Week of 7/23/2018 – 7/27/2018
Sorry for the late post!
This week we studied fallacies and monsters and their connection. See if you can locate a fallacy in the wild. Where ever you come across it, make sure to summarize and explain how it is a fallacy. See if you can give it a name.
You can also write about anything that reminds you of the class and discussion.
Requirements. 250 word summary and response to the article/post/news/etc; aka text.
Comment below with a link to the text and your summary/response.
In Degree’s commercial about their new dry spray deodorant, an average joe competes against NBA all star Stephen Curry on who is the better player. The point is to see if the dry spray makes you better at basketball. It begins with NBA all star Stephen curry claiming that Degree dry spray is a “game changer”. Curry then ask will it make you better at basketball and proceeds to test that theory. When an average joe puts on the gel deodorant and goes to shoot the ball, he misses. But when Stephen curry uses the dry body spray, scores the three pointer. Curry then turns back to the camera and expresses that indeed the dry spray makes you better at basketball.
This is just too good to pass up. Never have I ever seen an easier fallacy to detect. Even if I did not know a lot about fallacies, after watching this I would know something is fishy. Never mind that Stephen Curry is one of the best NBA shooters of all time, According to Degree, skill doesn’t matter. According to them what really matters is the the brand of deodorant you use because what will determine how good of a basketball player you are. That’s ridiculous. I’m not sure if this is a serious or humor induced advertisement, but this commercial is using correlation and causation fallacy. Because the average when man used the gel deodorant, he missed, therefore the gel makes you worse at basketball. Never mind the training involved. If you use this product, it will make you a better player.
The United States is the only country in the world where guns can be owned by all. The annual shooting in the United States caused 31,000 deaths and 75,000 injuries. It is one of the most developed countries in the world. The people and the two parties have been arguing about the gun control. Since 2011, nearly a hundred proposals for controlling firearms have not been passed in Congress. This time, in the room of the gambling city shooting hotel, a total of more than a dozen long and short guns were found to indicate that the flood of guns had reached the point where it must be controlled and urgently. Whenever a bloody shooting tragedy occurs, many innocent lives are lost, and it is heartbreaking. Recently, a number of US lawmakers have again proposed to conduct in-depth investigations, establish databases and prohibit the sale of offensive weapons.
Those who push for disarmed populations use a logical fallacy when arguing for gun restrictions and gun bans. They only count people who are killed with guns and ignore people who are killed because they were unarmed or disarmed. This logical fallacy is called an irrelevancy argument.
The car has shortened the distance and gives people a comfortable travel experience, but it is also potentially dangerous. The accident rate is even more alarming, and the death rate is unmatched by the shooting. If the vehicle accident is not subject to human control, then the accidental injury of the gun is also true. In Europe, the death toll caused by the use of car crashes and explosions in religion is even more alarming. In July 2016, a truck crash in the French city of Nice caused at least 84 deaths and 202 injuries. But even so, people do not blame the car, it is even more impossible to implement the so-called car ban.
Therefore, we cannot deprive people of the right to use firearms properly because of the shooting. This is like the fact that after a car accident, we have no reason to deprive others of the right to use the car. The free use of firearms is to strengthen our self-defense ability. Guns are legal in order to provide personal freedom, not to facilitate the offender. Guns do not have the attributes of good and evil, but the freedom of guns can help people stop the evil. https://encrypted-tbn0.gstatic.com/images?q=tbn:ANd9GcQoOAR65mNaLEEkI4mblpryTCiEalgAWmSHumRQXWoOc0QR1O-A
Gang violence has been a big problem for decades. It’s a problem that spreads very quickly and is hard to regulate. The lust of fast money, drugs, and plenty of women attracts those hungry young men that feel they have nothing else left to live for. It has also been said that joining a gang gives a young man a sense of purpose and makes them feel like they belong somewhere. On June 20, 2018, a 15 year old boy named Lesandro ‘Junior’ Guzman-Feliz was mistakenly identified by some members of the New York Trinitarios as a rival gang member. He was then dragged out of a liquor store by a group of grown men, and he was repeatedly stabbed and slashed with knives and machetes. The men then ran to vehicles and left Guzman-Feliz for dead. But he got up and ran three blocks to the hospital where he succumbed to his injuries. Guzman-Feliz wanted to be a police officer and was an explorer for the NYPD. 12 gang members have been arrested for this murder, including a high ranking member of the Trinitarios gang. They were arrested on heavy charges of murder, manslaughter, gang assault, conspiracy and criminal possession of a weapon. This sad story has been getting heavy coverage and even some attention and shoutouts from celebrities like Rihanna and Cardi B. I find this story interesting because although it is very sad and it was an accident on the gang members part, crimes that get so much attention like this influences more violence from these growing gangs because they want to get their name on television and out in the world. I feel like these media posts are related to a the straw man fallacy because they inject fear into the public and then try to put a bandage on the situation by saying that they solved the problem by arresting people. Better solutions to progress toward less gang violence isn’t to lock up the youth, but to implement systems in communities that provide unity and a place of belonging to those that feel hopeless or lost. The community has trying their best to come together as one and they are proposing to even start up a scholarship for police cadets in Guzman-Feliz’s name. His father spoke out on national television and said to the Trinitarios that he wants to make sure they all pay for the death of his son.
These are all commercials by DirecTv part of its “Get Rid of Cable” campaign that heavily relies on on the slippery slope fallacy. The slippey slope fallacy is an argument that suggests taking a minor action will lead to major and sometimes ludicrous consequences. Each commercial has different scenarios which ends in an unfavorable situations which in reality should have no direct connection to the starting point. The cause of being caught in that situation, subscribing to cable television instead of DirecTV. For example the man that cannot find anything good on televison and becomes depressed. So he attends motivational seminars that makes him feel a winner. So he goes to Las Vegas in order to win big but loses everything. And because he has nothing to his name he sells his hair to wig store to make up the lost money. The commercial concludes with the the narrator connecting the misfortune to having cable and asserts to get rid of Cable and switch to DirectTV. The commercial is meant to be humorous and ridiculous but behind the ridiculousness lies jabs aimed at cable companies. In that same commercial DirecTV claims that the channel selection on cable are vastly inferior to theirs. Which is what caused the man to become bored and depressed. Or the commercial with the the rebelious daughter that marries an undesirable man and has a child wearing a dog collar that claims that the signal quality of Cable is not as good DirecTv.
There aren’t many places that are as littered with logical fallacies as social media. When people are left alone to freely converse with strangers, logic is often thrown out the window. In fact, there’s an entire page on Twitter dedicated to hunting down fallacies in tweets in order to dissect and classify them. Here are some examples of what I’m talking about.
“Black people make the best athletes. All the best basketball and football players are black.” This is an example of the “Hasty Generalization” fallacy. The speaker takes only one observed fact into account, “Most athletes are black”, and basing his entire statement on it without any supporting evidence or other proofs. If he had perhaps studied the athletes interests, home lives, or educational influence he may have found other facts to help or hinder his statement.
“The announcers on TNT say that Kevin Durant is a waste of a player on Fantasy League so no one pick him up.” This tweet is an example of the “False-Authority Claim” fallacy. The speaker claims that since an announcer on TNT says that Kevin Durant is a bad player on Fantasy League, then he must be. A random announcer on TNT has no real expertise in Fantasy League, but the speaker believes that simply because he or she is someone on T.V they must be credible.
“First home game for girls varsity basketball this Thursday, if you go you’re hot af just saying.” This post is an example of the “Sentimental Appeal” fallacy. This fallacy takes the emotions of the viewer and turns them against them in order to persuade them. Instead of explaining why you should go to said event, she just tell you how “hot” you are if you do.
Animal Humane Society (AHS) is an animal welfare and pet adoption organization. In one of AHS commercial, the video started with a slow harmony music with little kittens speaking in human language. The kittens were using catchphrases’ such as “I want!” “I want a big house,” “I want someone to love,” and “I just want a home” and etc. and then the commercial advertised about pet adoption and giving the animal a loving home. The video ended with “Let’s make a home together.”
The commercial used the pathos fallacy to advertise to their consumers. The point is to get the consumer to feel guilty and adopt a pet. The music makes a big difference of how we view/ our mood towards the video. The music also gives a hint of what we will be watching, a good commercial verse something scary. The kittens were used to distract the consumer attention and makes the consumer wanting to take a kitten home because they are so cute. The slogan used was “I want…” The commercial main focus was to get the consumer to wanting a kitten as a pet or to take a kitten home. When we see something cute, we as a consumer just want to reach out and pet it. Even though we noticed a lot of company uses Pathos fallacy in their advisement, we still fall for it.
I recently stumbled across a theory regarding Marijuana and Hardcore drugs called “Gateway Drug”. The Gateway Drug Theory states that Marijuana is the culprit of heavy drug use. In this article, the article talks about and emphasizes how the Gateway Drug Theory is still being debated till this day. In this article, it talks more about the studies that show what people think of this theory and treatment options that are available. Although, I will focus my main agenda towards the Gateway Drug Theory.
The main argument for the Gateway Drug Theory is simply that “95% of studies show that cocaine users have used marijuana before” and states that the Marijuana is linked to and leads up to heavy drug abuse. This is a fallacy can be easily defined as the Post Hoc. They are saying because most of the users did marijuana before, it was marijuana that leads up to hardcore drugs. This is false and truly an error in reasoning because this can be possibly anything else. In this case, you can also replace marijuana with medicine and pills you have took or even drinking water. It may sound crazy when we say it this way, but the way the Gateway Drug theory is doing exactly that. They are saying that because of something that we did in the past that has a bit of correlation, it is the reason why people turn to heavy drugs. It is shocking and eye opening to see how much of our news sources and media have fallacies. These type of fallacies aren’t as easily to pick up right away, but by critically reading and re-reading, it is easy to see how the this theory has a fallacy.
Have you ever had an informative conversation and the person listening decides to change the subject? Or maybe disregards your question and tries to use excuses? As a matter of fact, it’s a fallacy called red herring. Red herring is used to describe something that misleads or detracts from the actual or otherwise important issue. According to the wikipedia, red herrings are informal fallacies that fall under the category ignoratio elenchi which in latin means “ignorance of the nature of how something is refuted.” I found a short video taken from the movie Alice in Wonderland of the cat using the red herring fallacy. The cat tells Alice that the rabbit went a certain way and Alice gets confused so she asks him again, but the cat disregards her question and starts asking Alice who and what he was talking about. What the cat was doing to Alice was confusing her by asking what he was talking about and tries to change the subject. I believe people use red herring mostly in arguments to attract people without disclosing much information about the deal. They don’t want to talk about the subject being brought up, which is sort of childish and immature. I also see red herring happening a lot in class. Say a student starts talking about a story and asks a question, and the teacher ignores the question and starts talking about something else either because the story was inappropriate or to focus on the lesson which is ephemeral.
Here in the Big Bang Theory Sheldon is talking to his mom on the phone there are a lot of little Faulty Causality here the first is when Sheldon’s mom asks if he’s home because Sheldon was calling her after a trip. Being Sheldon he doesn’t think he’s home till he is inside the door. There is the first little joke about Faulty Causality. The second little bigger joke is when Sheldon tells his mom that the Arctic expedition was a great successful trip and that he must have a Nobel Prize coming in his future, but he goes to fix his mistake by saying, “I’m all but certain there is a Nobel Peace Prize in his future. Actually I shouldn’t say that, I’m interiorly certain.” This is the second time Faulty Causality is uses. Sheldon thinks very highly of himself and feels like he can’t be beat and is the best. The big joke about the Faulty Causality comes in the last couple minutes when Sheldon’s mom asked if he could feel her church group praying for his safe return from the expedition and he says, “No mother I could not feel your church group praying for my safely. The fact that I’m home did not prove that it worked. That is Post Hoc Ergo Propter Hoc.” Which then were are to assume his mother takes offense to Sheldon using the Latin term for faulty causality. Because he responds by saying he’s not being a smart ass to his mother in an eskimo language.
In this commercial, a car seller tries to convince kids which car their parents should buy. There is a caption saying that the kids are not actors; it is to demonstrate true opinions from them. He persuades them by saying that possibly their parents would later on give them the car. Only two options to buy from. It is actually a choice between two competitors, Ford and Chevrolet. Also, one can note that the Chevrolet’s car is facing towards the customers, whereas the other car is slightly farther and facing sideways. The colors of the cars could have contributed as well, red is often an appealing color than grey. Leaving aside persuasive elements, it is important to discuss the argument of the commercial. Thus, I found that the argument results fallacious when the seller only provides positive features of the red Silverado and none of the other truck. Implying that Chevrolet’s car is of best trucks on the road. This fits into the “Stacking the Deck” and “Non-Sequitur” fallacies. The first fallacy is when only one side of the story— the one in their favor is told. Like the description of the seller. And the second fallacy, appears in the commercial when the seller confidently finishes stating the features of the Chevrolet truck by saying “which means that Ford F-150s are not, Which one would you choose?” Here the claims do not connect logically. It is like saying the ‘only right and obvious option’ is the Chevrolet. However, not because one car is great means that the other one is not. There is no correlation with that fact.
Popular kids’ cartoons are filled with just as many fallacies as an advertisement. In the episode, SpongeBob and Patrick are interested in the world of entrepreneurs, to live the lavish lifestyle of riches and sophistication. Their admiration comes from a magazine that portrays a man (fish) to be the most knowledgeable about extravagant living, which associates to irrelevant appeal to authority fallacy. The assumption is because the man is photographed in the magazine, he automatically knows anything and everything about being rich. The fallacy influences SpongeBob and Patrick into changing their lifestyles and desiring higher income.
An example of non sequitur fallacy is when Patrick projects the lie that if you purchase their chocolate, rub it on your skin and you’ll live forever. There is no correlation between chocolate and life span, causing Patrick to make a huge generalization in order to make the sale. After this scene, multiple messages are used in order to make a sale, such as “it’ll make you smarter”, “it’ll keep you from getting uglier”, etc. Another example is guilt by association. The seller and the buyer used a story of their injuries to appeal to their emotions in order to manipulate a sale. Because of the episode being all out salesmanship, it is filled with multiple fallacies for a children’s audience in order to teach the lessons of believing into arguments or discussion based upon multiple ways of reasoning.
For this week’s journal I decided to write on the article “Jim Holbrook Bids Farwell to Crafton”. The article talks about how after 40 years of teaching Emergency Medical Services Jim Holbrook retired. The article interview Jim and he talked about how he never knew he wanted to teach but was approached by Crafton’s first program director to Precept and thought he would try it. This article stands out to me because as the article continues, as Jim reflected on his time at Crafton he said of the students “my task has always been as an emissary of peace and help a student get out of whatever bias they have, as an EMS, whatever family you go to is going to have a different heritage, a different religion a different practice, a whole bunch of difference than you have, But as long as the person comes first who cares about the rest of the stuff”. Not only did I get my E.M.T. and had Dr. Holbrook as a skills instructor but I also worked under him. His quote makes me think of who we view as monsters. Those people who are different usually get outraised or called a monster. I see this tying into cause and effect as well. Thanks to a great EMS program hugely in part to the humble Jim Holbrook me along with countless other had the tools to go into the field also known as life and treat patients objectively like they should be treated.
The article details the consequences of Xenophobia in the united states, and to be specific the article elaborates over consequences of a Xenophobic approach to foreign workers in the United States. The article discusses the buy American and hire American policy in business and explains that foreign workers have helped our economy and improve the industrious ways found in the united states. Previously, highly skilled workers from countries outside the US saw the opportunity to work in the united states to be very attractive, however this is not the case in recent times. Policies that are directed towards hiring less foreign workers and to seek out citizens of the United states to fill positions that require skilled workers. Previously, attitudes regarding foreign workers in the United States were negative mostly towards workers from countries besides the United states that filled positions in fields such as agriculture and other jobs that require massive amounts of low paid foreign workers. Why am I writing about this? Well, a common belief in the United States is that foreign workers hurt the Economy of the United States. This argument is a hasty generalization fallacy. We make monsters out of foreign workers because it is the easiest answer to a problem such as distribution of labor in the United States. The hasty Generalization fallacy is when a conclusion or argument is made without unbiased evidence to support it. Often hasty generalizations are made to offer a simple solution to a complex issue that can be represented in many ways, and the effort is no longer to support the claim or conclusion made, but to defend the claim from scrutiny.
For this week’s journal, I used an Axe advertisement that represented the “Slippery Slope” logical fallacy. Pretty much every Axe commercial ever is guilty of this fallacy, but I chose this one because it was extra weird and honestly a little terrifying. The commercial is advertising Axe’s new Dark Temptation scented products. It claims they are as “irresistible as chocolate”. In this ad, we see a boy spray himself with the product and transform into a chocolate man. For the remainder of the commercial, women are flocking to him: throwing themselves at him, staring at him, and even tasting him. This commercial is a great example of the Slippery Slope fallacy because it is claiming that if you use this new body spray, you will get all of the ladies. Using this spray means getting ridiculous amounts of attention from females, and becoming an irresistible stud, essentially. In reality, using this spray will not lead to this outcome- or even anything similar. Some men just can’t be helped, let’s be real. It is a popular advertising tactic, however, because boys at an impressionable age (prepubescent, middle-highschoolers) will look at this and want the product immediately. Unfortunately for them, they’re probably going to need a lot more help than a body spray can provide…
In the article,” I was burned over 90 percent of my body and kept asking ‘why me’ then this happened,” John O’Leary speaks about his experience after being burned. When John was nine years old he was tried splashing gas on a burning piece of cardboard and the fumes sparked an explosion and he was burned on 100% of his body. His community was very supportive in his recovery and when he came home from the hospital there was cars and firetrucks lining his street. He had received support from the president and the pope in Rome after his accident. Between everything John had to juggle like physical therapy and bandage changes, he always had the question of ‘why me’ in the back of his mind. Why did i get burned? Why did i live? Why me? One night his father finally said to him after months of constantly asking ‘why me,’ he said, “John darn it, why not you? This terrible thing has happened. Your life will never be the same and neither will any of ours. But you are still here, you still have your life. What matters now is not what happened, but what you chose to do with it.” A lot of people tend to ask why me over the simplest things like a flat tire or spilling coffee on their shirt. John asked this question for a while after burning his entire body, and when his father told him why not you he stopped complaining and made it motivate him to help people. In relation to our class, people like to blame serial killer behavior on their bad upbringing. If these people only asked themselves ‘why me’ and took it another route instead of negative, bad things could have been avoided. It is all about how we perceive things and do with what we’ve got no matter what the situation.
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