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Dobson: Some historians claim that the people
who built a ring of stones thousands of years ago
in Britain were knowledgeable about celestial
events. The ground for this claim is that two of the
stones determine a line pointing directly to the
position of the sun at sunrise at the spring
equinox. There are many stones in the ring,
however, so the chance that one pair will point in
a celestially significant direction is large.
Therefore, the people who built the ring were not
knowledgeable about celestial events.
Which one of the following is an error of reasoning
in DobsonтАЩs argument?
(A) The failure of cited evidence to establish a
statement is taken as evidence that that
statement is false.
(B) DobsonтАЩs conclusion logically contradicts some
of the evidence presented in support of it.
(C) Statements that absolutely establish DobsonтАЩs
conclusion are treated as if they merely give
some support to that conclusion.
(D) Something that is merely a matter of opinion is
treated as if it were subject to verification as a
matter of fact.
(E) DobsonтАЩs drawing the conclusion relies on
interpreting a key term in two different ways.
Hesitated between A and D but final answer would be D. The fact that there are many stones, combined with the opinion that 2 of them pointing to a celestial direction is being very likely is treated as a fact that those who built the stones were not that knowledgeable after all. Relatively difficult.