Monday, March 10, 2008

Confused or Lying?

There's a new post by Ron over on the blog for "Tell the Truth" Coalition. I read it last night and it's taken me a while to process what I was reading. I knew there was something wrong, but couldn't put my finger on it. I was confused. The post was making claims that didn't follow from earlier claims.

It is now a day later and I have realised the problem: it's full of non sequiturs. I had been rendered dumb by the sheer inanity of it all. Having realised the problem, and now recovered, my analysis follows.

The central claim:
abortion causes more abortion.

The evidence:

Well, none actually.

What is being claimed as evidence, however, is that a study by Dr. Sabura Allen of Monash University, presented at the International Congress on Women's Mental Health and reported on in the Herald Sun, shows that women who are living with Depression have more sex than women who are not living with Depression. Let's call this C1.

Following this is the claim that abortion is directly linked to depression, a claim that has already been shown to false. Anyhow, this be C2.

The next claim is that women who have one abortion are more likely to have another abortion. This is actually the Conclusion. Let us call it Con for short.

From there it is further claimed that the reason for the Con is that women
will be having more sex in a desperate attempt to find the love you have just lost.

Yes, it is an inane claim, but it counts as C3.

So, do the claims merit the Con? No.

Although I have not read the study (it is yet to be published) and have only a newspaper report to go on, it is reasonable at this stage to believe that C1 is true. I urge the reader to go to the linked article for further clarification of what the study actually describes on this point. As noted earlier, C2 has been debunked. By stating C2 Ron is attempting to not only assert that abortion causes depression, but infer that a woman who does obtain an abortion will develop a Depressive Illness. He is also attempting to create a causal loop, a vicious cycle a woman is in grave danger of slipping in to, whereby (⇒) abortion ⇒ promiscuity ⇒ abortion ⇒ promiscuity ⇒ , and so on. It is a lie. Correlation does not equal causation, but it is an error to think so that many people do commit in all manner of circumstances. Anyhow, no such correlation has even been established.

The final claim, C3, is a pernicious little statement. It is attempting to assert that the reason a woman becomes 'promiscuous' (because she is Depressed, remember) is because she has had an abortion. The "love you have just lost" is a reference to the embryo or foetus of the women and the pregnancy she has aborted. It is a gross lie.

I mentioned at the beginning that the post by Ron was full of non sequiturs. This is because none of the claims follows the others, in whatever order one tries to put them in, and none lead to the Con. It is a confused mess of an argument. One might be generous and allow for some errors in logic by presuming the arguer does not know that non sequiturs make a mess of, and destroys, their argument. One might further point out such error in an attempt to educate. One can not be so generous in this instance. The argument presented by Ron is typical of anti-choice campaigners. They will lie, distort, and manipulate evidence in their attempts to convince others of the rightness of their position. When shown the errors they have have committed, they ignore it, and persist with their lies.

1 comment:

  1. Unfortunately there are too many people that believe everything they read without any evidence to support it. Mainly because they already believe in it and such articles or blogs are nothing but confirmation of their beliefs.