I recently participated in a discussion on capital punishment, the history, legal implications and moral issues. I quickly came to realize that some participants had no clue about the topic and yet, they still wanted to be relevant participants. Deflection!
I made a point on morality and how I believe in the old adage, it’s better to let ten guilty men go free than convict one innocent man. One person responded as follows: “If the DP should be rejected because it might kill an innocent, then how do you reconcile it with your conscience to accept and use devices that kill innocents on a daily basis like automobiles, airplanes, fire and electricity?” My response? What he described are accidents, not murder.
He then asked why I haven’t condemned President Obama for killing Osama bin Laden. Deflection! He can’t make his point staying on topic so let’s move to something else and attempt to compare apples and oranges. I said that we’re not talking about war or accidents. All I could think was, “ah, but that’s what he’s talking about.”
You don’t have to come to my side of the argument but, if you’re going to argue, be able to do it with some knowledge and authority. Don’t deflect the argument to a topic you’d rather discuss because you don’t know enough about the present topic. Don’t tell me that I should focus my attention on the military and on the police because they kill innocent people as well. You can’t possibly make that comparison, at least not rationally. Come to the discussion, please, but be educated.
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