Recognizing Logical Fallacies in the Dogmatic Assertions Favoring Same-Sex Marriage:
The purpose of this writing is to bring attention to the logical fallacies involved in the discussion on marriage. My purpose here is to point out that which is valid and invalid from a logical viewpoint. The morality of such matters requires further consideration.
Logical Fallacy #1 "The False Comparison" - comparing one thing to another that is really not related.
Example - There is prejudice against race. There is prejudice against sexual orientation. Therefore sexual orientation is the same as race.
Answer - There are all sorts of prejudice. There is prejudice against nationality, size of body, social class, religion, physical ability. And none of these are considered the same as sexual orientation.
Logical Fallacy #2 "The Red Herring" - an irrelevant topic presented in order to distract attention from the original point of discussion.
Example - "Christians are speaking out about homosexual marriage but Christians are not speaking out about divorce."
Answer - Christians have been addressing the problem and pain of divorce but the actual topic of discussion is the definition of marriage. Let's talk about that.
Logical Fallacy #3 "Appeal to Popularity" - drawing a conclusion regarding the truth of a proposition because of the rule of majority.
Example - 5 Supreme Court Justices rule in favor of same-sex marriage. Therefore same-sex marriage must be ok.
Answer - Popular opinion does not equal truth and goodness. In 1857, 7 Supreme Court Justices ruled Dred Scott had no freedom to be an American citizen because he was African American.
Logical Fallacy #4 “Ad Hominem - against the person” - personal attack intended to damage the credibility of the person rather than answering the issue.
Example - Christians that say homosexuality is sin and support traditional marriage are haters and bigots.
Answer - The vast majority of Christians are speaking out in love without any hate and are not bigots. However, that is not the topic of discussion. The real issue is the moral status of homosexuality and the true definition of marriage.
Logical Fallacy #5 “False Dilemma” - comparing two scenarios from an ‘either/or’ position without considering other relevant possibilities.
Example - Christians should be spending their time on social justice. They should not be spending their time speaking out against same-sex marriage when they could be helping orphans, the sick, the uneducated, and the poor.
Answer - Christians have historically led the way in matters of social justice and they continue to do so. Christians founded children’s homes, hospitals, schools and universities, homeless shelters, and homes for the elderly. They continue to drill water wells, provide medical care, food and clothing, and disaster relief across the world. Christians also speak out on social issues such as the abolition of slavery, racial equality, liberty for all, and a proper definition of marriage.
Logical Fallacy #6 “False Comparison” #2 - comparing one thing to another that is really not related.
Example - Everyone deserves marriage equality and to disallow same-sex marriage is to promote inequality.
Answer - The real issue is not actually “equality” because every person already has (had) equal access to marriage. No person is (was) being denied the equal right to marriage. The LGBT community is not wanting “equality” but rather a new definition of marriage that includes homosexuality.