The Holocaust (logical) fallacy

This might go in general questions, but I assume it will get sidetracked, so I’m putting it here.

What is the logical fallacy that is probably some subset of appeal to authority, where a person who has been through some great trauma or act of bravery, whether it has anything to do with the issue at hand or not, is never to be questioned?

I posted a bit on another thread about Bruno Bettelheim and his “refrigerator mother” theory of autism.

Something I didn’t post on the other thread was that Bettelheim was a concentration camp survivor, and this was frequently invoked around the time his theory was finally being debunked. It went something like “He knows about suffering, so he understands the suffering of these children.” There’s a little question begging there, in that no one has demonstrated the children ARE suffering (or were, before they were subjected to his therapy).

I’ve seen this in other contexts, where suffering is supposed to grant wisdom, and in a spiritual paradigm, it might, but that doesn’t carry over to the paradigm of logic. The TV was still full of commercials of vets who had lost a limb talking about how we needed to stay in Iraq and finish what we started, c. 2006-8. They weren’t necessarily anymore knowledgeable of the politics of conflict that any random vet, but having lost a limb somehow added weight to their argument (?) If anything, they were less trustworthy, because one would assume their opinion would be colored by personal anger-- but I guess we weren’t expected to think that far.

Anyway, does this have a name, or is it just a special case of “appeal to authority” that you have to explain?

I don’t think there’s any logical fallacy here. We’re not reasoning that, because Joe lost a limb in Iraq, therefore his views on Iraq are better informed/wiser than those of someone who did not lose a limb.

Rather, I think the thought process is that because of Joe’s suffering and sacrifice and the associated emotional investment he has in his views about Iraq, it would be unfair to Joe/oppressive to Joe/pointless to challenge/attack/reason against Joe’s views. It will be hard for Joe to change his mind, and attempts to make him do so will only increase his unhappiness. And hasn’t he suffered enough?

Therefore we note Joe’s views, note his emotional investment in those views, note the reason fro that emotional investment, and move on.

Appeal to emotion.

Appeal to Emotional Authority?

Recent thread on this question.

What I took from that thread was that there was no formal fallacy, but that this kind of argument usually involves an unstated false premise that personal experience, in particular an emotional or traumatic experience, imparts expertise or authority. In fact, such an experience seems likely to compromise one’s objectivity.

On the other hand, if we’re talking about one peson denying that the Holocaust ever happened, when another person actually experienced it first hand — then that’s not compromised objectivity, it’s a witness statement.

I heard it said once that the chicken has an interest in the concept of breakfast, but the pig is committed to the idea of breakfast.