Terri Murray explains how contemporary views on non-binary genders simply beg the question of two distinct genders. Circular reasoning or begging the question is a fallacy in which the speaker’s conclusion is presupposed in his premise(s).

New semantics seem to be entering public discourse and academia at an alarming rate. From ‘trans kids’, to ‘intersectionality’, ‘Islamophobia’, ‘TERFs’, the ‘Alt Right’ and ‘liberal eugenics’, many new terms have been unquestioningly adopted and incorporated into our everyday vocabulary. With new words come new ideas, and sometimes these neologisms function as Trojan horses. Often, when we accept that proffered neologisms are meaningful (e.g…

By Angelos Sofocleous

Humans are able to apply logic to arguments, but our faulty educational system and human nature make for a society that is riddled with fallacies.

Logic is the study of the formation of arguments and their structure. It explains how arguments can be formed so as to be valid, sound and convincing. As humans, we are capable of understanding and applying rules of logic in our arguments. However, this does not often happen for two main reasons.

First, one would think that knowing how to construct good arguments under a system of logic should be a basic component of the education system. However, logic is worryingly absent from the curricula. …

Proponents of cultural relativism often misunderstand the arguments of their critics, and are unaware of their own inconsistency, particularly as liberals.

Cultural relativism is the idea that a person’s beliefs, values, and practices should be evaluated by the standards of their own culture rather than a universal one. Those who believe in universal human rights would reject this idea, but it has nonetheless gained currency within the postmodern/SocJus/Identitarian Left. Proponents of ‘culturally relative ethics’ may not frequently use the term ‘cultural relativism’ to describe their position, but it is what they are doing when they respond to criticism of another culture with ‘It’s their culture, not yours! Who are you to criticise it?’ …

By Helen Pluckrose

One of the most glaring logical fallacies in our current discourse is the conflation of the right to choose with the ethical rightness of that choice.

There seems to be some difficulty in understanding the distinction between defending the right to make a choice and defending the choice as ethically right. This distinction is central to liberalism and yet it is primarily liberals committing these logical fallacies.

The word ‘liberal’ comes from the Latin stem ‘liber’ meaning ‘free’; liberalism has always been concerned with individuals’ freedom to make choices for their own lives provided they do not impinge upon the rights or freedoms of others. The concept of ‘tolerance’ is closely related to this. …

By Terri Murray

It was intended that when Newspeak had been adopted once and for all and Oldspeak forgotten, a heretical thought . . . should be literally unthinkable, at least so far as thought is dependent on words.” — George Orwell, 1984

Some Preliminaries

To begin with we must understand that the ‘regressive left’ are liberalism’s impersonators. …

By Terri Murray

Bad analogies are being increasingly wielded by those who want to quash liberal principles and establish blasphemy laws to ‘protect’ religious convictions.

Bad Analogies

Part of the purpose of this column is to show how the positive connotations and moral prestige associated with political and social liberalism are today routinely transferred to new and seemingly similar ideas or policies. This is accomplished in large part by means of bad analogies. Bad analogies invite a comparison between two ideas or situations that are not actually similar and may even be quite dissimilar in important respects.

One example of a bad analogy is the word “Islamophobia” which implies a similarity between irrational fear or prejudice of homosexuals (“homophobia”) and irrational fear or prejudice…

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Through its presence on Medium, Conatus News aspires to continue sparking debate and leading the conversation on a variety of issues within, but not limited to, politics, philosophy, religion, culture, and science.

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By Terri Murray

Bad analogies are being increasingly wielded by those who want to quash liberal principles and establish blasphemy laws to ‘protect’ religious convictions.

Bad Analogies

Part of the purpose of this column is to show how the positive connotations and moral prestige associated with political and social liberalism are today routinely transferred to new and seemingly similar ideas or policies. This is accomplished in large part by means of bad analogies. Bad analogies invite a comparison between two ideas or situations that are not actually similar and may even be quite dissimilar in important respects.

One example of a bad analogy is the word “Islamophobia” which implies a similarity between irrational fear or prejudice of homosexuals (“homophobia”) and irrational fear or prejudice…

Conatus News is proud to announce its new project, Conatus Features!

Conatus Features hosts some of the best articles of Conatus News that our diverse team of authors has written over the years on a wide array of topics, and includes long-form essays and series of articles by Conatus News’ writers.

Through its presence on Medium, Conatus News aspires to continue sparking debate and leading the conversation on a variety of issues within, but not limited to, politics, philosophy, religion, culture, and science.

Make sure to follow us on Medium to receive our articles first and engage in the discussion.

Secularism remains a taboo subject in Nigeria, with Christian and Muslim figures each dominating cultural and legal institutions in the country.

The African Consortium for Law and Religion Studies recently organised a meeting to explore how law and religion related to human flourishing. Presenters shared insights on the intersections between the various faiths and laws in different African countries. This meeting of the regional body, held May 20–22, provided a platform for Nigerian scholars and policymakers to debate and heatedly exchange ideas on the secularity or non-secularity of the Nigerian state. Secularism is a charged topic in Nigeria due to its tendency to limit particular religious spaces. Although it was a conference where presenters were expected to describe and explain their…

Conatus Features

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