There have been many tragic events during the course of 2012 and the start of 2013 that have sparked many controversial debates. One can conclude from the Sandy Hook massacre in Newtown Connecticut to the marathon bombing in Boston that something must be done, but what exactly must be done is the topic of debate amongst every media outlet known to man. Through the course of this whole gun control and immigration debate, there have been many logical fallacies used by many politicians and people in general to persuade the populace into accepting their position. It is through values-based and reasoning-based fallacies that these news pundits are able to push their political and or personal agenda.
The most common logical fallacy in most of these arguments used are generalizations. The argument that I’ve heard most, frequently, is the hasty generalization that our society and legal system is broken, due to a handful of school shootings. Although, the events that took place in Newtown Connecticut are extremely tragic, it does not provide enough data to produce a strong statistical argument like many believe it does. Another “perfect” solution to this “gun violence epidemic” that I’ve heard from the proponents of gun restriction is to completely abolish the use of guns in our society, which, in turn, sparks another fallacious response-the idea that one regulation would lead to many other regulations. This type of reasoning or fallacy is known as a “slippery slope,” because it is saying that the acceptance of one step or action will cause a chain of events that cannot be stopped and whose end result is obviously undesirable. Both sides of the argument also love to throw statistics and use random polls to prove the points that they are trying to make, which leads to them eventually assuming that one thing obviously leads to another, when in fact, virtually every violent social issue has many factors or layers that contribute to the end result.
It is through the use of the internet, newspapers and television that people like Bill O’Reilly and Bill Maher are able to push their political and personal agenda by using these various logical fallacies. We, as the consumers of these products, unknowingly develop these same habits whenever we write or argue. The truth is, we all, at some point, fall into fallacious arguments. This very essay contains these very flaw as well. Logical fallacies are used every day even in the products we purchase and utilize. It is up to you to decide whether you buy an expensive fragrance only because the person in the commercial is guaranteed desired attention or not.