Appeal to age

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Not to be confused with Appeal to ancient wisdom -- when one appeals to "knowledge" of ancient cultures instead of demonstrable facts.

An appeal to age is a fallacy in which someone's age is cited as evidence for their position being true/false. It is a subset of the genetic fallacy, and if someone's age is used against their position, it is an argumentum ad hominem (which is also a subset of a genetic fallacy).

Usually it is used to support the arguments of people who are older, and discredit arguments of younger people.


P1: X holds position Y.
P2: X is old/young.
P3: If someone is old/young, their position is false.
C: Y is false.


Although someone who is older is generally wiser and more knowledgeable, old/young people can be wrong/right. Someone who is old can still believe in bullshit, and someone who is young can still make a sound argument.[note 1]


  • "I've studied theology for many years, and have concluded that there is a God."
  • "You're only 13, so you can't say that creationism is false."
  • "You think parents shouldn't beat their kids? Back in my day, we got the belt! You Millennials/Gen Z kids are so entitled!"
  • "You're just a kid."
  • "American customary measurement system has been around since the Romans, unlike the johnny-come-lately Metric system, so it is proven and better!"
  • "Respect your elders."

See also[edit]