Appeal to Consequences
(argumentum ad consequentiam)

The author points to the disagreeable consequences of holding a particular belief in order to show that this belief is false.


  1. You can't agree that evolution is true, because if it were, then we would be no better than monkeys and apes.
  2. You must believe in God, for otherwise life would have no meaning . . .


Identify the consequences to and argue that what we want to be the case does not affect what is in fact the case.


The above excerpt is authored by and © Stephen Downes, 1995, (with minor modifications and pipelinking by me). Used with author's permission (excerpted here):

"Permission is granted to use, abuse and reproduce this document in any way you wish provided (a) you don't claim copyright over it, (b) you don't charge anyone for using it, and (c) you indicate its original authorship."

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