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Logical Fallacy of Stereotyping


Logical Fallacy of Stereotyping

The logical fallacy of stereotyping is one of the many smokescreens that are used to cover the fact that the reasoning is based on one of the three fallacies of Agrippa's trilemma. Whenever a logical fallacy is committed, the fallacy has its roots in Agrippa's trilemma. All human thought (without Divine revelation) is based on one of three unhappy possibilities. These three possibilities are infinite regress, circular reasoning, or axiomatic thinking. This problem is known as Agrippa's trilemma. Some have claimed that only logic and math can be known without Divine revelation; however, that is not true. There is no reason to trust either logic or math without Divine revelation. Science is also limited to the pragmatic because of the weakness on human reasoning, which is known as Agrippa's trilemma.

The Logical Fallacy of Stereotyping occurs when an assumption is made that what is considered to be true (or thought to be true) of a larger class/group is true for ALL the members of that class/group. A class or a group can be any persons, places, or things. The word, "stereotyping," is generally used in regard to people, however. Often, stereotypes are built on extremely small sample sizes, hearsay, or no evidence at all. Most of the condemnation of stereotyping takes place when the stereotyping is in regard to gender, race, or non-Christian religions. For some reason, it is widely considered politically correct to use stereotyping in regard to Christians, particularly Christians who believe what God is telling them through Scripture.

Examples of the Logical Fallacy of Stereotyping

  • Gender stereotypes
  • Race stereotypes
  • Religion stereotypes

The liberal news media began using the same word, fundamentalist, to describe Christians who believe the Bible and Muslim terrorists.

By using the same word to describe two radically different groups, the media works to create a violent stereotype of Christians in the minds of the masses.

Sandy: "I knew a Christian, and she had no idea about science. Christians don't know anything about science."

Rocky: "I knew an Atheist, and he had no idea about science. But it would be stereotyping to say that no Atheists know anything about science."

Applying a general rule to an entire population based on one person is known as stereotyping, and it is a logical fallacy.

Sandy: "Christians are all hypocrites."

Rocky: "How so?"

Sandy: "My mom would be oh so proper in front of the pastor, but you should have heard her swear when he wasn't around."

Rocky: "I don't know your mom, so I can't comment on her, but would you think that you might be stereotyping based on very little evidence?"

The word, Christian, is a very general word. Originally, it meant Christ-one. While some Christians are Christ-ones today, many are not. In fact, you may have to search for a while before you find a person who actually knows Christ personally and is walking in the power of the Holy Spirit, being led moment-by-moment. However, you won't find a perfect follower of Christ, because the Church has not yet come to the measure of the stature of the fullness of Christ as prophesied in Ephesians 4. Rather, we are all learning to hear His Voice more clearly and to respond in submission more completely.

Christian Stereotypes:

(Note that the word, "Christian," is used with many different meanings. Some who are "Christian" actually know Christ and follow Him moment by moment. They don't worship theologies, theories, or ideas. They know that King of kings personally and worship Him. Some who are "Christian" follow dead forms and rituals while others follow entertainment and think that human feeling is the Holy Ghost. Some who are "Christian" have no desire to fellowship with other believers or to reach higher heights or deeper depths in Christ Jesus. Some who are "Christian" don't think that the Bible is the Word of God without error. Some who are "Christians" have a mean, vindictive, nasty religion. Some who are "Christian" have engaged in violence against any who disagreed with them--we don't see that much any more, but it happened several hundred years ago. All in all, that is a wide range of people all labeled with the same word, "Christian." While the labeling problem has more to do with fallacies other than stereotyping, it is related in that stereotypes tend to be applied to labels.)

  • white southerners (Really?)
  • hate Obama, homosexuals, adulterers, drug-users (Hate for people is not something to which the Holy Spirit leads. Hate for sin is the leading of the Holy Spirit, since sin is failure to listen to the moment-by-moment leading of the Holy Spirit and failure to respond in submission and obedience, allowing the Holy Spirit to do His works through the Christian.)
  • refuse to believe in science (The word, "science," has many meanings. Most Christians believe in scientific method and the useful, but limited, way that it can be rationally applied. However, many Christians don't accept pseudoscience, such as the Big-Bang-Billions-of-Years-No-Flood-Molecules-to-Man, Naturalism, or Materialism.)
  • judgmental (This is more of a human problem rather than a Christian problem. In fact, some people are judgmental in that they judge others of being judgmental. The fact is that God never leads one person to condemn another, but God does give good judgment between right and wrong, truth or lie, and spirit versus flesh. Discernment in these areas is not available to naturalists or Atheists because of Agrippa's Trilemma.)
  • hypocritical (This is another human problem as opposed to a Christian problem. Christians are not exempt, however. The Holy Spirit teaches that all are condemned because of sin. There is not a just person on the Earth who does what is right without sinning. Sin is either stepping or slipping from the path that leads to eternal life. Christ is that path as He leads us moment by moment. Anyone who claims to be a "good person" or who tries to get to Heaven by self-generated good works is being hypocritical.)
  • act like they’re better than everyone else (This is also a human problem rather than a Christian problem. While it doesn't make sense of a Christian to act this way, some do. Perhaps all do at some time. It is a manifestation of the fleshly nature. For a Christian, the Holy Spirit works to put the fleshly nature to death, however, it is a slow death that takes place among only those Christians who are actually following Christ. No one has arrived at that high calling. Many are pressing toward the mark. Some think that they have arrived. There is a logical fallacy of claiming the high ground in which one person claims that they are the ones who are correct or moral. You hear this from Christians and Atheists alike. In the end, God will judge who has followed Him in obedience and who has not.)

Last updated: Sep, 2014
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