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The fallaciousness of liberal media elites must be stopped

Michelle Malkin on

Enough is enough. It's epidemic. It's dangerous. And the time has come to demand its end.

In the aftermath of the horrific massacre in Las Vegas, America needs fallacy control. Yes, we must declare war on fallaciousness. Now more than ever, the nation is suffering from an outbreak of illogical thinking. In response to senseless violence, clearheaded citizens deserve a safe space from the 24/7 barrage of rhetorical nonsense. Let's break down the collective cognitive breakdown.

Argumentum ad celebritum.

Empty talking points don't become persuasive arguments when uttered by Hollywood stars. But in the bizarre land of the celebrity cult, late-night comedian Jimmy Kimmel has been suddenly anointed "America's conscience" and "voice of reason."

Kimmel railed "intensely" on TV Monday night against politicians doing "nothing" to stop mass gun violence. Sobbing and emotional, he insisted, "there's a lot of things we can do about it." Yet, Kimmel acknowledged that Mandalay Bay gunman Stephen Paddock had passed multiple, mandated background checks and had no criminal history. Moreover, Paddock bought his guns legally from Nevada and Utah gun shops subject to a thicket of local, state and federal rules -- and reportedly carried 23 of his weapons into a casino/hotel that already operates as a gun-free zone.

Federal studies show that a measly 1 to 3 percent of all guns are purchased at gun shows, but that didn't stop Kimmel from tossing around non sequiturs attacking the "gun show loophole." It's a mythical exemption in federal law for private weapons sales at gun shows or online intended to drum up hysteria about unregulated gun sales. In reality, firearms purchased through federally licensed firearms dealers at gun shops, shows, garage sales or anywhere else are subject to all the usual checks and restrictions. Only a narrow category of same-state transactions between private individuals not engaged in the commercial business of selling firearms (family members or collectors, for example) are unaffected by those regulations.

There is zero empirical evidence that banning these types of transactions would do anything to prevent gun crimes or mass shootings. But who needs evidence when Jimmy Kimmel is bawling on stage "intensely"? The tears of a clown outweigh the sobriety of facts.

Argumentum ad populum and argumentum ad hashtag.

Actor Billy Baldwin unloaded a fallacy two-fer with his assertion that "the overwhelming majority of Dems, Reps & NRA members endorse #GunSafety," so "how can we let the #NRA hold us hostage like this? #NRATerrorists." Claiming that an "overwhelming majority" of people agree with you doesn't make your argument sound. Nor does citing polls showing support for "gun show loopholes" that those surveyed don't fully understand. Nor does attacking the character of your political opponents and hashtag-smearing them as "NRATerrorists" for holding political viewpoints different than your own.

Straw men and red herrings.

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COPYRIGHT 2017 Michelle Malkin
 

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