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Philosophy/Logical Arguments


Hi Steven,

I'd like to know more information about a tactic some people use when arguing a point. It goes something like this: Person A wants to force their beliefs on Person B. Person B defends himself by stating, "I respect what you're doing BUT, you do your thing and I'll do mine". This statment allows Person A to weasel his or her way out of the argument and nothing gets resolved. Just off the top of my head, any serial killer or dictator can say the same thing. Do we allow it or stop them?

It just seems like some sort of logical fallacy? If it has a name, I sure don't know it.

Thanks for your help.

In what you describe, the person is choosing to simply not even engage in rational discussion or argumentation.  So there is no fallacy.  Perhaps irrational behavior but no fallacy.

Just because someone doesn't discuss his or her beliefs, however, doesn't exempt his actions from judgment.  We may make moral judgments, ethical judgments, and legal judgments (which takes care of your serial killer situation).

Fortunately most who hold inconsistent beliefs don't act in a manner inconsistent with our legal code:)



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Steven R. Storch


Ethics, Existentialism and Phenomenology, Continental Metaphysics

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