I'm entitled to my opinion

I'm entitled to my opinion (or I have a right to my opinion) is an informal fallacy in which someone dismisses arguments against their position by claiming that they have a right to hold their own particular viewpoint.[1][2] The statement exemplifies a red herring or thought-terminating cliché. The fallacy is sometimes presented as "let's agree to disagree".[3] Whether one has a particular entitlement or right is irrelevant to whether one's assertion is true or false. Where an objection to a belief is made, the assertion of the right to an opinion side-steps the usual steps of discourse of either asserting a justification of that belief, or an argument against the validity of the objection.[4] Such an assertion, however, can also be an assertion of one's own freedom from, or a refusal to participate in, the rules of argumentation and logic at hand.[5]

Philosopher Patrick Stokes has described the expression as problematic because it is often used to defend factually indefensible positions or to imply "an equal right to be heard on a matter in which only one of the two parties has the relevant expertise".[6] Further elaborating on Stokes' argument, philosopher David Godden argued that the claim that one is entitled to a view gives rise to certain obligations, such as the obligation to provide reasons for the view and to submit those reasons to contestation; Godden called these the principles of rational entitlement and rational responsibility, and he developed a classroom exercise for teaching these principles.[4]

Philosopher José Ortega y Gasset wrote in his 1930 book The Revolt of the Masses:

The Fascist and Syndicalist species were characterized by the first appearance of a type of man who "did not care to give reasons or even to be right", but who was simply resolved to impose his opinions. That was the novelty: the right not to be right, not to be reasonable: "the reason of unreason."[7]

See also edit

References edit

  1. ^ Whyte, Jamie (2004). "The Right to Your Opinion". Crimes Against Logic. New York: McGraw-Hill. pp. 1–10. ISBN 0-07-144643-5.
  2. ^ Whyte, Jamie (August 9, 2004). "Sorry, but you are not entitled to your opinion". The Times. Archived from the original on December 12, 2013. Alt URL
  3. ^ Bestgen, Benjamin (16 September 2020). "The right to my opinion (Free Speech I)". Scottish Legal News. Retrieved 5 June 2021.
  4. ^ a b Godden, David (2014). "Teaching rational entitlement and responsibility: a Socratic exercise". Informal Logic. 34 (1): 124–151. doi:10.22329/il.v34i1.3882.
  5. ^ For example: Deleuze, Gilles (1994) [1968]. "The Image of Thought". Difference and Repetition. Paul Patton (trans.). New York: Columbia University Press. pp. 129–167 (130). ISBN 0-231-08159-6.
  6. ^ Stokes, Patrick (4 October 2012). "No, you're not entitled to your opinion". The Conversation. Retrieved 7 April 2017.
  7. ^ Gasset, José Ortega y (1985) [1930]. Kerrigan, Anthony; Moore, Kenneth (eds.). The Revolt of the Masses. University of Notre Dame Press. p. 62. ISBN 9780268016098.