The Tu Quoque Fallacy is All the Party of Trump Has Left

The Tu Quoque Fallacy is All the Party of Trump Has Left June 14, 2016

A reader writes regarding Fr. West’s calumny:

All due respect, sir, but do you not commit the same error as he does by saying that your accuser supports Planned Parenthood, torture, abortion, etc. because his candidate does? In my opinion, you should remove those statements from this column to make yourself unworthy of any blame in this.

No. I don’t. Because our positions are assymetrical. Trump is, very obviously, the greater evil. He supports all the evils Hillary does and then some. My sole reason for saying it is legitimate to vote for her is to lessen evil and I have *facts* on my side to show that this is case. The “prolife” Trumpkin’s sole reason for backing Trump is that he is a Republican and Republicans are mystically less evil than Democrats Because Abortion (even though Trump’s views of abortion are identical with Hillary’s.) Because of this I am free to reject and denounce every evil thing Hillary supports–and I have done so repeatedly.

The paradox of the “prolife” Trumpkin’s position is that he must, to support this wicked man, remain silent about or defend every evil thing Trump says and does. This is exactly what Fr. West and countless other Trumpkins have done and will keep doing. Beyond a vague “he’s a flawed candidate”, Fr. West has been mum about Trump’s many outrages or has gone to bat for him, posting standard Muslim-hate boilerplate. And, of course, he has lied that I support Planned Parenthood when he knows perfectly well I have denounced PP times without number.

When a Trumpkin begins to denounce Trump’s evils as I have denounced Hillary’s then, there will be parity. The problem is, if he does that consistently, there will be nothing left about Trump to support, since he supports every evil Hillary does, and several she does not.

That is the Faustian Bargain that rejecting the Church’s Consistent Life Ethic and embracing the Five Non-Negotiables *always* creates under the lash of Movement Conservative demagoguery. You start with telling yourself that these are the most important issues in American political life (a prima facie reasonable assumption). But you invariably end by saying that these are the only things that matter and that you must support any candidate, no matter how transparently a liar, who occasionally makes a noise about the unborn while his real core “non-negotiables” are plainly devoted to (in Trump’s case) racism, misogyny, Mammon-worship, bellicose stupidity, and above all, Donald Trump. And so you end up spending all your time and energy dancing to his tune, not he to yours. You end up having to defend him when he advocates evil, and somehow never have any time to spare for your putative core non-negotiable–except to use the unborn as human shields for fighting the Church whenever it crosses the GOP candidate’s agenda. “Who cares if a few people get tortured! The real torture is abortion! The death penalty is not intrinsically immoral like abortion, so let’s kill as many as we can. And if 4% of them are innocent, well, know you are about to die helps you repent your sins. Murdering wives and children of suspected terrorists? Well, they should have thought of that before they became terrorists! The real terrorist is the abortionist! Who cares about a living wage for poor people. All that nonsense about economic pressure to abort is a waste of time. If people don’t trust God and kill their child out of fear of poverty, that’s not my problem. I gave a nickel to the Crisis Pregnancy Center but I’m not buying this socialist junk Francis is pedalling about the duty of employers to pay a living wage. The only thing that matters is overturning Roe, which will happen Real Soon Now if only we elect a man who says women should be treated ‘like shit’.”

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