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lukeprog comments on Are Deontological Moral Judgments Rationalizations? - Less Wrong

38 Post author: lukeprog 16 August 2011 04:40PM

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Comment author: lukeprog 16 August 2011 08:12:18PM *  5 points [-]

Alicorn,

I'm pretty confused by how you're interpreting my words. Three examples:

ONE

What i said, direct quote:

The point you raise about 'the deontological answer' is discussed by Greene in his article. I had to do a lot of cutting to keep this article as short as it is, and it's still pretty long. I can't pre-respond to every possible objection. Perhaps you could raise the issue and allow me to respond instead of assuming I haven't considered the points you raise and am therefore worthy of your disappointment?

What you heard me say (disconnects from what I actually said, in italics):

His article was too long anyway and I should read the rest of the quoted author, rather than expecting that Luke would mention it or abridge his selected quotes differently if he was aware of the issues therewith and wished to disclaim them.

TWO

What I said, direct quote:

So now your objection is to my tone? That's only DH2 on the disagreement heirarchy. I'll take another look at my tone, but it's not much of a disagreement if we're disagreeing about tone.

What you heard me say (disconnects from what I actually said, in italics):

It is wrong of me to complain about his tone.

THREE

I'm similarly confused with the abortion thing. Here's the play-by-play as I see it above:

  1. You point out that one reason pro-lifers wouldn't press charges against a woman who has an abortion is that it's not illegal.

  2. I ask:

    Why not seek the murder charges in court so that abortions come to be considered murder? [...because of a court overruling the previous laws that make abortions not count as murder; was this the part that was unclear?] Why not seek to change the laws so that women who commit abortions will be convicted of murder, or at least for paying a doctor to commit murder?

  3. You repeat the previous point about not "charging women with crimes the scope of which does not legally apply", even though I had just moved the question to: "Why not change the laws so that the murder charge does apply to women who commit abortions (either via a courts victory or new laws passing)?"

  4. I point out that I've already moved beyond the point that the 'murder' charge doesn't apply (because abortion isn't currently illegal or counted as murder) by asking instead why pro-lifers don't seek to make abortion illegal (and murder).

  5. You claim I still haven't responded to your point.

...Is one or more of us just too tired to follow a conversation or something? Outside help wanna chip in?

Comment author: komponisto 16 August 2011 08:37:55PM 4 points [-]

On the third matter, one problem is that you seem to display confusion about the structure of (U.S.) law:

Why not seek the murder charges in court so that abortions come to be considered murder? [...because of a court overruling the previous laws that make abortions not count as murder; was this the part that was unclear?] Why not seek to change the laws so that women who commit abortions will be convicted of murder, or at least for paying a doctor to commit murder?

Laws are not created in courts by means of attempted prosecutions being successful; they are created by a vote in a legislative body (and then sometimes struck down by courts as violating a meta-law). Currently, there is no law against abortion, so a prosecution could not be brought (not just that it wouldn't be successful). Furthermore, there is also currently a meta-law against making abortion illegal -- so it would be futile for pro-lifers to simply petition their legislatures to do so. What they would have to do is first attempt to get the meta-law reversed, and if you follow American politics at all, you will be aware that there has indeed been an active movement to do this for a number of decades now.

Having said all that, I consider your basic point to stand in light of this.

Comment author: lukeprog 16 August 2011 09:09:39PM -1 points [-]

I'm thinking of an (overreaching) Supreme Court decision.

Comment author: komponisto 16 August 2011 09:53:47PM *  4 points [-]

This response, while not uninformative about your thinking, suggests to me that you merely skimmed my comment rather than reading it carefully and integrating the detailed information it provided.

If I had to identify the source of this impression, it would be your apparent failure to recognize that the Supreme Court had been specifically referenced (albeit not by name) -- as was the fact (seemingly not as familiar to you as I would have expected) that pro-lifers have indeed been actively seeking a decision in their favor (this is the primary reason that judicial nominations are usually controversial in contemporary America).

I don't mean to be critical (I much appreciated the post), but I just hate it when people underestimate the information content of my words.

Comment author: lukeprog 16 August 2011 10:07:30PM *  0 points [-]

Having grown up a midwestern evangelical Christian, I assure you I'm familiar with the decades-long attempt to overturn Roe v. Wade, and indeed once signed a petition in support of such an overturn. What I'm saying is that overturning Roe v. Wade with a new Supreme Court decision wouldn't be the same as an even greater overreaching Supreme Court decision that set a precedent for considering abortion to be murder, with those committing abortion being subject to the usual punishments for murder.

Comment author: komponisto 16 August 2011 10:52:55PM 1 point [-]

Having grown up a midwestern evangelical Christian, I assure you I'm familiar with the decades-long attempt to overturn Roe v. Wade,

That's what I would have thought! Thanks for the clarification. However, you did seem to be wondering why pro-lifers don't try to pursue their goals in court; and seeking to overturn Roe is the only way they can do that.

an even greater overreaching Supreme Court decision that set a precedent for considering abortion to be murder

Well, the Supreme Court could use the "murder" rationale to reverse Roe, if it wanted to do so; and were the decision to be reconsidered in a new case, do you have any doubt that pro-life groups would file amicus briefs urging them to do just that?

Comment author: lukeprog 16 August 2011 11:05:01PM 1 point [-]

the Supreme Court could use the "murder" rationale to reverse Roe, if it wanted to do so; and were the decision to be reconsidered in a new case, do you have any doubt that pro-life groups would file amicus briefs urging them to do just that?

Yes, I doubt they would do this, given the fact that I haven't found anyone yet who actually wants women who abort fetuses to be punished on a par with, shall we say, 'other kinds of murderers'; multiple decades of imprisonment, or life imprisonment, or death.

Comment author: Davorak 22 August 2011 09:05:49AM 0 points [-]

I have heard people talk of punishing abortion on par with other kinds of murder. This view point has the real potential to alienate people. It makes sense that people with that view point and realize this are not shouting it to the world or filing court cases. Instead they judge small changes are the best way to get what they want in the long term and fight those intermediary battles instead of taking it straight on.

Comment author: komponisto 16 August 2011 11:35:19PM 0 points [-]

Interesting. You may be right, at least about the most mainstream groups (though the fringe would also participate, surely).

I won't trouble you further on this, since I have an attack to fend off over in Discussion. :-)

Thanks for replying to me and others.

Comment author: Alicorn 16 August 2011 08:28:49PM 0 points [-]

I've stated that I don't want to continue having this conversation with you. The summary in the grandparent was for komponisto.

Comment author: Davorak 22 August 2011 08:57:46AM 5 points [-]

For the people down who would down vote this, is it better if she did not respond to lukeprog's post at all? Acknowledging someone when they attempt to communicate to you is considered polite. It often serves the purpose communicating a lack of spite and/or hard feels even as you insist on ending the current conversation.