Fallacy of the Week – Fallacy of Division
Fallacy of Division _ the supposition that what is true of the whole must also be true of the parts. A reverse of Fallacy of Composition.
One of the wealthiest communities in America is Beverly Hills, California. Bob lives there so he must be rich.
The fallacy of division happens when someone makes the argument that what is true of a whole must be true of its constituent parts, without evidence to support the premise. This is often used to marginalize a person’s viewpoint by associating them with a group’s traits.
The fallacy of division could be associated with a hasty generalization or red herring to distract from the point of an argument. In our example, the fictional Bob could be from out of town, homeless or maybe bankrupt.
Watch out for this fallacy and ask for specifics. As always, fallacies tend to run in the dark and away from the facts.