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D.C. Statehood

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With the Democrats just barely controlling the House, they passed a bill aimed at granting D.C. statehood. This bill now goes to the Senate where it will, one assumes, be filibustered. This matter raises the question of whether D.C. should become a state. From a pragmatic standpoint, Republicans generally oppose D.C. statehood because making D.C. a state would almost certainly result in two Democratic senators and some Democratic House members. Democrats generally support statehood for these same reasons. Whatever objections the Republicans raise against D.C. statehood must be considered in the context of 1889 and 1890. During this time, the Republican party adopted a pro big business stance that cost them the popular majority. In response, they used their control of Congress to add six new states—a strategy that has paid off to this day. Modern Republicans can, of course, say that they were not involved in that process—they merely continue to benefit from it. They could even condemn the political strategy used back then, since doing so comes at no risk and no cost to them today. To use an analogy, it would be like a family that made its fortune using questionable methods while condemning the same methods today—while keeping a tight grip on their fortune. It would, of course, be a fallacy to conclude that their condemnation must be wrong because they benefited from the same behavior in the past—but one can certainly question the sincerity of the condemnation. But should D.C. become a state? One of the main tactics used by Republicans to argue against D.C. statehood is to claim that the Democrats have bad motives: they want to use the political advantages they would gain to bring about their “socialist utopia.” On the one hand, this can be seen as a Wicked Motivation fallacy. This is a type of ad hominem (or genetic fallacy) in which a claim is rejected because the person or group making the claim is alleged to have a wicked motive. The form looks like. . .

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News source: A Philosopher's Blog

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