Argumentum Ad Hominem…

My two years of Latin many years ago was aided this morning by the help of the World Wide Web where this Latin term is defined as an argument directed at the person rather than at the position they are maintaining.

We are witnessing the ever-increasing use of these kinds of verbal attacks aimed at President Trump by people apparently unable to win the argument he makes on various subjects.  Their only apparent defense for their personal inability is to throw verbal dung at the individual making the case.  Not only utterances against him are used to attempt to defeat his arguments on policy, but venomous tirades aimed at him and various family members, when that seems to fit, at least to them, are their weapons of choice.

This use of the language is tiresome at best and diabolically and intentionally misdirected at worst.  It destroys the debate that often should be taking place since there is apparently only one person ready for the debate…the presenter of the argument.

We need adults in the Congress and yet there are seemingly too many children who are reduced to pouting after making such vitriolic remarks…published/presented only too quickly by the mainstream media as if it were newsworthy.  If you think about this, I’d wager that a person or two might be seen in your mind’s eye as a regular utilizer of this particular ‘gift’.

I know I am biased, but I cannot conjure up the image of any conservatives when I think about the people prone to this feeble argumentative trick.  Those who pop into my mind almost instantly are the ‘trash-talking’ Dems always in quest of a microphone and television camera following some joust that, apparently, they feel like they lost.  There is always the look of utter contempt, the loudness that must be necessary, and even the occasional spittle eruption.  I’ll bet you can see that person right now.

Of course, the mainstream media, as obviously unbiased as it claims to be, appears so accustomed to these rants that there is not even a momentary hesitation on the face of the interviewer when the interviewee goes off.  I frankly hope one day to see the spittle land on the interviewer just to see if there is any reaction at all, or if this is just ‘another day at the office’ having become so routine.

Arguments are healthy in political discussions but they are disruptive and disrespectful when made in the form of a belligerent rant that is nonsensical at best.  There are several people who come quickly to mind that are seemingly solely dependent upon the use of this artful language form in their communications concerning the President and his policies.

These argumentative statements are quite possibly defined by another Latin phrase: de minimis meaning ‘too trivial’ to merit attention.  Such is the life of a liberal.

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