Saturday, March 30, 2013

The "Sneaky" Smear

I have promised my dearest wife not to get into political discussions with mutual friends on Facebook. Most of our mutual friends are family, and (in most cases) the last thing we want to do is alienate them.

For me, a late-blooming political junkie, this is hard. As a general rule I don't initiate a political discussion on Facebook. If I find an interesting article that I think is worth sharing and it's not stridently ideological in tone, I will occasionally link to it on FB.

On the other hand, a number of my FB friends post or share provocative articles of a political nature. Now, I really try to not get into ideological discussions in this type of forum. People have ideological positions, and while a debate may be interesting it rarely resolves anything and FB is definitely NOT the forum for this kind of debate.

What I do have a tendency to do is refute misleading claims or outright falsehoods that other people post. This has gotten me into sometimes nasty discussions on the comments of these posts. For instance, someone may post a claim that the ACA (Obamacare) includes "death panels." Now I'm more knowledgeable than the average person when it comes to Obamacare, because I followed the legislative process, I've read much of the law, and I took a college course on the ACA. So I know that the "death panels" claim is false. And I really have an aversion to letting such claims go unanswered.

Since I have a good number of friends and relatives on Facebook who are of a different political persuasion than me, I end up with a sore tongue from having to bite it and not post a response. Sometimes I start to reply, but then I stop and think, "Better not."

All this is prelude to explaining why I would link to the following video:

The video and the post on Facebook are titled "Shock Video: Planned Parenthood Endorses Post-Birth Abortion".

The video is apparently a state legislative committee hearing in which an official of Planned Parenthood is being questioned about a proposed bill that would place new restrictions on abortions or abortion service providers. Clearly, Planned Parenthood would in most cases be against any laws that attempt to further restrict access to abortion services, and the official apparently opposes this bill. But the bill's authors have inserted a requirement that if an abortion results in a "live birth", the baby must be transported to a hospital where live-saving care can be given. Now, the incident of such a "live birth" of a viable fetus is extremely rare, and the PP official questions how often it would occur. Furthermore, the PP official suggests that a doctor would ordinarily make the call on what actions to take based on medical ethics and the Hippocratic oath. In other words, this requirement is unnecessary and places an unnecessary burden on abortion service providers.

The hearing's questioners try every which way to get the PP official to say she supports the "practice" of letting a post-abortion live baby die "on the table." They are unsuccessful in actually getting her to say such a thing, but by innuendo they have succeeded in getting people to BELIEVE the woman has done this and proliferate the video over the Internet and FaceBook. It is nothing more than a smear against Planned Parenthood.

Imagine Wayne LaPierre testifying before Congress on a bill that limits the number of bullets in magazines with a rider that requires that the living victim of a gunshot wound be afforded medical attention. Clearly LaPierre would fight against the bill, but the bill's supporters can say that the NRA supports gunshot victims being left in the street to bleed to death. That, too, would be a smear.

OK, I can't post this on FaceBook, but at least I've had a chance to vent.


Anonymous Anonymous said...

From what I gather your politics are about, thats a great idea.

"It is better to keep your mouth closed and let people think you are a fool than to open it and remove all doubt."
Mark Twain

5:28 AM, March 04, 2016  

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