Top definition
An option-trap is when a person presented with options feels obliged to pick one of the options, as if they had no choice to ignore all of them. This phenomenon is almost always seen when two options are presented.

A simple example:

"Would you like to go to the movies or to a restaurant?"
This is a simple option-trap which is a question containing two options, and so the person being asked is likely to pick one of the options, where if they had been asked the same question containing only one of the options, they could then answer yes or no, but since two options are given some feel they must choose one or the other.

Another example: Republican or Democrat
A modern example of an option-trap is Republican or Democrat? Millions of people are presented with these two options every day through thousands of channels, such as news broadcasts, internet or in the public. The presenters of the two options "Republican or Democrat", do not give the audience a choice in the general narrative, everyone is either Republican, or they are Democrat. So as people get used to hearing the narrative, they pick one of the options, then defend it while disliking the other.

More option-trap examples:

Labour or Tory(In British Politics)
Conservative or Liberal
Rich or Poor
Peace or War

These option-traps are just some that people are constantly being exposed to, and so somehow they feel obliged to pick one or the other.
A salesman at this store nearly got me into an option-trap by asking me if I wanted the red one or the blue one!

The news in America sometimes catches me out with the Republican or Democrat option-trap!

I was thinking about whether I was conservative or liberal, and then I remembered that "consertive or liberal "is an option-trap so I forgot about it .
by ItHappenedSlowlyButSurely September 20, 2017