These questions ask you to recognize what's wrong with an argument. Most of these questions require you to point out a fallacy in the argument. These should be easy because we have an extensive section above covering the most common logical flaws.
Here are typical flaw questions:
- Which one of the following contains a flaw that most closely parallels the flaw contained in the passage?
- Which one of the following best identifies the flaw in the above argument?
- In presenting her position, the author does which one of the following?
John: We should oppose any attempt to register firearms. Such regulation is the first step to confiscation of all weapons and the elimination of our constitutional right to bear arms.
Ted: This is preposterous. Many things in society are registered, such as cars, babies, boats and lanes, yet these items have never been confiscated.
What are the flaws in the reasoning above?
Ted is making a faulty analogy between gun registration of guns and registration of cars and babies. But, guns are frequently used as instruments of intentional violence and therefore may be more likely targets for confiscation.
John is making a slippery slope argument that registration of firearms must invariably lead to the elimination of a constitutional right
John: I don't want to die in an accident. Every few days on the TV news I hear of a major plane crash somewhere in the world. I would never fly planes, they are too dangerous.
Ted: Nonsense, statistics show that airplanes are the safest mode of transportation on a per-mile basis.
John: The answer then is not to travel such long distances.
John is pointing out that plane crashes are always in the news, therefore they must be very dangerous. The TV news, however, is a biased sample of all accidents. Minor traffic fatalities around the world rarely make the news, but plane crashes do.
Ted points out the obvious that on a per-mile basis, planes are safer, yet planes can travel ten thousand miles, so a long trip does entail risk. John's final analysis is to play it safe and not to travel long distances at all.