Since the Supreme Court decision on the Affordable Care Act, I have spent a lot of time debating the issue with some conservatives. This isn’t another attempt to do that. This is a discussion of the problems I have with debating these people.
I have a fairly simple request when I debate people…support your arguments. It’s not a difficult thing to do if you are using sound, reasoned arguments. That’s the problem. While I did have a couple of people actually use sources, the majority of these people just posted the same recycled arguments that they have heard on television, radio, or read on their conservative websites. After using articles from peer-reviewed journals and trusted sources that included facts and figures, I was met with people who just chose to turn a blind eye. First, they would try to dispute the validity of the facts and figures. Unless there is a valid reason to dispute them, such as them coming from an untrustworthy source, they are valid. For statistics like the population of the United States, the commonly accepted trusted source is the Census Department. (Yes, I used this and it was questioned.) Then they would attack the journal articles. Now, I’m not saying everyone has to agree, but don’t tell me an article from a scholarly, peer-reviewed journal is invalid if you haven’t even read the research and have a real point of opposition. Because you don’t like the fact that it totally invalidates most of your argument is not justification for the conclusions being valid. These kinds of articles are the standard for academic discussion. Finally, in a last, desperate attempt to have an argument, my citations were completely ignored. I was first told that I didn’t use any, and when I proved it, I was told all of my information was refuted. Well, that’s pretty impossible since I know that not one person I was debating can refute the Census Department or a journal article for which they only have access to read the abstract.
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Now, I have some friends who might read this and say, “Wait a minute! I don’t do that.” I do have some conservative friends who can give me a very challenging and worthy debate. I have even lost debates with a couple of them (I’m looking at you, Josh.) Not because I think my position was wrong, just because I wasn’t prepared enough to provide reasonable responses. Obviously, this is not directed at those people. In fact, none of those people even attempted to debate the issue. (I wonder why?)
After two days of repeating myself over and over for two days and having people stare at the face of my arguments and ignore reason, I have grown tired. I usually enjoy these kinds of debates. I like proving people wrong. It’s even easy in most cases. But, when the only response you get is nonsense, it stops being fun. I have fully embraced the fact that I am truly a full-blooded liberal at heart. I don’t apologize for it, and I don’t apologize for the fact that I think conservative philosophy is nonsense founded in stupidity. All I’m asking is, please, for the love of Pete, have at least some standards when you debate me. While I love stomping on conservative ideas, it’s becoming too easy. It’s almost not even fun anymore. Almost.
|© Keith Tucker|