Wednesday, June 18, 2008

Same Obfuscations

I just found Jesurgislac's blog via a link from Common Sense Political Thought, and it's good to know that some things just never change.

I've pretty much ignored Jes since it lied about my various positions, then left CSPT in a huff about a year ago. Periodically, Jes will recycle these claims when I comment at Pandagon or some other leftwing site, but, at some point, even the people there don't care.

What made me giggle after reading this post is how Jes's argument style--namely, to avoid providing any supporting evidence for its claims--hasn't changed a bit. A pro-life supporter asked Jes to provide citations supporting its claims that abstinence-only education results in higher rates of teen pregnancy, STDs, and abortions.

Kathy: I’ve heard this before. Do you have any studies that show this?

Jes: So, you can’t pretend ignorance: You know that advocating “abstinence education” does nothing to prevent teenage pregnancies and abortions, and yet you continue to support it over, hey, here’s a novel idea - preventing abortions.

Like I said: it’s clear pro-lifers do not care about preventing abortions. You are an example of a pro-lifer who doesn’t want to stop teenagers getting pregnant and needing abortions: you just want to promote the idea that they shouldn’t have sex.

As for “Do you have any studies that show this?” - Oh, come off it. You are the one advocating a position where all the evidence is against you - that it’s enough to just tell people not to have sex, and they won’t do it.

Kathy: No, I don’t “know that advocating abstinence education does nothing to prevent teenage pregnancies and abortions.” I’ve heard that claim.

Jes: So while you support “abstinence education”, you have never bothered to go look up any of the research that’s been done on the effects? You see supporting “abstinence education” as an end in itself, and you don’t care whether it prevents teenage pregnancies and abortions?

Kathy, you came on to this thread endeavouring to claim that it just wasn’t true that pro-lifers don’t care about preventing abortions. Yet you yourself have been proving the point in every comment you make: you don’t care if teenagers get pregnant and need to have abortions: you think the only thing that matters is telling them not to have sex. You don’t care enough about this as a strategy for preventing abortions to go look up the effects - yet “abstinence education” has had millions of taxpayer’s money poured into it, in Texas since Bush became governor, nationwide since Bush became President. If it worked, Texas would by now have the lowest teenage pregnancy rate in the US: instead (predictably) it has the highest.

Poor Kathy. She should have known that rather than providing links to studies proving that comprehensive sex education reduces pregnancies, Jes would simply launch into the "pro-lifers just hate teh sex!" mantra. Notice that Jes provides no studies to support its claims, nor gives any other explanation for why Texas might have a higher teen pregnancy rate than some other state (such as the large number of immigrants, legal and illegal). And, unfortunately for Jes, the highest rate of teen births is located in Washington, D.C., not Texas, but maybe that's President Bush's fault, too. The fact is, the number of teen pregnancies has dropped 15 to 53% in all reporting areas. This is during a time when abstinence-only programs have been in effect. It wouldn't be difficult for Jes to provide links to back up its claims, but doing so would take away precious time from ad hominem attacks.

It's good to know some things never change.