Fallacies (المغالطات)

Fallacy 3 : The Appeal to Ridicule

FALLACY:

The APPEAL TO RIDICULE

 

~EXAMPLE~

The Appeal to Ridicule: this type of fallacy is also known as ‘the appeal to mockery’ or the ‘horse laugh’ and is a fallacy in which overt ridicule or mockery is substituted for evidence in an ‘argument’. This line of ‘reasoning’ has the following form:

1. X, which is some form of ridicule, is directed at a claim, C.

2. Therefore claim C is false.

This sort of ‘reasoning’ is purely fallacious because mocking a claim does not show that it is false. This is especially clear in the following example:

P1. 1 + 1 = 2? That’s the most ridiculous thing I have ever heard!

C1. Therefore, 1 + 1 = 2 is false!

Example:

M: I really do think it is possible to bring back Islam as it was in the past with its complete systems.

R: Yeah, of course you would! That’s just laughable and pure fantasy. You crazy islamist brothers, man, always banging on about khilafah as the solution!

Notes:

  • Finding an argument as “laughable”, a “fantasy” and labeling the proponents of the argument as “crazy” has no bearing on the truth or falsity of the argument.
  • This fallacy slips into many arguments and the da`wa carrier must be on guard against them.
  • The da`wa carrier will notice these types of argument especially on internet forum and chat rooms by individuals who don’t have an ounce of knowledge but can hide behind a pseudonym and lambaste other Muslims for their views.

 

s.z.c.

London 2003

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