Fallacies and Their Meanings
Critical thinking and decision making are learned traits. When one makes decisions, whether a small decision, such as choosing which clothes to wear or whether a more significant decision, such as solving an issue at work or settling a dispute, it is important to learn that tools are available to help the "mind" make decisions. One such tool that is useful, is learning how to identify and work with fallacies. In order to understand how to use fallacies, it is important to understand what a fallacy is. According to Merriam-Webster Dictionary on line, the definitions of fallacy are; "obsolete; guile, trickery; deceptive appearance; deception; a false or mistaken idea; erroneous character; an often plausible argument using false or invalid inference". A person could conclude that when decisions are made, fallacies should not be the only deciding factor. Fallacies can be formal and informal. The validity of an argument is considered the function of the form of an argument. A deductive argument is a formal fallacy and an informal fallacy is invalid or weak in reasoning. Aristotle categorized fallacies by relevance, fallacies that involved causal reasoning and fallacies that result from ambiguities. (Wikipedia). Eight main fallacies that one should be aware of and learn about are given in the resource section for students of the University of Phoenix. This Master List of Logical Fallacies include the following: ad hominem or attacking the person; ad ignorantium or appeal to ignorance; ad verecuniam or appeal to authority; affirming the consequent; amphiboly; appeal to emotion; argument from analogy or false analogy and begging the question. The three fallacies that will be discussed in this paper are the ad ignorantium-appeal to ignorance; ad verecuniam or appeal to authority and affirming the consequent. Upon a brief discussion of each of these fallacies, an example will be given to explain how the use of the fallacy is...
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