SGA Senate meets to discuss logical fallacies, legislative debate

The Student Senate met last Monday to discuss a variety of bills that were passed. (Scott Young/The Chanticleer)The Student Senate met last Monday to discuss a variety of bills that were passed. (Scott Young/The Chanticleer)

Madison Bailey, Correspondent

The Jacksonville State University Student Senate gathered virtually for an informal meeting on Monday, September 14.

Vice President of Student Senate Cindy Danini gave a presentation on common types of logical fallacies.

“My goal with the presentation was to help the senators understand common arguments that are easily refuted,” said Danini. “I’m hoping that this will help everyone develop their arguments as well as make them more aware of logical fallacies someone may present in debate.”

Danini acknowledged Senator Adam McNeal and gave him credit for his assistance in finding research on logical fallacies and creating the presentation. McNeal feels strongly about understanding logical fallacies for legislative purposes as well as reasons outside of debating.

“Knowing about logical fallacies is a useful skill both in debate and everyday life,” said McNeal. “Whether it’s discussing where to eat for dinner or politics, understanding and being able to identify logical fallacies will make sure your reasoning is rock solid.”

McNeal notes that many people, whether it be in debates or normal conversation, have a tendency to use logical fallacies without even realizing it.

“Being able to identify and counter [logical fallacies] can help immensely in strengthening your own argument,” he said. “Additionally, by understanding logical fallacies, you can avoid using them yourself – preventing the argument from being derailed and keeping the focus of the debate on the merits of the idea being presented.”

Senator Matt Reed believes he can benefit from the presentation by utilizing what he learned and applying it to future senate debates.

“Understanding logical fallacies helps us to not only formulate stronger arguments for our legislation, but also to help understand how to navigate opposing legislation,” said Reed. “It strengthens the entire legislative process and forces more sound legislation into passage.”

Other business

Assistant Dean of Students Veronica Bjorkman thanked the Student Senate for their assistance with J-Week and the Cocky Cares initiative. 

“You have all been fantastic leaders, and I truly appreciate students wearing many hats, just as administrators and faculty and staff are wearing many hats during these challenging times,” said Bjorkman. “Know that your work never goes unnoticed and that I’m super impressed and appreciative of it.”

Danini noted that there are two open Student Senate seats and encouraged senators to reach out to students they believe would enjoy and do well in the Senate. 

Danini also reminded the student senators to pick up their Student Senate binders and to send in their required volunteer hours so it can be officially documented. 

The Student Senate has not had an opportunity to gather for an in-person meeting this semester. JSU is currently at “Precaution Level 3,” which is outlined in the Student Affairs COVID-19 Response Policy. In-person activities for all organizations are limited to groups of 20 people or less.

In accordance with this policy, the Student Senate will continue to meet virtually at 6:00 p.m. next Monday, Sept. 21.

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