Refraction (Bent Thinking) # 8

Intentional Obfuscation of Terms:  Intentionally denying the possibility of defining terms or consciously using unclear, misleading, or biased definitions. Refutation: Any term can be defined and has a definition if it has usage within the language of that culture, so it is simply incorrect to say that we cannot define a term. What is more likely that case is that the parties cannot come up with a definition with which they both agree. Example:  There is no universally accepted definition of the word “life” so we cannot discuss this notion in our debate on abortion.  Side Note: I have had many student position papers make the claim that abortion is murder. Without weighing in on the debate, I always point out to them that the “common” definition for murder requires that for an act to be considered murder, it has to be illegal. Therefore, It would be incorrect to call abortion murder within any jurisdiction that has legalized it.  You can argue that it should be murder, but not that it is murder.

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