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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.

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Zali Segal

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Zali Segal


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Wed, Nov 21, 2018 - 05:16 PM

Should a men not voice an opinion on women's issues?

I had a conversation with a women about feminism. She said my opinions are irrelevant because "When I see a man pregnant then he can give his opinions on birth control and abortion,. Then I know he walked in a women's shoes." What's the fallacy in this argument?



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Abdulazeez Alabbasi

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Abdulazeez Alabbasi


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Print Wed, Nov 21, 2018 - 05:27 PM
Identity fallacy. It's when the argument is dismissed based on the arguer's social class, race, gender, etc:
https://www.logicallyfallacious.com/tools/lp/Bo/LogicalFallacies/234/Identity-Fallacy
That kind of logic can be taken to absurd conclusions. Should one be a dog to argue for animal rights? A cow to argue that killing animals for food is bad or acceptable? a moral philosopher or bioethicist with credentials and who is trained in their field has a far higher probability of underatanding gender-related and female-related ethical issues than a feminazi whose only credential is "knowing what it's like to be a woman."
Here's an interesting article by Dr. Bo about common fallacies in the social justice movement:
https://www.logicallyfallacious.com/tools/bg/Bo/LogicalFallacies/UqIFDDHA/Top-Five-Logical-Fallacies-in-the-Social-Justice-Movement


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Alan

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Alan


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Print Thu, Nov 22, 2018 - 06:22 AM
Looks like a form of the appeal to authority argument


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Rich McMahon
Wednesday, November 21, 2018 - 09:05:09 PM
@Abdulazeez Alabbasi: Well, not quite. A version of this question actually came up two years ago. Here is my reply/analysis back then, which I believe to remain relevant and on point:

"While no context is provided for this assertion it might be insightful to riff on it a bit, i.e., adding a similar assertion and some hypothetical context, to see whether the fallacy continues to exist:

1."If you don't have a uterus (i.e., a woman) your opinion on abortion is irrelevant."

Compare this to:

2. “If you aren’t a Person of Color (e.g., African American) your opinion on racial discrimination in the U.S. is irrelevant.”

Are these statements equivalent, and equally fallacious?

Possible embedded assumptions for each:

1.If you aren’t a woman you can’t possibly comprehend the pain of childbirth, therefore your opinion on abortion is irrelevant.
2. If you are not e.g., African American, you cannot possibly have experienced racial discrimination, and therefore cannot understand it. Thus, your opinion on it is irrelevant.

In #1 it is accepted that only women can experience the risk of childbirth and its accompanying pain. The question becomes whether this rises to a level sufficient to overwhelmingly surmount other issues, e.g., per Bo, rights of the father, also possibly the life of the unborn child during the third trimester. If the answer is ‘yes’ it would seem that the default ‘male’ opinion does become largely irrelevant (and the fallacy vanishes.)

#2 holds there is a tacit assumption that other forms of personal discrimination (e.g., obesity, Gay, Jewish, etc. etc.) non-Blacks may have experienced in life, perhaps even combined with a strong capability for empathy, fall short of requisite A posteriori knowledge of racial discrimination, thus opinions on it are irrelevant. (The view reflecting a singular discriminatory experience has been voiced selectively by African Americans at different times toward both Jews and Gays claiming discriminatory camaraderie.) My view is that while the selective degree of empathy for and understanding of racial discrimination by e.g., non-Blacks may asymptotically approach that of African Americans having lived it, it cannot fully reach their A posteriori depth. However, this delta is not sufficient to render opinions on it irrelevant, thus the fallacy remains."

So, what do you think?







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Abdulazeez Alabbasi
Wednesday, November 21, 2018 - 11:18:37 PM
The argument doesn't become fallacious only if you grant the rather bizarre proposed implication/premise that "experiencing childbirth and its pain takes precedence over all other issues related to abortion like one's medical knowledge about it, one's ability to apply moral reasoning to it, the rights of the father to have a saying in it, and the life of the unborn baby," which is a premise I don't find reasonable at all to accept. Do infertile women also not get to have a relevant opinion on abortion because they can't experience childbirth? If a man states that he's pro-choice because he believes women have the right to do what they please with their bodies, is his opinion also not relevant? Abortion is a multifaceted topic that is open to logical scrutiny, the application of moral reasoning, and certainly the validity of opinions from both genders and does not solely depend on one's capacity to experience the pain and risks of labor. If someone who never gave birth or lacks the capacity to give birth says "I don't really think giving birth is all that painful," then in that case it becomes reasonable to invoke the person's lack of capability to experience childbirth since this specific opinion suggests emotional detachment due to not having the capacity to experience the pain of going through labor.

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Rich McMahon
Thursday, November 22, 2018 - 12:12:55 PM
@Abdulazeez Alabbasi:
As I stated:

"....it is accepted that only women can experience the risk of childbirth and its accompanying pain. The question becomes whether this rises to a level sufficient to overwhelmingly surmount other issues, e.g.,.....rights of the father, also possibly the life of the unborn child during the third trimester."

This then becomes highly subjective. Per above, I fully recognize there are additional factors; it becomes a matter of how you weight them, i.e., a purely subjective proposition.

Also, you asked:

" Do infertile women also not get to have a relevant opinion on abortion because they can't experience childbirth?"

The answer is: No, they do not, if (and only if) they make the argument that MEN are unqualified to render opinions on abortion, specifically due to inability to experience pain of childbirth.

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