Categorized | Politics, Religion

Dehumanizing Opponents

A behavior one can observe is how the Anti-RHB groups have actually attempted to dehumanize their opponents. One can easily see it in the headlines as Bishops accuse Pro-RH people of immorality in public online discussions. The readiness of the Anti-RHB to never understand a side that understands them all too well is apparent. It flies in the face of common sense when the Anti-RHB assume that these former Catholics or Christians or Pro-RH Christians do not understand their faith. Opposition having come from their own ranks, it never occurs to them that they already know or that they did not understand the teachings enough. This arrogant and distorted view has led to many clashes and polarized the discussion.

It does not help that the Anti-RHB people do not even provide adequate scientific backing to their arguments. Practically all of these arguments, and I’m not generalizing, are very poorly constructed. Most of the time there are no links or sources cited. Most of the arguments are anecdotal and follow poor logic, falling into logical fallacies like argumentum vericundum, negative premise, fallacy of illicit process, and a lot of self-reliant fallacies. One of the “strongest” evidences posted fail miserably in the fact checking. As an example, look at the  medical primer for the RHB by Dr. Angelita Miguel-Aguirre.

Fallacy of illicit process: Julian Simmons and Professor Gary Becke talk about overpopulation with respect to WORLD capacity, not the nation’s economic capacity. Their books and abstractions can be found in this link . It would be only fair for their views to be clarified if they really pertain to allowing families to grow sustainably in an emerging and poor market like the Philippines, especially since the Nobel prize they were awarded dealt with an entirely separate issue from Reproductive Health.

Quote-mining and fallacy of illicit process: regarding Edward C. Green’s research on the condom use in Uganda.

Obsolete and Debunked Studies: Barbara Seaman: the Pill and I 40 Years on the Relationship and the latest technology regarding contraceptive pills.

Because they have wasted people’s time with really poor and invalid evidence and continue to provoke and harass the Pro-RHB people, the credibility of such people have come to a point that they are no longer seen as worthy of proper attention or respect. Wasting people’s time, provoking them,  continuously giving the same poorly constructed arguments, and ignoring well constructed counter-arguments are actions that can only be interpreted negatively.

What is compounding the damage is the language that assumes that their opponents don’t understand anything Christian, theological, moral or ethical, that these people who are of their same faith know nothing about these things and that only they are the sole source of authority to be worth listening to.

As their actions have crossed the line to many of the Pro-RHB people and pointed out with the negative language that best describes those that act in that method, a vicious cycle is created. Their ability to selectively choose information, also known as confirmation bias, makes them think their provocation is justified and they continue to pursue a strategy of repetition. The very repetition is already a symptom of severe mental tunnel vision, being unable to act dynamically to the individual circumstances of a given situation. Cut off from rationality, they will continue to repeat this strategy until they grow tired of having severely damaged all credibility of their cause for lack of a more diplomatic solution.

DISCLAIMER: The opinions in this post do not necessarily represent the position of the Filipino Freethinkers.