Thursday, March 2, 2017

The Texas Sharpshooter Fallacy

This fallacy, at its core, is one that I believe every person will use as means to persuade other individuals; while, also being persuaded themselves when this is applicable. The Texas Sharpshooter Fallacy essentially is when similarities are compared, regardless to how few there may be, with an attempt to ignore or hide the vast differences; thus leading to a false conclusion or sense of acceptance. There are many examples of the Texas Sharpshooter Fallacy in the link I've provided. I know I have fallen suspect to drawing conclusions and making assumptions based off of simple similarities that hide the differences, which are arguably more important when making a choice on certain topics.

This is the link to the article about the fallacy:

Through reading examples posted in this link, such as John F. Kennedy and Abraham Lincoln; it becomes clear that anyone is susceptible to the Texas Sharpshooter Fallacy. From reading these different examples and understanding what this fallacy truly aims to do, I focused on coming up with an example in every day, present, life in which we use this fallacy. That's when I turned to HGTV and their show Property Brothers.

Property Brothers is a home buying and flipping show. There are two brothers, Johnathan and Drew Scott, one who is a home flipper and the other who is more of a real estate agent. The two brothers are given a budget by the home owners looking to move; one is to remodel their current home, the other is to find them a new home. Where I discovered the Texas Sharpshooter Fallacy happens quite frequently is in fact, in the home buying market. The one brother, I believe Johnathan, is the real estate agent and frequently shows couples different homes. I've noticed that often he'll take couples to home out of their budget and then show them all the amenities it offers as a way to distract them that is is over their budget. An example would be similar to "I know your budget is 400,000 dollars, but this house has everything you want. It has a pool, its remodeled, there's a ton of room in the back yard for future kids, there's a brand new roof AND it is only 700,000 dollars!" Not every time do couples accept the similarities as a way to outweigh the fact that the home is almost double their budget; but there are plenty of times in which this fallacy is used and successful to home buyers.

There are obviously many way in which people will use the Texas Sharpshooter Fallacy with the goal to persuade or misinform; however, it is also the job of each individual to scrutinize what is said to them to whatever extend they need to, in order to make a well informed decision. This could mean in ways such as being an informed constituent in elections or being a home buyer with a set budget.

This is also a link to HGTV's show Property Brothers:

McRaney, D. (2010, September 11). The Texas Sharpshooter Fallacy . Retrieved February 28, 17, from

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