A. This week we are focused on learning how to think critically and logically. Based on your experiences in life so far, what do you think are some common barriers that make it hard for people to think critically and logically?
B. Here is a quote from the 19th century English philosopher John Stuart Mill:
In the case of any person whose judgment is really deserving of confidence, how has it become so? Because he has kept his mind open to criticism of his opinions and conduct. Because it has been his practice to listen to all that could be said against him; to profit by as much of it as was just, and expound to himself, and upon occasion to others, the fallacy of what was fallacious. Because he has felt, that the only way in which a human being can make some approach to knowing the whole of a subject, is by hearing what can be said about it by persons of every variety of opinion, and studying all modes in which it can be looked at by every character of mind. No wise man ever acquired his wisdom in any mode but this; nor is it in the nature of human intellect to become wise in any other manner. The steady habit of correcting and completing his own opinion by collating it with those of others, so far from causing doubt and hesitation in carrying it into practice, is the only stable foundation for a just reliance on it: for, being cognizant of all that can, at least obviously, be said against him, and having taken up his position against all gainsayers knowing that he has sought for objections and difficulties, instead of avoiding them, and has shut out no light which can be thrown upon the subject from any quarter–he has a right to think his judgment better than that of any person, or any multitude, who have not gone through a similar process (Chapter 2 of On Liberty)
Summarize what this quote is saying in your own words and what it can teach us about thinking critically.
C. One of the things that we are doing this week is discussing various logical fallacies that people are prone to fall into. Explain the ad hominem fallacy in your own words, and, after you explain it, provide an example of it that you have come across in your life.
D. One of the things that we are doing this week is discussing various logical fallacies that people are prone to fall into. Explain the dubious authority fallacy in your own words, and, after you explain it, provide an example of it that you have come across in your life.