critical thinking journal 2

Dietary Needs while Hosting Guests

Hello journal, I got plenty to share today, Wednesday 21st September 2016, my most eventful day of the year thus far. Remember Judy, my high school friend, communications director at the white house, Asian-American lady from my writing back in March Judy? Yes, Judy got me an invitation to the 35th edition of the state house dinner. Came as a surprise to me too but I was certainly glad to attend and true to her words it was spectacular. I have never seen such diversity in one room, all races, religions, genders you name it were present. The menu reflected its importance. Cold dark beers with small talks, canapés with niceties, wine to fill the hollowness of the laugh, sorbets to cover the stereotype jokes and coffee to keep the guests awake on the return journey. I did, however, note some unusual things. The Qatari lady representative, the guest professor from Israel and one of the most important people present, the former first lady, did not indulge much and instead restricted their diets to drinks only.

The lady representative I could understand her reasons must have been religion based. The former first lady too is an open advocate for clean eating and insists on people becoming vegetarians for better lifestyle hence her obvious reasons. The Professor, however, I could not understand and just had to get his reasons from him. Standing next to him was a professor too from Poland. I figured they must be friends because of the conversation they were having which made it much easier for me to talk to them both. “Did you know that Hitler had ordered all German soldiers to become vegetarians and it became the first ever state-sponsored incident of a vegetarian diet.” The professor’s response was simple; it is cruel to kill animals for food. See the three had different reasons for restricting their diets. Paying close attention to the crowd, I noticed more people restricting their diets to certain foods. The Usher too had noticed and directed the staff to put identity labels beside the dishes for ease and bam!! The change was drastic. Simply put, more people ate.

Basically, I learned it is important to know your guests in advance as well as understand their preferences. They will actually appreciate your views on healthy eating, animal welfare or whichever other reasons you have to undertake whatever diet you choose to. It is also critical to educate yourself on the options available in a vegetarian diet. One of the options is to go to the stores and find meat substitutes available. There are mind-blowing options like soy-chorizo or vegan roasts that you might not even know they exist until you look around. If you are not able to prepare a fully vegetarian meal by yourself, you can choose to host the occasion in a restaurant. This might sound far-fetched but depending on the cuisine that the restaurant offers, together with

Journals 1-2 Prompt


This is a personal journal where students record, track, and process personal observations
and reflections about critical thinking in their daily life. The students should be focusing
on their own, internal infractions of critical thinking principles and those of others, such
as family and friends in interpersonal interactions. Focus on infractions that are unique to
your own, personal life, your inner reflection about your life and actions, your thoughts,
your interactions with others, things your family or friends do. The point is to take note of
situations in which critical thinking is ​not present​ and the effects of this are apparent. The
purpose of this journal is for students to be more self-aware of the regularity of critical
thinking problems in their lived, daily life so that those problems are less pernicious.

1. In at least one paragraph, ​describe​ the critical thinking infraction as it occurred.

Think of the following points in your description:
a. What, exactly, happened? Tell the story, paying attention to the

who-what-when-where-how details. This context matters for critical
thinking infractions, both in provoking them and understanding them.

b. What, specifically, was the infraction? Thinking of critical thinking as
principles of good reasoning, which principles were absent or violated?

2. In at least one paragraph, ​interpret​ the situation and the infraction. Think of the
following points in your interpretation:

a. Why did the infraction occur in this situation? Attempt to form an
explanation of the situation such that it produced this infraction as a result.

b. Of all of the possible ways for the situation to proceed, why did it proceed
this way–where a critical thinking rule was broken or absent–rather than
the other ways? What was the cause, in other words?

c. In your interpretation, how severe or consequential was the infraction?
Aside from leading to irrationality and false beliefs, what else could occur
as a result if anything?

3. In at least one paragraph, consider how to ​resolve​ the critical thinking infraction
as best as you can. Consider the following points in this resolution:

a. If the situation were repeated, what measures would have to be taken in
order to prevent the infraction from occuring?

b. Given that the infraction actually occurred, what do you do about it now,
after the fact?

c. What factors do you foresee getting in the way of, or at least making
difficult, the prevention or resolution of this infraction?

Prof. Eckel, U. Toledo, SP18

Rhetoric​ ​and​ ​Definitions

Rhetoric:​ ​The​ ​use​ ​of​ ​language​ ​for​ ​the​ ​purpose​ ​of​ ​convincing​ ​an​ ​audience​ ​to​ ​believe​ ​or​ ​do
something.​ ​Rhetoric​ ​is​ ​psychologically​ ​motivating,​ ​but​ ​does​ ​not​ ​use​ ​rational​ ​argumentation​ ​and
has​ ​no​ ​real​ ​commitment​ ​to​ ​truth,​ ​reason,​ ​or​ ​justification.​ ​Reject​ ​rhetoric​ ​on​ ​site.​ ​Assertions
grounded​ ​in​ ​rhetoric​ ​are​ ​disqualified​ ​for​ ​that​ ​reason.​ ​The​ ​following​ ​are​ ​common​ ​rhetorical
devices​ ​and​ ​brief​ ​examples:

1. Innuendo:​ ​​Suggesting​ ​something​ ​subtextually​ ​and​ ​implicitly​ ​without​ ​actually​ ​and
explicitly​ ​stating​ ​it;​ ​may​ ​take​ ​the​ ​form​ ​of​ ​a​ ​rhetorical​ ​question.

a. Public:​ ​​I​ ​didn’t​ ​say​ ​my​ ​opponent​ ​was​ ​a​ ​draft​ ​dodger​ ​or​ ​unpatriotic;​ ​I​ ​merely​ ​said
that​ ​they​ ​got​ ​an​ ​exemption​ ​to​ ​study​ ​philosophy​ ​at​ ​a​ ​university​ ​during​ ​the​ ​war.

b. Interpersonal:​​ ​I​ ​got​ ​groceries,​ ​took​ ​out​ ​the​ ​trash,​ ​made​ ​dinner,​ ​picked​ ​up​ ​the​ ​yard,
and​ ​cleaned​ ​the​ ​living​ ​room.​ ​Can​ ​you​ ​do​ ​the​ ​dishes?

2. Euphemism/Dysphemism:​ ​​Using​ ​positive/negative​ ​connotations​ ​of​ ​words​ ​to​ ​force​ ​the
audience’s​ ​understanding​ ​in​ ​one​ ​direction.

a. Euphemisms:​ ​downsize,​ ​between​ ​jobs,​ ​military​ ​consultant,​ ​kinetic​ ​strike,
collateral​ ​damage,​ ​economic​ ​development,​ ​innocent,​ ​passed​ ​away,​ ​private​ ​parts

b. Dysphemisms:​ ​death​ ​tax,​ ​vulture​ ​fund,​ ​tree​ ​hugger,​ ​feminazi,​ ​trust​ ​fund​ ​baby,
talking​ ​head,​ ​jarhead,​ ​meathead,​ ​slut,​ ​nerd,​ ​blonde,​ ​bossy,​ ​thug,​ ​sheeple

3. Ridicule/Sarcasm:​ ​​Removing​ ​legitimacy,​ ​seriousness,​ ​or​ ​power​ ​through​ ​consistent
undermining​ ​with​ ​humor​ ​or​ ​irony.

4. Hyperbole​:​ ​Using​ ​overstated​ ​and​ ​embellished​ ​language​ ​to​ ​frame​ ​an​ ​issue​ ​for​ ​the​ ​purpose
of​ ​compelling​ ​certain​ ​beliefs​ ​or​ ​actions​ ​regarding​ ​that​ ​issue.

a. The​ ​Iran​ ​nuclear​ ​deal​ ​is​ ​the​ ​worst​ ​deal​ ​ever.
b. They​ ​hate​ ​us​ ​and​ ​they​ ​hate​ ​our​ ​freedom.

5. Rhetorical​ ​Definition:​ ​Defining​ ​a​ ​word​ ​so​ ​that​ ​it​ ​suits​ ​the​ ​speaker’s​ ​purposes,​ ​which​ ​is
stacking​ ​the​ ​deck.

a. The​ ​low-class​ ​is​ ​a​ ​socio-economic​ ​category​ ​comprised​ ​of​ ​people​ ​who​ ​don’t​ ​work
enough​ ​to​ ​support​ ​themselves​ ​adequately.

b. A​ ​terrorist​ ​is​ ​a​ ​religious​ ​extremist.
6. Lying​ ​and​ ​Deception:​ ​Intentionally​ ​misinforming,​ ​disinforming,​ ​obscuring,​ ​or​ ​deflecting

the​ ​audience’s​ ​understanding​ ​in​ ​ways​ ​that​ ​advantage​ ​the​ ​speaker.

Definitions:​ ​The​ ​meaning​ ​of​ ​key​ ​words​ ​(themselves​ ​representing​ ​things,​ ​events,​ ​phenomena,
ideas,​ ​etc.)​ ​in​ ​an​ ​argument​ ​should​ ​


A​ ​fallacy​ ​is​ ​an​ ​error​ ​in​ ​reasoning.​ ​The​ ​kinds​ ​of​ ​fallacies​ ​we​ ​are​ ​currently​ ​interested​ ​in​ ​are​ ​called
informal​ ​fallacies.​ ​These​ ​are​ ​fallacious​ ​arguments​ ​which​ ​are​ ​psychologically​ ​compelling,​ ​but
logically​ ​empty.​ ​Fallacies​ ​are​ ​essentially​ ​bad​ ​inferences​ ​in​ ​arguments.​ ​Certain​ ​information​ ​is
used​ ​to​ ​support​ ​an​ ​idea​ ​(premises​ ​supporting​ ​a​ ​conclusion​ ​in​ ​an​ ​argument),​ ​but​ ​the​ ​connection
between​ ​that​ ​information​ ​and​ ​the​ ​idea​ ​it​ ​is​ ​intended​ ​to​ ​support​ ​is​ ​either​ ​not​ ​sufficient​ ​or
completely​ ​absent.​ ​Psychologically,​ ​however,​ ​we​ ​are​ ​inclined​ ​to​ ​think​ ​that​ ​the​ ​inference​ ​is​ ​an
acceptable​ ​one.​ ​These​ ​errors​ ​rest​ ​on​ ​ambiguous​ ​language,​ ​unwarranted​ ​assumptions,​ ​or​ ​irrelevant

1. Equivocation:​ ​​ ​A​ ​key​ ​term​ ​changes​ ​its​ ​meaning​ ​during​ ​the​ ​argument,​ ​allowing​ ​one​ ​to
conclude​ ​anything​ ​based​ ​on​ ​slipping​ ​definitions.

a. We​ ​have​ ​a​ ​right​ ​to​ ​determine​ ​the​ ​conditions​ ​of​ ​our​ ​own​ ​death.​ ​Therefore,
voluntary​ ​active​ ​euthanasia​ ​is​ ​legal.

b. Man​ ​is​ ​a​ ​rational​ ​animal;​ ​no​ ​woman​ ​is​ ​a​ ​man;​ ​therefore,​ ​no​ ​woman​ ​is​ ​rational.
2. Division:​ ​A​ ​bad​ ​inference​ ​from​ ​the​ ​characteristics​ ​of​ ​a​ ​whole​ ​group​ ​to​ ​its​ ​individual

a. The​ ​team​ ​is​ ​the​ ​best​ ​in​ ​the​ ​league.​ ​Therefore,​ ​the​ ​players​ ​are​ ​the​ ​best​ ​players​ ​in

the​ ​league.
3. Composition:​ ​A​ ​bad​ ​inference​ ​from​ ​the​ ​characteristics​ ​of​ ​the​ ​individual​ ​parts​ ​to​ ​the​ ​whole

a. You​ ​can’t​ ​see​ ​the​ ​atoms​ ​that​ ​make​ ​up​ ​my​ ​body.​ ​I​ ​am,​ ​therefore,​ ​quite​ ​invisible.

4. Ad​ ​Hominem:​ ​When​ ​one​ ​attacks​ ​the​ ​person​ ​who​ ​made​ ​an​ ​argument​ ​in​ ​an​ ​effort​ ​to​ ​refute
it​ ​rather​ ​than​ ​the​ ​argument​ ​itself;​ ​can​ ​be​ ​abusive​ ​(poison​ ​the​ ​well)​ ​or​ ​contextual
(hypocrite​ ​or​ ​stereotype).

a. My​ ​opponent​ ​claims​ ​that​ ​we​ ​should​ ​all​ ​vote​ ​for​ ​him​ ​because​ ​he’ll​ ​save​ ​the
country,​ ​but​ ​he​ ​can’t​ ​even​ ​maintain​ ​a​ ​marriage,​ ​so​ ​we​ ​should​ ​not​ ​vote​ ​for​ ​him

b. The​ ​defendant​ ​has​ ​been​ ​accused​ ​of​ ​theft,​ ​fraud,​ ​and​ ​criminal​ ​negligence​ ​in​ ​the
past,​ ​so​ ​he​ ​must​ ​be​ ​guilty​ ​this​ ​time.

c. Bob​ ​says​ ​that​ ​burning​ ​fossil​ ​fuels​ ​contributes​ ​to​ ​greenhouse​ ​gas​ ​buildup​ ​in​ ​the
atmosphere,​ ​so​ ​it’s​ ​wrong​ ​to​ ​drive.​ ​I​ ​know​ ​he​ ​drives​ ​everywhere,​ ​even​ ​down​ ​the
street,​ ​so​ ​I’m​ ​not​ ​buying​ ​it.

d. She​ ​claimed​ ​that​ ​we​ ​should​ ​avoid​ ​giving​ ​too​ ​much​ ​power​ ​to​ ​the​ ​state,​ ​but​ ​she’s​ ​a
Republican​ ​so​ ​of​ ​course​ ​she’d​ ​say​ ​that.

Barriers​ ​and​ ​Obstacles​ ​To​ ​Critical​ ​Thinking​:​ ​The​ ​Individual/Psychology​ ​and​ ​The

-these​ ​are​ ​natural,​ ​but​ ​provide​ ​unreliable​ ​standards​ ​for​ ​judgment,​ ​or​ ​the​ ​bypassing​ ​of​ ​judgment
overall.​ ​While​ ​being​ ​individuals​ ​with​ ​private​ ​perspectives,​ ​thoughts,​ ​emotions,​ ​desires,
motivations​ ​and​ ​self-interests​ ​is​ ​normal​ ​for​ ​us,​ ​many​ ​barriers​ ​to​ ​critical​ ​thinking​ ​come​ ​from​ ​this
aspect​ ​of​ ​human​ ​nature.​ ​Likewise,​ ​while​ ​we​ ​are​ ​innately​ ​social​ ​beings​ ​who​ ​require​ ​coexistence
with​ ​others​ ​for​ ​development​ ​and​ ​success,​ ​we​ ​can​ ​be​ ​prevented​ ​from​ ​thinking​ ​critically​ ​by​ ​this
aspect​ ​of​ ​ourselves.​ ​All​ ​of​ ​the​ ​points​ ​below​ ​are​ ​potential​ ​barriers​ ​to​ ​critical​ ​thinking.​ ​In​ ​order​ ​to
think​ ​critically,​ ​one​ ​must,​ ​initially,​ ​make​ ​sure​ ​that​ ​none​ ​of​ ​these​ ​barriers​ ​are​ ​in​ ​effect.

1.)​ ​egocentrism:​ ​Using​ ​one’s​ ​own​ ​perspective​ ​as​ ​authoritative​ ​or​ ​one’s​ ​own​ ​self-interests​ ​as
standards​ ​for​ ​no​ ​other​ ​reason​ ​than​ ​that​ ​they​ ​are​ ​one’s​ ​own​ ​perspective​ ​or​ ​interests.​ ​One​ ​is​ ​being
egocentric​ ​when​ ​they​ ​fail​ ​to​ ​view​ ​reality​ ​or​ ​evaluate​ ​beliefs​ ​from​ ​a​ ​vantage​ ​point​ ​other​ ​than​ ​the
one​ ​they​ ​come​ ​most​ ​naturally​ ​with.​ ​This​ ​is​ ​tragic​ ​in​ ​the​ ​sense​ ​that​ ​this​ ​person​ ​will​ ​be​ ​unable​ ​to
see​ ​reality​ ​as​ ​anything​ ​other​ ​than​ ​what​ ​their​ ​limited​ ​view​ ​or​ ​motivations​ ​make​ ​of​ ​it,​ ​which​ ​is​ ​not
even​ ​helpful​ ​for​ ​for​ ​the​ ​pursuit​ ​of​ ​their​ ​own​ ​self-interests.

2.)​ ​self-serving​ ​biases:​ ​We​ ​tend​ ​to​ ​overestimate​ ​our​ ​own​ ​strengths​ ​and​ ​merits​ ​while​ ​ignoring​ ​our
weaknesses​ ​and​ ​faults;​ ​it​ ​is​ ​easy​ ​to​ ​think​ ​that​ ​we​ ​are​ ​above​ ​average​ ​for​ ​no​ ​other​ ​reason​ ​than​ ​that
we​ ​are​ ​us;​ ​others​ ​tend​ ​to​ ​be​ ​blamed​ ​for​ ​our​ ​failures,​ ​and​ ​we​ ​tend​ ​to​ ​take​ ​all​ ​the​ ​credit​ ​for​ ​our
successes.​ ​This​ ​is​ ​a​ ​kind​ ​of​ ​double-standard​ ​we​ ​apply​ ​to​ ​ourselves.​ ​It​ ​prevents​ ​us​ ​from​ ​seeing
things​ ​as​ ​they​ ​are,​ ​because​ ​we​ ​distort​ ​our​ ​vision​ ​with​ ​our​ ​own​ ​self-delusions.

3.)​ ​Subjectivism:​ ​We​ ​are​ ​committing​ ​a​ ​subjectivist​ ​fallacy​ ​when​ ​we​ ​think​ ​that,​ ​just​ ​because​ ​we
believe​ ​something​ ​is​ ​true,​ ​it​ ​is​ ​true​ ​for​ ​no​ ​other​ ​reason​ ​that​ ​that​ ​we​ ​believe​ ​it.​ ​It​ ​is​ ​easy​ ​for​ ​us​ ​to
be​ ​deluded​ ​into​ ​thinking​ ​that​ ​our​ ​our​ ​beliefs​ ​are​ ​true​ ​just​ ​because​ ​they​ ​are​ ​ours,​ ​but​ ​this​ ​is
obviously​ ​misleading.​ ​A​ ​further​ ​problem​ ​arises​ ​in​ ​that​ ​our​ ​brains​ ​release​ ​dopamine​ ​which​ ​makes
us​ ​feel​ ​happy​ ​when​ ​we​ ​think​ ​we​ ​are​ ​right.​ ​If​