“Many ‘natural’ things are also considered ‘good’, and this can bias our thinking; but naturalness itself doesn’t make something good or bad.”Jesse Richardson, Andy Smith, Som Meaden, and Flip Creative, The School of Thought.
The New All Natural Craze
The United States is notorious for using processed and mass-produced products. Many claim that nothing is original or natural anymore in our Western culture. These criticisms have lead to the popularity of natural products and has gone as far as to promote anti-vaxxing, alternative medicine, and hallucinogens. Below you will see that just because something is natural that doesn’t mean that it is good.
The Appeal to Nature Fallacy
The legalization of marijuana has been a popular debate topic this decade. Most of the arguments that are pro-legalization argue that the drug is not bad for you because it is natural. Major news outlet Huffington Post used this argument back in 2013 in their list about why marijuana should be legal:
“We’ve gathered up eight reasons why those who are still on the fence about the natural plant should possibly reconsider their feelings.”Renee Jacques, Huffington Post
The above quote uses natural as reasoning and therefore uses the appeal to nature fallacy. This fallacy happens when one argues that just because something is natural, that it is good. That argument is incorrect because many things can be natural but NOT be good. For example, murder may be natural, but most of us would agree that it is bad!
Why Does This Matter?
Many people will try to convince you that something is good for you because it is natural. By recognizing this fallacy, you will be better equipped not to fall for it. On the other hand, if you are passionate about something that is natural, you can find a better argument for your claim! Things that are natural aren’t bad, but they aren’t necessarily good.