Fallacies: Everybody’s Using Them!

Part III of a Series by Wyatt Ahrens

Ad: Hi, I’m quarterback Ketch Zeball, and I play to win. You can win, too, with Home Run Hitter premium baseball bats and mitts. Buy at your local sporting goods store.
Ad: Fabulous Fashions – the trendiest, most popular clothes online! Download our premium app and buy today!

My last article touched on a group of logical fallacies (deceptive arguments that can be identified with logical thinking) called Appeals to Emotion, which try to make you feel a certain way about the subject and then act on your emotions.

The first ad above makes a similar type of appeal – they want your feelings about Ketch Zeball to be transferred to the baseball merchandise they’re selling. However, a problem is revealed if you look closer: Ketch Zeball is a football quarterback, not a baseball player. He’s not an authority on which baseball products are the best. That’s why this type of argument is called an Appeal to Illegitimate Authority. Most celebrity endorsements commit this fallacy, because companies hire celebrities to advertise for them even if they know nothing about the product.

The same type of mistake is made if you accept an argument solely based on its popularity, which is how the second ad tries to convince you. This type of argument is called an Appeal to Popularity or a Mob Appeal. If a product has been selling well, that might seem like a good reason to buy it, but as in the Ketch Zeball example, the people who bought the product are not authorities on the product. They may have had different needs than you do or been swayed by the same ad you just read. You can’t trust that they investigated the quality and effectiveness of the product before buying, so you will have to find out for yourself.

An Impossible Thing To Say

A Book Review by Bridget Mcilquham

An Impossible Thing To Say by Arya Shahi is a beautiful book written in verse. As you read this book it has you questioning things about your own culture and language that you wouldn’t have thought about before.

This book is about self-discovery and unveiling all the questions surrounding having a first crush and learning how to understand your culture and language in a world that doesn’t understand it to begin with.

As I read this book, I found myself reading about situations that I haven’t experienced culturally, but they truly pulled me in, and I felt the emotion in this book.

This book is quite a journey, but it’s beautiful and realistic at the same time. While reading this book, I was surrounded by characters living through situations similar to my own in high school. I find this book relevant to problems teens have today, and it’s comforting to read that we aren’t alone.

Pride and Prejudice

A Book Review by Natalie Ahrens

Have you ever imagined what your life would be like as a teenager in the early 19th century? Set in the English countryside, Pride and Prejudice by Jane Austen follows the life of Elizabeth Bennett, a clever young lady of about 20 years, who prides herself on being a very good judge of character. Elizabeth lives with her mother, father, and sisters. Her beautiful elder sister, Jane, is sweet and cannot think badly of anybody. Bookish Mary likes to lecture her family about morals. The youngest girls, Kitty and Lydia, only like to flirt with soldiers, which constantly embarrasses their elder sisters.

Nervous Mrs. Bennett is extremely concerned about getting her daughters well married. As Mr. Bennett has no sons, his estate is entailed out to his closest male relative, so when he dies, his wife and daughters will be evicted from their home. Therefore, the girls and their mother are excited when a rich young bachelor, Mr. Bingley, moves into Netherfield, a nearby manor.

Accompanying friendly Mr. Bingley are his two sisters and his wealthy, eligible friend, Mr. Darcy. Mr. Darcy instantly shows himself to be a proud man, who doesn’t condescend to speak to many. When they meet, Mr. Darcy and Elizabeth both decide that the other is conceited, and do not like each other. I cannot decide who is proud, who is prejudiced, or whether they both are!

Following is an enchanting and humorous story full of clever dialogue and delightful romance. Elizabeth is a witty heroine, and you quickly become invested in her life. The many twists and turns in the plot keep you excited to keep reading. Every time I read this classic, I am freshly enveloped in the lives of the characters, who are masterfully written in a way that makes them seem real. This is a charming book that everyone should read.

The Teen Advisory Board of the Library is made up of a variety of teens aged 12-18 that meet once a month to discuss all things library. They develop events and curate different displays for the teen lounge. To learn more about TAB information and an application form can be found on the Library website. Visit the Teen Advisory Board application page.