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Appeal to Popularity

Varrack
Posts: 2,645
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6/13/2015 7:59:04 PM
Posted: 2 years ago
There have been a lot of arguments I've seen that attempt to appeal to popular opinion in order to create some kind of contention. Here's the fallacy:

1. Most people approve of X.
2. Therefore X is true

Although this is illogical, there have been other popular-related arguments that try to edge around this and may or may not qualify as fallacious. Some examples I'm thinking of:

1. "There is a majority consensus that presidential term limits should exist, and keeping them in place would be more satisfying to the people, thus they should exist"
2. "Legalizing X is what most people want, so to legalize it is to represent democracy properly"
3. "More people will suffer for not having X legalized because they really want it to be, and if it is legal it will appease their desires"

For the first one, is citizen satisfaction a good argument? Can it be used to argue for the continued existence of X?

For the second one, if I am arguing that X should not be legalized, but my opponent argues that most people want it to be, how do I respond to that? I can't disprove the fact that it is popular opinion, but I'm hesitant to call them out for committing an ad populum, since that may not be what the fallacy really entails. I think it is somehow wrong though.

I could say that the legalization of X may be the popular opinion but it's not necessarily in the best interest of people despite their own convictions. If it really is an argument then it can't be a very strong one, because if I have evidence that X is bad it should sound enough to negate popular convictions.

Any input?
UtherPenguin
Posts: 4,087
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6/13/2015 8:09:36 PM
Posted: 2 years ago
You seem to know quite a bit about fallacies. Wanna join the Fallacy Police?
I bear witness that there is no God but Allah and that Muhammad (peace and blessing be upon him) is his messenger.
-GreyParrot
Varrack
Posts: 2,645
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6/13/2015 8:17:40 PM
Posted: 2 years ago
At 6/13/2015 8:09:36 PM, UtherPenguin wrote:
You seem to know quite a bit about fallacies. Wanna join the Fallacy Police?

Did you make that up just now?
UtherPenguin
Posts: 4,087
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6/13/2015 8:20:26 PM
Posted: 2 years ago
At 6/13/2015 8:17:40 PM, Varrack wrote:
At 6/13/2015 8:09:36 PM, UtherPenguin wrote:
You seem to know quite a bit about fallacies. Wanna join the Fallacy Police?

Did you make that up just now?

Nope, I actually tried to create a fallacy police once:

http://www.debate.org...

http://www.debate.org...
I bear witness that there is no God but Allah and that Muhammad (peace and blessing be upon him) is his messenger.
-GreyParrot
UtherPenguin
Posts: 4,087
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6/18/2015 2:01:44 PM
Posted: 2 years ago
Can you do a post on the Appeal to Logic Fallacy?
I bear witness that there is no God but Allah and that Muhammad (peace and blessing be upon him) is his messenger.
-GreyParrot
Varrack
Posts: 2,645
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6/18/2015 2:05:18 PM
Posted: 2 years ago
At 6/18/2015 2:01:44 PM, UtherPenguin wrote:
Can you do a post on the Appeal to Logic Fallacy?

You've already done one on that.

But no one is going to post on this anyway..
sadolite
Posts: 10,021
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6/18/2015 7:02:41 PM
Posted: 2 years ago
At 6/13/2015 7:59:04 PM, Varrack wrote:
There have been a lot of arguments I've seen that attempt to appeal to popular opinion in order to create some kind of contention. Here's the fallacy:

1. Most people approve of X.
2. Therefore X is true

Although this is illogical, there have been other popular-related arguments that try to edge around this and may or may not qualify as fallacious. Some examples I'm thinking of:

1. "There is a majority consensus that presidential term limits should exist, and keeping them in place would be more satisfying to the people, thus they should exist"
2. "Legalizing X is what most people want, so to legalize it is to represent democracy properly"
3. "More people will suffer for not having X legalized because they really want it to be, and if it is legal it will appease their desires"

For the first one, is citizen satisfaction a good argument? Can it be used to argue for the continued existence of X?

For the second one, if I am arguing that X should not be legalized, but my opponent argues that most people want it to be, how do I respond to that? I can't disprove the fact that it is popular opinion, but I'm hesitant to call them out for committing an ad populum, since that may not be what the fallacy really entails. I think it is somehow wrong though.

I could say that the legalization of X may be the popular opinion but it's not necessarily in the best interest of people despite their own convictions. If it really is an argument then it can't be a very strong one, because if I have evidence that X is bad it should sound enough to negate popular convictions.

Any input?

It's called MOB rule or Democracy if you will
Beware of the people who are in your circle but are not in your corner.

And with the stroke of a pen people 18 to 21 who own a gun became criminals and public enemy #1 having committed no crime and having said nothing. Just like the Jews in Germany during WW2. Must be a weird feeling.

When I hear people crying and whining about their first world problems I think about the universe with everything in it and people in wheelchairs and all of their problems go away.