Accused of a fallacy? Suspect a fallacy? Ask Dr. Bo and the community!

Quickly register to comment, ask and respond to questions, and get FREE access to our passive online course on cognitive biases!
Register!

one moment please...


Welcome! This is the place to ask the community of experts and other fallacyophites (I made up that word) if someone has a committed a fallacy or not. This is a great way to settle a dispute! This is also the home of the "Mastering Logical Fallacies" student support.


Dr. Bo's Criteria for Logical Fallacies:

  1. It must be an error in reasoning not a factual error.
  2. It must be commonly applied to an argument either in the form of the argument or in the interpretation of the argument.
  3. It must be deceptive in that it often fools the average adult.

Therefore, we will define a logical fallacy as a concept within argumentation that commonly leads to an error in reasoning due to the deceptive nature of its presentation. Logical fallacies can comprise fallacious arguments that contain one or more non-factual errors in their form or deceptive arguments that often lead to fallacious reasoning in their evaluation.

Contact Form



Send me a copy of this message
Send Message sending message...

Q&A Home Question

0

votes

image loading...
Mona Schafer

Eager Newbie

image loading...

Mona Schafer


Eager Newbie

About Mona Schafer

Sorry, this user has not created a bio yet.
Mon, Nov 26, 2018 - 12:20 PM

Should we allow assisted suicide?

My Prof. assigned this as a topic for term paper. I am having a problem even to begin. Breaking down the question it seems to me misleading. Assisted suicide assumes suicide, that being immoral, leading one to have to answer no? Am I going the right direction with what I believe the Prof really wants as an answer. It is an advanced Philosophy class. Begging the question?



Quick Comment On This Question (no login required):
Your comment below will be anonymously sent to the question owner, it will not be posted, and you will not get a response.

Send Comment sending comment...

4 Answers

0

votes

image loading...
jorge

Eager Newbie

image loading...

jorge


Eager Newbie

About jorge

Sorry, this user has not created a bio yet.
Print Mon, Nov 26, 2018 - 02:57 PM
I remember from my intro to ethics class the principle of doing and allowing. Committing suicide is an act done on oneself but assisted suicide is an act done by someone else with the same goal. My guess is that the question wants you to think about circumstances that makes us say that suicide might not be immoral. Or circumstances where assisted suicide is moral. If I say that suicide is wrong because taking one's life is wrong, then what makes assisted suicide any different? After all, pushing the fat man or pulling the lever sounds like not that different [1].

If we think of scenarios where assisted suicide might be permissible, or even the right thing, we might come up with examples like people with incurable diseases and under intense suffering. We can make a case that if this is permissible, then if someone is under intense suffering due to an incurable disease and has no one around, then suicide is permissible (no distinction between doing and allowing). On the other hand, if someone takes their own life because they lost in a tournament of some kind, then if we say that this is forbidden, then asking someone to assist on the suicide sounds more like murder.

In all, I think that we can be generous and say that the question, is assisted suicide wrong? is broad on purpose so that we can expand on its nuances.

[1] https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Trolley_problem


Quick Comment On This Answer (no login required):
Your comment below will be anonymously sent to the answer owner, it will not be posted, and you will not get a response.

Send Comment sending comment...

1

votes

image loading...
Bo Bennett, PhD
Author of Logically Fallacious

Moderator

image loading...

Bo Bennett, PhD

Author of Logically Fallacious

Moderator

About Bo Bennett, PhD

Bo's personal motto is "Expose an irrational belief, keep a person rational for a day. Expose irrational thinking, keep a person rational for a lifetime."  Much of his charitable work is in the area of education—not teaching people what to think, but how to think.  His projects include his book, The Concept: A Critical and Honest Look at God and Religion, and Logically Fallacious, the most comprehensive collection of logical fallacies.  Bo's personal blog is called Relationship With Reason, where he writes about several topics related to critical thinking.  His secular (humanistic) philosophy is detailed at PositiveHumanism.com.
Bo is currently the producer and host of The Humanist Hour, the official broadcast of the American Humanist Association, where he can be heard weekly discussing a variety of humanistic issued, mostly related to science, psychology, philosophy, and critical thinking.

Full bio can be found at http://www.bobennett.com
Print Mon, Nov 26, 2018 - 12:35 PM
As of now, "assisted suicide" is the official term. The immoral connotation of the term is a different question, perhaps one you can address in the paper. I know proponents prefer "death with dignity." But it is suicide. No real fallacy here because it is outside the context of an argument. You can discuss the concept of loaded language - see my article on this at https://www.thedrboshow.com/tools/bg/Bo/TheDrBoShow/l3EEXMbQ/Don-t-Be-Manipulated-by-Loaded-Language .
Bo Bennett, PhD
Social Scientist, Business Consultant
Coaching / Consulting > https://tinyurl.com/coachingbybo
About My Businesses > http://www.archieboy.com
About Me > http://www.bobennett.com
Books I’ve Written > https://tinyurl.com/bosbooks
Courses I Teach > https://tinyurl.com/boscourses
Podcasts I Host > https://tinyurl.com/bospodcasts


Quick Comment On This Answer (no login required):
Your comment below will be anonymously sent to the answer owner, it will not be posted, and you will not get a response.

Send Comment sending comment...

0

votes

image loading...
Michael Chase Walker
Screenwriter, producer, mythoclast

Seasoned Vet

image loading...

Michael Chase Walker

Screenwriter, producer, mythoclast

Seasoned Vet

About Michael Chase Walker

Michael Chase Walker is an actor, author, screenwriter, producer, and a former adjunct lecturer for the College of Santa Fe Moving Images Department, and Dreamworks Animation. His first motion picture was the animated classic, The Last Unicorn.
Michael was an in-house television writer for the hit television series: He-Man, She-Ra, Voltron, and V, the Series. In 1985, he was appointed Director of Children's programs for CBS Entertainment where he conceived, shaped and supervised the entire 1985 Saturday Morning line-up: Wildfire, Pee Wee's Playhouse, Galaxy High School, Teen Wolf, and over 10
Print Mon, Nov 26, 2018 - 01:41 PM
In fact there are three areas that need to be examined in this question: Should we allow, Assisted, and finally, Suicide.The first part needs to be given a context. If the we allow is within a perilous Seal Team Six mission against overwhelming odds of survival or being captured it could become a honor pact among the team members. At that point the question takes on a whole new meaning than if we are simply positing it as a legal or social matter. So, that would need to be cleared up first.

I don't find any moral bias against suicide in the question. That seems to be your bias, or assumed belief. So we would probably need to have more information about whose morality we're talking about here. Judaism considers the mass suicide at Masada to be a sacred act. In fact, the question doesn't imply anything immoral about the act of suicide itself. The question is about the ethics of 'assisted suicide' which is a separate issue than suicide. It's possible that suicide is morally and ethically sanctioned, while assisted suicide is not only immoral, but homicide. Lest you think this is semantics, there is a legendary class taught at Harvard (See Scott Turow's L101) precisely on the myriad legalities and ethics of improbable situations. You might also look at Paul Thomas Anderson's film Magnolia that opens with different mind-bending situations with extremely unconventional answers.

So, there are no fallacies within the question itself, but your assumption of morality may be a bias or projection on your part that's not in the question itself.


Quick Comment On This Answer (no login required):
Your comment below will be anonymously sent to the answer owner, it will not be posted, and you will not get a response.

Send Comment sending comment...

0

votes

image loading...
Abdulazeez Alabbasi

Seasoned Vet

image loading...

Abdulazeez Alabbasi


Seasoned Vet

About Abdulazeez Alabbasi

Sorry, this user has not created a bio yet.
Print Mon, Nov 26, 2018 - 02:31 PM
My personal answer to that question is yes, assisted suicide can be the best solution to many conditions, e.g. terminal illnesses associated with immense physical and psychological pain. As for your question, there are no logical fallacies, but I'd advise you to beware cognitive biases when doing your paper to avoid irrational content in the paper and biased research when looking for info for the paper.


Quick Comment On This Answer (no login required):
Your comment below will be anonymously sent to the answer owner, it will not be posted, and you will not get a response.

Send Comment sending comment...

Registered User Comments

Mona Schafer
Monday, November 26, 2018 - 06:24:19 PM
@Bo Bennett, PhD: What about the States where it is legal, they have incorporated value neutral terminology, some not allowing the term suicide at all, have officially changed term to assisted aid, physician assisted aid or death with dignity. Does this affect the q's.

login to reply
2 replies
0 votes
 
Reply To Comment
working...
 

Bo Bennett, PhD
moderator
Monday, November 26, 2018 - 07:13:57 PM
I don't think so. If your professor was using a politically incorrect or outdated label, then I would say there is some poisoning of the well going on or perhaps simple manipulation through loaded language. As far as I know, "assisted suicide" is still the dominant label even. Also, as someone wrote above, immorality is not something that I would think is commonly associated with suicide... perhaps only in a theistic worldview. In social science, it is more associated with mental health issues where the person committing suicide is the victim.

login to reply
 
1 votes
 
Reply To Comment
working...
 

Jim Tarsi
Tuesday, November 27, 2018 - 12:04:59 PM
@Bo Bennett, PhD: You may already know this, but Catholics view suicide as a mortal sin. I don't believe that changes any fallacies surrounding the argument.

login to reply
 
0 votes
 
Reply To Comment
working...



About Archieboy Holdings, LLC. Privacy Policy Other Books Written by Bo
 Website Software Copyright 2018, Archieboy Holdings, LLC.