Saturday, April 16, 2005

Opinion - You are missing the point

Why are progressives, democrats and even some republicans on the losing side of arguments that, quite frankly, they should be winning?

The starting premise, by itself, is determining the battle. And we agree with it...hence, we are fighting a battle that starts in our own territory.

Three examples:

  1. Abortion. Starting premise: it should not be used as a means of birth control. Everyone agrees. Premise stated, premise agreed to, argument lost. Why? Because abortion IS birth control!
  2. Gay marriage. Starting premise: marriage is between a man and a woman. Everyone agrees. Premise stated, premise agreed to, argument lost. Why? Because men and women get married all the time!
  3. Bankruptcy reform. Starting premise: people should pay the bills THEY incur. Everyone agrees. Premise stated, premise agreed to, argument lost. Why? Because personal responsibility is the goal of everyone!
Three positions, three losses, all because at the very root of the argument, everyone agrees with the premise that starts the argument. It becomes an uphill battle.

Change the argument:
  1. Abortion. Abortion IS birth control, everything else is PREGNANCY control. Why does someone need the permission of a doctor to get PREGNANCY control? (some call that a prescription)
  2. Gay Marriage. Since when does a RELIGIOUS ceremony dictate PUBLIC policy? A marriage (today) is a LEGAL CONTRACT. Why does the government want to prevent two consenting adults from entering into a contract?
  3. Bankruptcy reform. What happens when a person loses their job? Debtor's prison?
I am yelling too much, sorry. When someone comments that you are avoiding the initial premise, simply say,

"I agree with your premise so what? The consequences of your position create a situation that is at the heart of the discussion, why do you wish to ignore those consequences? Isn't personal responsibility all about accepting the consequences?"

United Airlines can declare bankruptcy and void the contracts it has with it's employees. Nothing in the reform bill will change that. Does that mean when United employees start defaulting on debt taken out prior to their contract being voided they will get bankruptcy relief? Hell no. They have to take responsibility for their their bills.

I have been pro-choice for a long time....not just about abortion....about anything. I should have the inalienable right to CHOOSE. But that choice comes with consequences, and I should be able to hold those I CHOOSE to align with to the same rules we started out with.

So, give me 7 years. Allow me to reduce or eliminate my debt over the next 7 years and any new debt that I incur will be subject to the new bankruptcy bill, but any debt I have now will be under the old law for 7 years....

Hey, it's Biblical.


No comments: