straw man

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straw man

n.
1. An argument or opponent set up so as to be easily refuted or defeated.
2. Law See dummy.

[From the making of sham human figures out of bundles of straw, as for use as scarecrows or practice targets .]

straw man

n
1. (Crafts) a figure of a man made from straw
2. a variant of man of straw

straw′ man′


n.
1. a person whose function is only to cover another's activities; front.
2. a conveniently weak or innocuous person, object, or issue used as a seeming adversary or argument.
[1895–1900]
ThesaurusAntonymsRelated WordsSynonymsLegend:
Noun1.straw man - a person used as a cover for some questionable activitystraw man - a person used as a cover for some questionable activity
beguiler, cheater, deceiver, trickster, slicker, cheat - someone who leads you to believe something that is not true
2.straw man - a weak or sham argument set up to be easily refuted
specious argument - an argument that appears good at first view but is really fallacious
3.straw man - an effigy in the shape of a man to frighten birds away from seedsstraw man - an effigy in the shape of a man to frighten birds away from seeds
effigy, simulacrum, image - a representation of a person (especially in the form of sculpture); "the coin bears an effigy of Lincoln"; "the emperor's tomb had his image carved in stone"
Translations
References in periodicals archive ?
These critiques and interrogations are neither careerist nor dependent upon strawman arguments.
He does this by employing a very well known rhetorical trick, the so-called Gish Gallop, designed to overcome an opponent by presenting a string of superficially plausible half-truths and strawman arguments that are intended to lead the unwary reader uncritically to accept an untruth that supports his position.
In both cases, I found myself confronting an interesting situation: the necessity of the gun control crowd to fight against strawman arguments.