© 2011-2019 by Zack Smith. All rights reserved.
An argument is constructed where because one thing is such a way,
therefore all members of its group are such a way.
group is often described as people, but in truth
can be anything: Things, actions, situations et cetera.
- An instance of a People/Object/Event X has characteristic C.
- Therefore all instances of X have characteristic C. ]]
In a Hasty Generalization, the arguer fails to assess or even consider the full data set, because he wants to argue the validity of the second claim, that all X are C.
Hey coworker, you made a mistake in that project, therefore you always make mistakes.
(This is sometimes known as
I once heard about an atheist who was mean, so they're all mean.
The team lost their first game. Therefore they will lose all of the games.
I heard a plane crashed once, so I'm afraid air travel is very dangerous.
You forgot a fact in the interview. Therefore you don't know anything at all.
You got an answer wrong on your test. Therefore all of your answers are wrong.
Any data other than the limited set the arguer is focusing on will disprove his claim. He knows this so tell anyone he is trying to influence that he's fixating on a narrow set of evidence. He is blowing it out of proportion.
The arguer is
making a mountain out of a molehill means accentuating
the importance of something trivial.
If the arguer does not have bad intentions but for instance is motivated by fear, kindly point out that he is making an inductive error (specific to general), and demand that the arguer consider all data.
An arguer may use evasive tactics such as:
If the fallacy is directed at a group of people, counterexamples are usually easy to find that disprove that all members of a group are a given way.