Jay Tea over at “Wizbang!” isn’t liking the trend he’s seeing wherein discussion is stifled because of who’s making a point. His most recent case in point is Michael J. Fox on embryonic stem cell research. When Fox makes the point, then arguing against it makes it sound like you don’t want to cure him…that guy, right there on the TV.

Another example is Cindy Sheehan, whom the press and the Left (but I repeat myself) continue to hold up as a representative war mom, even though there are plenty of other parents of dead soldiers that still support the war. No one else is covered on the news with nearly the same level of publicity when they speak out because Mother Sheehan is the last word, not because of her point, but because of who she is. End of discussion. One of the post’s commenters notes that only war moms who were critical of the war were said to have “moral authority”, with the others had other, not so nice names given to them.

Jay gives some great examples in the other direction, such that if we were to get rid of anything conceived by someone who’s actions we found repugnant, we’d have to toss out all our Volkswagon Beetles and computer transistors. His point is that ideas should stand on their own merits, no rely on or be buttressed by who agrees with them.

I’m not sure I’m quite the absolutist as Jay is about this. I do think that people with certain life experiences can give us more insight. But the notoriety or the sympathy of a person should not stop the discussion.

Filed under: Culture

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