False Analogy

We might also put the group named “false analogy” into a “logical fallacy” group. “Logical fallacy” means there is a failure of reasoning.

So, for readers, it is key to recognize when there are logical fallacies as they are diminishing the author’s message’s value.

So, as I said, false analogies are logical fallacies. So we can call false analogies also failures of reasoning.

To be more specific, this happens when authors suggest that two things or happenings are similar when they are, in fact, different. Basically, false analogies are false comparisons.

 

Question 1 of 2

Mini-test: False Analogy

 

'Students should be allowed to look at their textbooks during examinations. After all, surgeons have X-rays to guide them during an operation; lawyers have briefs to guide them during a trial; carpenters have blueprints to guide them when they are building a house. Why, then, shouldn't students be allowed to look at their textbooks during an examination?”

1. Which of the following best explains the problem with the analogy above?

A.
B.
C.
D.

Question 1 of 2

Question 2 of 2

 

Mini-test: False Analogy

 

Efforts to ban chlordane assailed

WASHINGTON (AP)--The only exterminator in Congress told his colleagues Wednesday that it would be a short- sighted move to ban use of chlordane and related termiticides that cause cancer in laboratory animals.

Supporters of the bill, however, claimed that the Environmental Protection Agency was 'dragging its feet' on a chemical that could cause 300,000 cancers in the American population in 70 years.

'This bill reminds me of legislation that ought to be introduced to outlaw automobiles' on the grounds that cars kill people, said Rep. Tom DeLay, R-Texas, who owns an exterminating business.

EPA banned use of the chemicals on crops in 1974, but permitted use against termites because the agency did not believe humans were exposed. Chlordane does not kill termites but rather drives them away.

Source: Associated Press, June 25th, 1987

2. Representative DeLay is comparing banning the use of the pesticide chlordane to banning the use of automobiles.

Which of the following differences makes this a weak or false analogy?

A.
B.
C.
D.

Question 2 of 2


 

This transcript is for your convenience.
Many times, authors use false analogies when they want to convince their readers that something that’s unknown is just like something that’s familiar. Then, the authors are taking something that’s unknown to the reader and compare that to something that’s familiar.

Well, with this, the authors are taking advantage of the ignorance of the readers because, as I said, here they compare something unknown to something familiar. The readers are not familiar with that unknown thing the authors are talking about. And because of that, authors can take advantage of the ignorance of their readers.

For an example of a false analogy look at the following sentence:

Not giving a tip a waitress is just like stealing money from someone’s wallet.”

Sure, failing to tip a waitress is rude, particularly when the provided service was good. Then again, for failing to tip, people do not get arrested like they would if they would steal money from a wallet.

So, comparing stingy diners with stealing and thieves is an example of false analogy.