Presentation on theme: "Argumentation A Primer in Logic. Declaration of Independence The representatives of the thirteen American colonies wanted to justify to the world their."— Presentation transcript:
Declaration of Independence The representatives of the thirteen American colonies wanted to justify to the world their rebellion against England. They used a rational argument to support this thesis: “These United Colonies are, and of right ought to be, Free and Independent States…and that all political connection between them and Great Britain is, and ought to be, dissolved.”
The Basic Argument Tyrannical rulers deserve no loyalty. King George III is a tyrannical ruler over the thirteen Colonies. Therefore, King George does not deserve their loyalty. Because the Colonies are not obliged to be loyal to George II, they are free to declare their independence.
Deductive Argument Clearly stated premises. Conclusion is necessary. If the premises are true, then you have to accept the conclusion. “Ironclad logic” If the argument is valid then you can disagree only by denying one of the premises.
Declaration of Independence First premise Tyrannical rulers deserve no loyalty. How do we know that this is true?
Declaration of Independence First Premise – Tyrannical rulers deserve no loyalty. Self-evidence, truths that any thinking person can easily recognize: We hold these truths to be self-evident…” Authority, using ideas from the well- respected English philosopher John Locke: “unalienable rights [of] life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness. That to secure these rights, governments are instituted…”
Declaration of Independence First Premise – True Tyrannical rulers deserve no loyalty.
Declaration of Independence Second premise King George III is a tyrannical ruler. How do we know that this is true?
Inductive Argument No necessary conclusions. A reasonable person can agree with the premises and still disagree with the conclusions. Inductive arguments are at best “probably” true. Most important arguments are inductive.
Inductive Argument — I Analogy: One thing is like the other. The weakest kind of inductive argument Plato’s Republic: Virtue in the human soul is like justice in the state.
Inductive Argument — II Generalization: What is true of one thing is true of all. The basis for most scientific laws. Every crow I have ever seen is black, so all crows are black.
Inductive Argument — III Convergence: All the evidence points in the same direction. This is the prosecutor’s kind of argument. The Declaration of Independence uses a convergence argument.
Declaration of Independence 2 nd Premise A tyrant will: Not allow subjects to make their own laws. Make sure his own people are judges. Harass the people with bureaucratic procedures. Deny civil rights of the people. Use his military to intimidate them. Etc. etc. King George III has Prevented colonies from passing their own laws Set up his own judiciaries. Erected a multitude of new offices Obstructed colonists in exercise of their rights. Used military to keep Colonies in line.
Declaration of Independence Second Premise – True or False? The colonists have a good case, but does the King have good reasons that they are not taking into account? With inductive arguments there is no certainty, only probability or likelihood. The 2 nd premise is probably true.
The Argument Restated Tyrannical Rulers deserve no loyalty. Proved by appeal to self-evidence and the ideas of a well- respected expert. King George III is a tyrannical ruler over the American Colonies. Proved by listing many ‘qualifications’ of a tyrant and showing that George III meets them. Therefore, King George III deserves no loyalty from the American Colonies.