absurd result like 'Red Lobster is den of sin.'

I get the feeling you think that this is absurd, but an Orthodox Jew would not be able to eat there for that reason. Is it still an absurd reduction?

Really? The country whose name was used as a bullying tactic by the idiots at my schools from like 3rd grade on by turning it into ur-a-gay has recognized civil rights and ended discrimination before us?

Disappointed in the US yet again. Still love the country, would really love it if we could get some of our sh*t together alerady.

Robear wrote:

Everyone agrees that "shrimp are an abomination" is absurd, so you take the logic of "the Bible tells me so" and reduce it to an absurd result like 'Red Lobster is den of sin.'

I get the feeling you think that this is absurd, but an Orthodox Jew would not be able to eat there for that reason. Is it still an absurd reduction?

In a good Christian country like 'Murica, yes.

In other words "everybody" = "everybody you are arguing with"; from the article:

Speaking at Princeton University, Scalia was asked by a gay student why he equates laws banning sodomy with those barring bestiality

Zoophiliacs are all like "Yay!"

and murder.

Zoophiliacs who are not serial killers are all like "ohhh...."

i.e.: it doesn't have to lead to an absurd result for everyone for it to be a reductio. It's finding something else your opponent rejects, and then showing how the logic they use to argue for what you disagree on means they have to accept that other thing they reject. Technically even an Orthodox Jew could use this argument, and then would probably say "but I don't want to write my religion into the laws of my country."

You're right though, the more accurate translation is probably (i.e. in my estimation of what is probable, not because I know for a fact that's the etymological fact) the second one: incongruous or inconsistent, and we should probably use it.

CheezePavilion wrote:
Robear wrote:

Everyone agrees that "shrimp are an abomination" is absurd, so you take the logic of "the Bible tells me so" and reduce it to an absurd result like 'Red Lobster is den of sin.'

I get the feeling you think that this is absurd, but an Orthodox Jew would not be able to eat there for that reason. Is it still an absurd reduction?

In a good Christian country like 'Murica, yes.

In other words "everybody" = "everybody you are arguing with"; from the article:

Speaking at Princeton University, Scalia was asked by a gay student why he equates laws banning sodomy with those barring bestiality

Zoophiliacs are all like "Yay!"

and murder.

Zoophiliacs who are not serial killers are all like "ohhh...."

i.e.: it doesn't have to lead to an absurd result for everyone for it to be a reductio. It's finding something else your opponent rejects, and then showing how the logic they use to argue for what you disagree on means they have to accept that other thing they reject. Technically even an Orthodox Jew could use this argument, and then would probably say "but I don't want to write my religion into the laws of my country."

You're right though, the more accurate translation is probably (i.e. in my estimation of what is probable, not because I know for a fact that's the etymological fact) the second one: incongruous or inconsistent, and we should probably use it.

I have to say, this really made me laugh this morning.

CheezePavilion wrote:

You're right though, the more accurate translation is probably (i.e. in my estimation of what is probable, not because I know for a fact that's the etymological fact) the second one: incongruous or inconsistent, and we should probably use it.

Well, you spent a lot of time distinguishing between reduction, and reduction to the absurd. However, I posted my response to Bloo Driver specifically because he described someone not eating at Red Lobster because they serve shrimp as an "absurd" scenario. Yet it exists in real life. I was trying to show that even in cases where we might think we've found something absurd to us, it's quite possible that it's not actually absurd or even unusual. It was a simple counter-example, in other words.

Robear wrote:
CheezePavilion wrote:

You're right though, the more accurate translation is probably (i.e. in my estimation of what is probable, not because I know for a fact that's the etymological fact) the second one: incongruous or inconsistent, and we should probably use it.

Well, you spent a lot of time distinguishing between reduction, and reduction to the absurd. However, I posted my response to Bloo Driver specifically because he described someone not eating at Red Lobster because they serve shrimp as an "absurd" scenario. Yet it exists in real life. I was trying to show that even in cases where we might think we've found something absurd to us, it's quite possible that it's not actually absurd or even unusual. It was a simple counter-example, in other words.

An absurd extension of that scenario would be to outlaw Red Lobster. Saying it's evil or just boycotting it is actually very reasonable and consistent.

In the case of Red Lobster, its existence does nothing to harm Hasidic Jews. Outlawing Red Lobster because Jews find it morally repugnant to eat shellfish is absurd in a nation where religious freedom is a civil right. I have heard no single compelling or even logically sound argument that successfully shows what kind of harm gay marriage that exists alongside heterosexual marriage could or would do. That something that has a mountain of precedent as a civil right should be limited to heterosexual marriage because a segment (a shrinking segment) of the population finds gay marriage morally repugnant is as absurd as outlawing Red Lobster.

Robear wrote:
CheezePavilion wrote:

You're right though, the more accurate translation is probably (i.e. in my estimation of what is probable, not because I know for a fact that's the etymological fact) the second one: incongruous or inconsistent, and we should probably use it.

Well, you spent a lot of time distinguishing between reduction, and reduction to the absurd. However, I posted my response to Bloo Driver specifically because he described someone not eating at Red Lobster because they serve shrimp as an "absurd" scenario. Yet it exists in real life. I was trying to show that even in cases where we might think we've found something absurd to us, it's quite possible that it's not actually absurd or even unusual. It was a simple counter-example, in other words.

Oh okay--you wound up quoting me instead. That's why I thought you were asking me a question. I think I understand now.

Leviticus 11:11-13 wrote:
And all that have not fins and scales in the seas, and in the rivers, of all that move in the waters, and of any living thing which is in the waters, they shall be an abomination unto you:

They shall be even an abomination unto you; you shall not eat of their flesh, but you shall hold their carcasses in abomination.

Whatever has no fins nor scales in the waters, that shall be an abomination to you.

Burn the Red Lobsters!

Paleocon wrote:
Leviticus 11:11-13 wrote:
And all that have not fins and scales in the seas, and in the rivers, of all that move in the waters, and of any living thing which is in the waters, they shall be an abomination unto you:

They shall be even an abomination unto you; you shall not eat of their flesh, but you shall hold their carcasses in abomination.

Whatever has no fins nor scales in the waters, that shall be an abomination to you.

Burn the Red Lobsters!

Huh. Technically Deep Ones should be kashrut, then..

Paleocon wrote:
Burn the Red Lobsters!

I favor this plan, not because I keep kosher, but as a matter of good taste and a love of seafood.

SpacePPoliceman wrote:
Paleocon wrote:
Burn the Red Lobsters!

I favor this plan, not because I keep kosher, but as a matter of good taste and a love of seafood.

Hey now... I can't speak to seafood... but their Cajun Chicken Alfredo is heavenly.

Demosthenes wrote:
SpacePPoliceman wrote:
Paleocon wrote:
Burn the Red Lobsters!

I favor this plan, not because I keep kosher, but as a matter of good taste and a love of seafood.

Hey now... I can't speak to seafood... but their Cajun Chicken Alfredo is heavenly.


Fun Fact: There are no Red Lobster's in Maine, New Hampshire, Vermont, Massachusetts, or Rhode Island. The only state in New England where they currently have restaurants is Connecticut.