When responding to an article, it is logical to assume that one would like to come off as intelligent and well-spoken. This is difficult to achieve when fallacies are apparent in many varying fashions throughout the response. Fallacies have the effect of weakening a statement by simply making the writer appear uneducated. In the letter to editor entitled, Ten Commandments shouldn t be in schools which appears in The Pantograph, there are many different examples of fallacies which assume the undesired responsibility of enfeebling the opinion of the writer. The basic view of the writer is clear from the beginning of the response and while there is nothing noticeably objectionable stated, one becomes disillusioned by the author because of her literary lying.
The author s credibility is destroyed by the abundance of fallacies, the first of which is a Straw man. How would you feel if, in addition to the Ten Commandments, we posted the Satanic Ten Commandments The author is clearly taking her adversary s view and twisting it to the extreme. Obviously, no self-respecting school is going to promote the worship of Satan and to suggest such an idea, even in sarcasm, is foolish. A more appropriate way to suggest an alternative to the Ten Commandments would be to propose a different religion such as Judaism post their beliefs in schools. By doing this, the author conveys her message of distaste for religion in schools and maintains a realistic viewpoint.
... be solved. The Ten Commandments are only a start. If the killers at Columbine or any other school had seen "thou ... Should the Ten Commandments be Posted in Schools? ---------------------------------------------------------- Notes: All scripture quotes, unless otherwise indicated, are ... The views expressed below are not necessarily those of the author, but rather are intended to make people think. Feel ...
There is no need for this Straw man. Instead of suggesting a logical choice the author creates another fallacy, a false dilemma. If you want the Ten Commandments posted in school, then start your own school. The author implies that there are only two choices in this matter however this is not the truth, there are many options which can be explored before stating that there are only two choices. The author never suggests posting many different religions viewpoints in school or any other alternative.
By implying that only two choices exist the author is again misleading the reader and damaging her credibility. Next, the author states that, Atheists make up 8% to 10% of the population but account for only 1% of the prison population. However true this may be, unfortunately, it has absolutely no bearing on the topic at hand. This false use of evidence may be a fact, but the topic being discussed is whether or not the Ten Commandments should be posted in schools.
This evidence would only be relevant if the topic were whether one s religious beliefs influence criminal activity. The source of this information is also not quoted. Statistics can be found for anything and 67% of people know that. If the study was related to the Ten Commandments, then it would have merit in the article, but in this response it is simply a fallacy.
In an effort to bestow worth on her opinion, the author borrows a prestige with the quote, The Founding Fathers objected to the Church of England. They wanted to ensure that this did not happen in their fledgling nation. The Founding Fathers desired separation of the Church and the nation, however this quote is a far cry from the ideals that motivated the Founding Fathers of our nation. The Ten Commandments simply being posted on the wall does not constitute a union of Church and State. Being presented in that fashion creates a red herring or a statement used to divert attention from the topic at hand.
Since the author has a distinct lack of evidence, she constructs a statement that on the surface appears plausible. However, upon further thought one discovers the true nature of the claim. The author states that she lives without God and assumedly without the Ten Commandments in her life and has no difficulty recognizing the difference between right and wrong. She continues with I don t need divine guidance to tell me that killing someone is wrong. I don t need divine guidance to tell me that stealing is wrong. My neighbors live in peace and safety and I live without God.
... dollar bears the motto "In God We Trust" then why can we place Ten Commandments in public places. It ... first amendment to the constitution of the United States of America." Most people will even say the ... must "dare defend our rights" as Alabama's state motto declares."No judge or man can dictate what ... church and state have nothing in common. Some supporters against the ...
The hasty generalization made is that since she doesn t believe in God or the Ten Commandments and she has no problems with morals, then consequently, no one should require God or religion to live a morally correct life. The author attempts to create a fact out of her personal experience. There is no context for her to propose that God is not needed based strictly on the fact that she does not worship him. This is her opinion rather than a fact and should be stated in such a way. One cannot claim to find mistakes in the author s opinion, however the argument made is severely weakened by the multiple fallacies contained throughout the article.
The author s credibility is shattered because of the way the response was written and unfortunately that makes any point stressed in the article difficult to accept. Without the abundant fallacies strewn throughout the response, the author s argument would have carried significantly more merit. However, the manor in which this response is written forces the reader to absorb the fallacies, rather than the message.