The Gay “Marriage” Slippery Slope

One common logical fallacy is that of the slippery slope. It goes something like this, “If we allow X, then Y, which is much worse, is soon to follow. This will be followed by Z, which is even worse.” While this is a logical fallacy (in part because you assume a worst-case scenario in predicting the future), on occasion it does represent the actual order of events in real life.

Here’s an example of a slippery slope. In 2000 the Vermont legislature approved civil unions for same-sex couples. While some were content with the law, others kept hoping it led to a new definition of marriage. They wanted to be fully “married” and not just “unionized.” They were honest about the slippery slope – they never denied it exists, although many downplay the significance of redefining marriage (civil unions are just a small step away).

In one news article back in 2000, we read: “‘All of the horrible things that opponents say will happen are not going to happen,’ adds David Smith, a spokesman for The Human Rights Campaign, the largest gay rights group in America. ‘Hopefully, by example, many parts of the country and many people will become more comfortable with the idea.'” This reminds me of Alexander Pope’s immortal quote: “Vice is a monster of so frightful mein, as, to be hated needs but to be seen; Yet seen too oft, familiar with her face, We first endure, then pity, then embrace.” That’s what same-sex “marriage” advocates want. They want the public to be familiar with the idea of gay “marriage” then we will eventually embrace it fully.

Here’s a similar quote in a New York Times article: “Gay rights advocates say they are eager to show that the sky will not fall. ‘Same-sex couples will be forming civil unions and the state’s not going to fall apart,” said Beth Robinson, a lead lawyer in the case that prompted the civil unions law. ”It’s just going to be better, and that’s going to be the most helpful part of this dialogue. Because the longer we go with the law in effect, the more incredible the claims of our opponents will be exposed as being.” Yet, proponents of same-sex “marriage” have no problem trying to force acceptance of their immorality on society as a whole.

Now the Vermont senate just approved gay “marriage”; it is expected that the bill will pass through the house without a hitch. The governor may veto the bill though – he supports traditional marriage. However, it is likely that the legislative branch could override the veto. This case of the legislative branch trying to redefine marriage is different from what has been done in other states – the legislative branch, for once, is actually making the law; it’s not a court ruling legislating from the bench.

However, a caption from the article about the issue is a little misleading though: “Vermont could become the first state to legalize same-sex marriage without prompting from courts.” Even though the courts were not involved directly, they were in the 2000 legalization of same-sex civil unions. Back then the state supreme court forced the legislature to pass something on the matter; instead of gay “marriage” they allowed civil unions. So, it really was court action that lead to the recent passed bill allowing same-sex “marriages”.

We just need to hope that the Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA) stands so other states (and the federal government) are not forced to recognize same-sex “marriages” (or even civil unions). We also need to deliberate very carefully about same-sex civil unions because a slippery slope really does exist in this case. As a nation, we’ve slid from view marriages as sacred institutions for raising children, to viewing them as little more than legal arrangements then to not really valuing them other than as self-serving ways to enhance personal satisfaction (hence all the divorces when people feel justly or unjustly victimized), then to inconveniences (and we certainly can’t have any inconviencing children!), and lastly to any relationship between any two (or more, in some cases) people, regardless of gender. The majority of people in the U.S. still believe that marriage should be just between a man and a woman but the times, they are a’changin’, as Bob Dylan sings. This change is not progress; it’s immoral.

There Is No Such Thing as Nuclear Waste –

There Is No Such Thing as Nuclear Waste –

This Op-Ed article in the Wall Street Journal clearly explains why we should build new nuclear power plants and allow the reprocessing of nuclear fuel. Pres. Obama at best said that he’s open to nuclear energy but he’s not very keen about it. That’s unfortunate. He has the opportunity to completely pull the United States away from dependence on foreign oil by embracing and pushing for more nuclear energy. We could build more nuclear plants and allow the reprocessing of fuel and have more energy than we know what to do with. If Pres. Obama pushed for electric cars (more importantly, if consumers and manufacturers pushed for them), we could in effect have nuclear-powered automobiles.

Nuclear plants are safe. They are much safer than just about any other power plant. In my opinion, radical environmentalists of the 1960s and 1970s (even continuing on to today) did far more damage to the global environment than any other group. Because of radical environmentalists’ scare-mongering and lies (or at least gross misrepresentations), Pres. Ford and Pres. Carter effectually killed off nuclear energy. The last new nuclear power plant went online in 1996 (although there have been a few new ones approved recently). It was designed using nuclear technology from the 1970s. Nuclear power technology has advance considerably since then. Because our use of nuclear energy stagnated in the 1970s, we’ve had large increases of reliance on coal and oil for energy. As a result, we’ve had years of fossil fuels and carbon-dioxide emissions that otherwise could have been reduced by allowing more nuclear power and the reprocessing of spent fuel rods. Additionally, coal plants dump many tons of radioactive material into the atmosphere every year as well.

Nuclear power was never the problem; the hatred of nuclear power and the very successful but untrue propaganda campaign of the radical environmentalists is the problem. The environmentalists even convinced the general public that the nuclear meltdown at 3 Mile Island was a major catastrophe (it didn’t help to have The China Syndrome come out shortly before the partial meltdown). Many of us are exposed to higher levels of radiation every day than were leaked at 3 Mile Island. It’s time for the U.S. to stop believing the lies of the radical environmentalists and start building more nuclear power plants. At the very least, they provide a very clean and reliable short and long-term source of energy until other technologies such as wind and solar become more economically feasible and able to provide a majority of our energy needs (which isn’t likely for many years). The problem is that it takes many thousands (6-7 thousand at least) of wind generators to produce the same amount of energy 1 modern nuclear can produce. Wind generators also have variable rates of production. The same is true with solar generators. While I think wind and solar generators are wonderful ways to convert energy to electricity, they just are not as feasible as nuclear generators.

Pres. Obama and Congress are missing a major opportunity to push for nuclear energy and electric cars (and hydrogen fuel cells as well). Many Democrats (and Republicans too) are blinded by the craftiness of radical environmentalists. We as citizens generally are likewise blinded. Nuclear power is not something to be feared; it’s powerful and it can be dangerous but so are all other forms of energy. Nuclear energy is about as green as energy can be. We could build many nuclear plants within a short time-frame and have more than enough cheap energy. We have the technology now; it’s good and safe technology too. We need to stop being afraid of nuclear energy.

If you want to see how safe nuclear power plants are from terrorist or military attacks, watch this video of a jet crashing into a concrete wall (much like ones built to encase nuclear reactors).

6 years later, progress and doubts are legacy of Iraq war –

6 years later, progress and doubts are legacy of Iraq war –

The war in Iraq started 6 years ago. As is noted in the CNN article, it is one of America’s longest wars. However, it is one of the least deadly wars we’ve fought. There have been 4,261 American fatalities in just under 2200 days. That’s less than 2 deaths a day (of Americans – there have been many more Iraqis killed). Any death is too much but we have to face the truth that as far as America is concerned, this has been a very “safe” war. It cost us a lot of money but can you put a price tag on freedom and democracy? I have to add that I don’t think we should have started the war in Iraq but we did so the point is moot.

If the troops had been home instead, quite a few of them would have died in car accidents or other accidents, statistically speaking. 18-30 year old men are naturally quite accident-prone so it’s a statistical given that there would be many accident-related and natural deaths in that group. There are about 42,000,000 people between the ages of 15 and 25 in the United States. While that include people a little younger (and not quite as old as some of the soldiers in Iraq, it will serve as a decent estimate for this post). Roughly 162 per 100,000 people between 15 and 25 die each year in the United States (Source). According to one NewsWeek source, by December 2007 there had been 1.5 million troops deployed to Iraq. This number is higher than another one I found (500,000 by July 2006); it doesn’t seem likely that there were 1,000,000 different troops deployed in the subsequent 16 months.

For my analysis, I’ll make an estimate and say there have been 1,100,000 deployments since the start of the war. That means that at those numbers, if the soldiers were all home from Iraq (and not deployed elsewhere) we would expect approximately 1,800 deaths. That’s possibly high because the number of deployments does not equal number of people. I’ll be a little more conservative and say there have been 900,000 different people from the U.S. deployed. That means there would have been about 1450 deaths over the same time period if all the troops were home.

My numbers could be off because I haven’t found a good definitive source for the number of individuals deployed in the past 6 years in Iraq. The number could be anywhere between 700,000 and 1,700,000, which is not very precise. My numbers are also off because the demographic data I used to calculate my numbers was a combination of 15-19 and 20-24 age groups. The military tends to be 18-25 with a significant number on into their 30s. Most are in their 20s though. The numbers should be accurate enough for this informal analysis.

In any case, this means that of the 4,261 deaths in Iraq, the number of deaths above and beyond a national baserate of death for that age group is about 2,700. That’s still a lot of people but overall it’s been a fairly “safe” war. [Note: I know there have been many physical and psychological injuries caused by the war; my post was focused strictly on deaths].