by Catherine Giordano
What Are Logical Fallacies?
In simple terms, logical fallacies are errors in reasoning which lead to false conclusions. If they go unrecognized and unchallenged, they corrupt rational thinking and reasoned debate.
Sometimes these errors of thinking occur by mistake. Humans are pattern–seeking beings. We tend to see patterns even when there are none.
- For instance, people looked up into the sky and saw a random array of stars and decided it looked like a dipper.
- Another example is a misunderstanding of mathematics and science, particularly probability. Coincidences may be far more common than people think.
Other times, charlatans deliberately use tricks to sell lies. Their reasoning seems to make sense, but you could be conned if you cannot see the logical fallacies in their statements.
Here are some of the logical fallacies you are likely to encounter most often. . . .