If If If…

If Kyle Rittenhouse had been a young black man… then _________ fill in the blank.

This structure of argument is the classic use of the logical fallacy known as Hypothosis Contrary to fact.

On my blog under Critical Reasoning you can find a list of fallacies. There you will see this definition and example:

Hypothesis Contrary To Fact

DEFINED: Beginning an argument with a hypothetical statement in which the antecedent (the historically possible situation) is generally known to be false (it never happened)

EXAMPLE. Adam says to Betty, “if contraceptives had not been made readily available to our generation, we would not be seeing the epidemic of STD’s that we have today.”

This is a fallacy for two reasons. The first is the form, which I am not going to bore you with here (affirming the antecedent and denying the consequent and all). All you need to know is that if the IF portion is known to be false, the argument is flawed and worthless. If someone said to you, if Miracle Whip had not been invented, then…STOP them right there and say, IT WAS. End of argument. When people use this fallacy, they are tacitly (sneakily doing so without you knowing it) stating that they know FOR SURE how things would operate in a parallel universe. They don’t know. Neither do you and I. Don’t get sucked into these arguments. It is a complete waste of time and energy. Point them to my fallacy page instead… at least maybe they might learn to present better arguments.


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For His glory,


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