The Fallacy Fallacy

fallacy fallacy - wrong way

Presuming that because a claim has been poorly argued, or a fallacy has been made, that it is necessarily wrong.

It’s important to avoid dismissing the conclusion someone has presented simply because their argument is formally or informally invalid.

Eating vegetables because nearly everyone does it is a bandwagon fallacy! Your use of fallacies proves eating bacon covered butter is better than vegetables.

Well, no, it doesn’t prove anything besides poor reasoning skills. There are many reasons to eat vegetables and many reasons to avoid bacon covered butter. Your position is not strengthened by the use of a fallacy by your opponent, it only weakens their argument, not the truth value of their conclusion.

Try not to spend too much time focusing on the fallacies and, instead, pay attention to the larger conclusion, if there is one. Just because someone can’t effectively prove their case, doesn’t necessarily make them wrong. Try and keep that in mind.

And remember, positive claims require positive evidence. Otherwise, there is no reason to believe they are true, whether it’s alien abductions, big foot, magical overlords or the chair you’re sitting in.

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