The slippery slope is a common logical fallacy (and a variant on the argument from adverse consequences) that asks for a prohibition or curtailment on something based on a cascading series of undesired results, e.g. former Senator Rick Santorum's belief that the US Supreme Court's decision on Lawrence v. Texas would eventually lead to the legalization of "man-on-dog" sex, among other forms of sexual activity generally considered repulsive or obscene. It is also a common argument amongst opponents of drug or alcohol use, based on the idea that simply getting drunk or high once (or even just experiencing a little of the substance in question) inevitably leads to a raging addiction and a failed life.
While the slippery slope may in fact exist, usually the argument is put forth while ignoring possible mitigating factors (such as informed consent for sex partners in the Santorum example), thus making it generally a somewhat-too-serious form of reductio ad absurdum.
Parade of the Imaginary Horribles
The parade of the imaginary horribles is the list of off-the-wall worst-case scenarios that opponents claim will occur after the legalization or acceptance of a prohibited activity. (I.e., Santorum's "man-on-dog sex" statement listed above.) These scenarios say more about the psyches of the people who devise them than about the proponents for change.
This term is accredited to former U.S. Supreme Court Justice William O. Douglas.
- ↑ A viewpoint on why something like this may not be so bad can be found Here. WARNING: Fowl language.
- ↑ As if sex itself isn't obscene on its own, by those people's standards.
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