Fun With Fallacies 1: I feel sorry for Angus

No true ScotsmanPoor Groundskeeper Willie, not only is he forced to live in a shed, he can’t put sugar on his porridge either. The “No true Scotsman” fallacy is a classic and it gets the name from the following “discussion”:

Player 1: No Scotsman puts sugar on his porridge

Player 2: My friend Angus is from Scotland and puts sugar on his porridge

Player 1: Well, no TRUE Scotsman puts sugar on his porridge

Usually, this fallacy happens when someone is trying to distance themselves from facts that undermine their argument or position. As I’m sure you remember from my post on basic logic, if premises are proven not to be true, then the conclusions are invalid. This goes to both soundness and validity in that, if premises are proven untrue, then the argument is invalid, and if empirical observation contradicts the argument, then it is also not sound; in short, it is a poor argument.

The fun version:

Player 1: Feminism is about equality of the sexes

Player 2: Valerie Solanas is a feminist and she wants to kill men.

Player 1: Then she’s obviously not a real feminist.

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2 comments on “Fun With Fallacies 1: I feel sorry for Angus

  1. […] post in the fun with fallacies series, Angus is very grateful. For those who did not, the “No true Scotsman” is a fallacy with many uses, where most of them are very useful for confusing both an […]

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  2. Player 1: Feminism is about equality of the sexes

    Player 2: Valerie Solanas is a feminist and she wants to kill men.

    Player 1: Then she’s obviously not a real feminist.

    Given your Right Wing political beliefs – funny. However, this is very iffy in being a fallacy, I don’t think it is an NTS fallacy.

    If P1 is true [Feminism is defined as “equality of the sexes”] and this statement is true

    then if

    Valerie Solanas really does wish to kill all men

    then she is not a Feminist.

    And stating this does NOT mean NTS fallacy.

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