In a little rant titled, "Abortion & Catholicism: Can't You Find Something Better To Do?", Danielle Cavallucci of the Huff-and-Puff Post breaks out a dictionary and throws down her daunting arguments against pro-lifers. Note the stunning mixture of techniques:
Uh, wow. That sounds like Derrida on crack to me. Speaking of crack, I wonder if Ms. Cavallucci is opposed to people using crack. If so, why? What right does she have to force her outmoded vestiges of anti-substance abuse manipulation on a rapidly changing world, blah, blah, blah?
• The "I care about Mother Earth and you don't" argument: "Firstly, forcing a woman who's been victimized by rape or incest to carry a child to term flies in the face of decency. Secondly, bringing unwanted children into an already over-populated world is simply irresponsible, an homage to the blatant disrespect the church has frequently had for the plight of women, Mother Earth included."
Firstly, don't ever use the word "firstly." It's screams, "I'm trying way too hard to sound really smart!" Firstly-and-a-half, what sense of decency denounces rape or incest but supports the killing of an unborn child? Firstly-and-three-quarters, the language of "wanted/unwanted" avoids the fact of what the baby is (a person) and what is being done (the person is being killed). Last time I looked, Mother Church was the largest health care provider on Mother Earth, even while Mother Earth has never built a hospital, run an orphanage, worked at a crisis pregnancy center, or changed a diaper. In fact, Mother Earth has never sent me a Christmas card or ever called me.
• Appeal to Scripture and Church History in a non-appealing way: "The fact that the Catholic church has nothing better to do, advancing an illogical cause premised on the shaky foundation of scriptures translated so far after the fact and inclusive of only what suited the desires of the largest land holding entity in Europe for nearly a thousand years is horrific."
What "fact"? What in the world is she referring to? Is she unfamiliar with the philosophical and natural law arguments against abortion? (Yes, that's a rhetorical question. I doubt her "Radical Feminism in 18th-century Greenland" class covered that stuff.) This is like writing, "The Lakers are going to win the NBA Finals because George Mikan was a legend in tight shorts and the game of basketball no longer uses peach baskets, but David Stern is a lawyer." Except that makes more sense than what she wrote.
• Shrill hysteria disguised as moral outrage: "The fact that any evolved human being cannot see the folly of these acts and arguments is nothing short of criminal."
The fact that "these acts and arguments" are not presented with any cogency or clarity is a serious shortcoming of this third-grade level approach to argument: "Hey, any stupid-head can see I was playing on the swing set before Billy!" And if it's criminal to disagree with her, I suppose I'm a felon ten times over, without possibility of parole.
• The "I'm a Catholic, Too! Not Really!" Card: "Now, don't get me wrong -- I love me some mass on Sunday. It's a tradition, a comfort, an unhealthy attachment. The 'picking and choosing' part of remaining Catholic is something many claim is fine. It feels hypocritical to me."
Well, who am I to argument with feelings? Come to think of it, what sort of person attempts to argue from their feelings? Yes, that's right: people who don't have real arguments, but do have feelings. (There are a lot of them out there.)
• The "I don't understand you or your position but I'm still smarter than you" approach: "Maybe all you 'good' Right to Life Catholics can pray for my brain to evaporate because what you're doing makes absolutely no sense, and there are more pressing issues worthy of your time, energy and resources."
I love it. She spends the entire...thing...saying how horrible it is that pro-lifers force people to have babies and want to make mothers do this and that—and then she turns around and tells us what to do and not do. Typical liberal logic: "Do as I say, not as logic, tradition, commonsense, and a good conscience tells you to do."
Now, I'm sure you're wondering: "Well, Carl, that was interesting. But can't you find something better to do?" Yes, indeed I can. In fact, I really feel like I can. Who can argue with that?