The “Malicious-Protestant” fallacy is similar to other more common fallacies such as Non-Sequitur, Ignoratio Elenchi and Missing the Point.
This fallacy is committed when one concludes or implies that a particular doctrine or practice is false, pagan, or evil because the name, circumstance, and history of that doctrine or practice/custom can be derived or associated to a pagan teaching or practice.
The Malicious-Protestant fallacy is a logical fallacy because the fact that the name, history, or circumstance of a doctrine or practice is factually or incidentally derived or associated with a pagan teaching or practice doesn’t logically mean that the doctrine or practice is also pagan. Hence, it is actually similar to Non-Sequitur (“It does not follow”) fallacy. In other words, the conclusion that “a Christian or Catholic teaching or practice is pagan” doesn’t follow from the premise that “it is associated to a pagan practice.”
I call this fallacy “Malicious-Protestant” for the following reasons. First, it is called “malicious” because to accuse something as pagan or evil one must first demonstrate that that thing is intrinsically or in itself pagan or evil. For instance, if a particular church teaches or allows divorce, we can rightly call, without committing fallacy, that that teaching is pagan and evil because divorce is intrinsically evil and against the will of God. Or if a particular church practices human sacrifice then we can call that practice evil since human sacrifice is intrinsically evil.
But to accuse something as pagan or evil simply because the name and circumstance of that practice is associated from pagan practice is simply malicious, dishonest, contrary to Christian charity, and is an insult to the Holy Spirit – the Spirit of truth.
For instance, to accuse that Christmas is pagan celebration because December 25 is the same day some pagan feasts are celebrated or to call Easter pagan because the name is derived from the name of a pagan god manifests ones malice, dishonesty, and corrupt mind. It is like calling your neighbor a prostitute just because you saw her walking around a night bar. This attitude is a grave sin prohibited in the Bible – remember the 9th Commandment!
Christian honesty, purity of mind, and charity requires one to be very strict in his reasoning. One must first prove that a practice is made in honor of a (non-existing) pagan god before one concludes that it is indeed pagan.
To prove that Malicious-Protestant fallacy is indeed fallacious, one only needs a counter example. Protestants use ring during marriage yet this is originally a pagan practice. Should we then call protestant marriages pagan? Of course not! To do otherwise is malicious and dishonest.
Another example is the name Saturday. Saturday originally means “Saturni dies” or “day of Saturn” in honor of the Roman god Saturn. Sunday also is “day of the Sun”, in honor of the Sun god. Should we then say that Seventh-day Adventists are worshipping the pagan god Saturn? Of course not! To say so is unfair, malicious, dishonest, and logically fallacious.
Second, this fallacy is called “protestant” because almost all Protestants use it repeatedly, and sadly, without the least discomfort of conscience.
So, the next time a protestant or non-Catholic commits this fallacy, tell him that he is committing the Malicious-Protestant fallacy and give him the link to this article.