Por acaso, pouco tempo depois surgiu este excelente artigo, sobre um assunto completamente diferente:
"A Primer on Logic" por Mark R. Crovelli
.... I am one of the most dastardly scoundrels in the world simply because I think that drunk driving ought to be legalized.
The Argumentum ad Misericordiam Fallacy
"I sincerely hope that no one you know or love is killed by a drunk driver.... You might then change your mind about whether prevention is better than punishment."
The reason why these sorts of arguments are instances of the argumentum ad misericordiam fallacy, and are thus improper, is that they appeal to emotions that have absolutely nothing to do with the argument under discussion .... it is totally irrelevant whether or not I might change my mind if someone I know is killed by a drunk driver, or whether human life is irreplaceable. Either my arguments are sound, or they’re not – and appeals to irrelevant emotional responses cannot help us determine whether my argument is sound.
The The Ad Hominem Fallacy
"Your opinion matches every other drunk I've known, in that you think that you are able to handle yourself behind the wheel."
.... my personal character has absolutely nothing to do with my arguments. I might be a drunk, coke-head, hippie, serial killer, but these character traits have nothing to do with my arguments that drunk-driving laws have the exact opposite effect from what most people believe. Again, the arguments are either sound or they’re not – regardless of whether I am a "drunk." ....
The Circular Argument Fallacy
"We have laws in this country governing driving. Like stop signs. If you break the law by driving through a stop sign, you get a ticket. The same is, and ought to be, true of drunk drivers. They break the law, and should be punished for it."
.... If you want to demonstrate that drunk driving ought to be illegal, then you have to provide an argument to that effect. You cannot simply assume that ought to be illegal throughout your entire argument, because you will be committing a serious logical fallacy. Similarly, you cannot argue that "because it’s the law, that means it’s wrong," because you need to prove to us anti-prohibitionists that it ought to be the law in the first place!
Quod Nimis Probat, Nihil Probat (What Proves Too Much, Proves Nothing)
"Am I to understand that you support WAITING until someone DIES to object to another’s irresponsibility? I find that simplistic, foolish, and unacceptable. The reason I do is that the life lost is irreplaceable!"
The problem with this sort of argument is that it proves far, far too much (in addition to making an irrelevant appeal to emotion). For, this argument could be extended to all aspects of human life, and virtually everything people do would be punished by ruthless laws – regardless of whether people actually hurt anyone .... if the argument were taken to its logical conclusion, every single human action would be punished by draconian laws and jack-booted policemen, since people can, and do, negligently kill other people in virtually every situation where men encounter one another on this planet. ....