Wednesday, March 28, 2018

Logical Fallacies- Strawman- If I only had an argument

Many people do not know what logical fallacies are. They are examples of "reaching" as many people call it. People will form an argument and think it is valid, but there is a gaping hole. This will explain what the types of holes are.

The first fallacy we will visit is the Strawman fallacy. This one is currently running rampant on social media. The strawman argument is taking an argument, stripping it to the base form, then twisting it to an extreme. We will visit both sides of the gun control fight with this one.

Scenario 1:
Person A: We need to restrict the sale of firearms, and create stronger background checks.

Person B: Why do you hate America? You just want to take my guns and let the bad guys kill us all.

Scenario 2:
Person B: I don't feel that gun restrictions are the answer.

Person A: Why do you want to make guns available to everyone? No one will be safe. Everyone will just open fire wherever they go.

Now, these are not the actual arguments the individuals are making, but they are the twists that people place upon the arguments.

What person A is likely saying is that we need to try to regulate what is available and to whom. We know that there will be some criminals who get weapons anyway, but we may be able to stop some people or at least delay them. Sometimes delaying the procurement of weapons will buy time to remove the threat.

What person B is likely saying is that he or she feels vulnerable without the means to defend him or herself with a firearm. He doesn't want to willy nilly open fire. Most gun owners do not want to fire their weapons for defense ever. They only want to feel secure.

The scarecrow was made of straw. There was nothing significant to his body. It easily falls apart. Let's avoid using the strawman argument. Try to stop and listen when it feels that the argument is extreme. Unless the other person actually creates an argument that is that extreme, don't assume that is what they mean.

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