Wednesday, February 10, 2010

Agreeing to Disagree on Facts

Coming to us from the great state of Utah, a stunning example of just how frustrating this idea that 'balance = accurate' can be for those of us who try to live in the reality based world. The state legislators were voting on a bill that I can only image was one of those "we can't outlaw abortion but we can make it as hard on the women as possible" kind of bills.

A bill that would give a woman seeking an abortion the option to first view her ultrasound passed the Utah House on Friday.

Before HB200 cleared the chamber in a 53-15 vote, Minority Leader David Litvack, D-Salt Lake City, unsuccessfully attempted to amend the bill to delete language he believed to be flat-out false, referring to viewing the heartbeat of a fetus at three weeks.

"It is not medically accurate," Litvack said. "It's not possible. It does not exist."

Litvack read from a physician's e-mail that said you could expect to see embryonic cardiac activity at about six weeks from the woman's last period.

Rep. Carl Wimmer, the bill's sponsor, disputed Litvack's claim.

"There are arguments on both sides of the issue," Wimmer, R-Herriman, said.

There are arguments on both sides of the issue? No. There aren't. When it comes to facts, there are not two equally valid sides. One side is right, one is wrong. It's like saying, "well, you say the world isn't the center of the universe, but there are arguments on both sides of the issue."

Our politics are so divided we can no longer agree on facts.

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