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The Logical Fallacy of Suppressed Evidence

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[Originally published as Logic Lessons: Insufficient Evidence]

In my dealings with evolutionists, I have been amazed at the number of logical fallacies that I have encountered. Many of them stand alone, but many others are combined into a Chaotic Crawling Casserole of Illogic. That is, there are so many errors, conversation becomes almost impossible and you’re much better off watching reruns of “Columbo.”

Among the logical fallacies I have encountered (in English) are:

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  • Attacking the person instead of discussing the topic
  • “You do it too!”
  • Appealing to numbers, as in, “Everybody believes this way” (or “Bandwagon”) to the extreme of accepting evolution on faith, not evidence
  • Confusing cause and effect
  • Straw man (misrepresenting the beliefs of creationists, ID proponents, Christians, the other political party &c. and then ridiculing the caricature that was made up)
  • Appealing to emotion
  • Appealing to unqualified authority
  • Hasty generalizations
  • Appeal to faith in scientism (“Science will someday find or prove such and so”)
  • Outright lies

Well, that’s enough. You get the idea.

But I want to focus on one of the most common errors that I have encountered with evolutionists: The Fallacy of Exclusion (suppressed evidence). I cannot count the number of times that evolutionists and atheists have not bothered to do their homework, and they presume to tell me what I believe (prejudicial conjecture).

Perhaps their straw man arguments are accidental, perhaps not. But I have found that many of my opponents are dismally ignorant of the Bible, creation science… and evolution itself. Some inadvertently make a straw man out of the position that they are attempting to support!

Anyway, the Fallacy of Exclusion is quite simple:

Leaving out evidence that would lead to a different conclusion is called the fallacy of exclusion. An example is:

In the presidential elections of 2000 and 2005, Florida went to Bush, so it must be a Republican state. In fact, the evidence from 1996, which I purposely excluded from the sentence above, shows that Florida went to Clinton in that election, making this, too, a fallacy of insufficient evidence. By choosing to begin with the data from 2000, I was able to exclude evidence that contradicted the conclusion I wished to draw for the sake of this exercise.

The fallacy of insufficient evidence (which includes suppressed evidence) occurs when someone will reach a conclusion through carelessness as well as neglecting or suppressing contrary evidence.

When dealing with information that affects someone’s worldview, it is almost criminal to leave out contrary evidence. It is certainly unethical and immoral. Let me be blunt since I am showing some emotion on this material anyway:

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Suppressing evidence against evolution is not “science”, it is brainwashing.

That’s right, I said it! How can someone make a proper determination about the origins of life, the universe, and everything if the evidence is missing?

Creationist scientists are attacked for being “not scientists” and that is an outright lie. Indeed, scientists who are creationists must have an understanding of evolutionary interpretations to be able to properly present both creationist and evolutionist viewpoints. Creationist laymen, when educated properly, also must have an understanding of evolution so they can evaluate and present their evidence.

This article can become oppressively long if I bring in my encounters with atheists, so I will not go much further.

I insist, however, that evolutionists do not have a sufficient understanding of the creationist viewpoint. Incomplete information leads to horribly wrong conclusions.

The true spirit of scientific inquiry does not inspire suppression and misrepresentation of the evidence. Rather, it inspires a more complete understanding of the subject.

The following humorous short video is all over the Web, and it illustrates what I am saying so well:

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Written by Cowboy Bob Sorensen

Although raised in a United Methodist family where my father was a pastor, I was challenged in my high school years to examine why we believe the Bible and hold to our doctrines. Years later, I drifted from the faith but never fully abandoned it. After I recommitted my life to Jesus in 2010, I was led to establish Weblogs to discuss matters of doctrine, apologetics, and especially biblical creation science. This grew into the Piltdown Superman site. My primary goal is to help equip the church in defending the faith, especially the foundations in Genesis.

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