Select two of the scenarios in the Applications list 12.2 (a.-ff.) at the end of Ch. 12 in The Art of Thinking.
Select two scenarios from the following list
12.2. Check each of the following arguments to be sure that it contains no hidden premises and, if it is a complex argument, that all parts are expressed. Revise each, as necessary, to make the expression complete. Then evaluate the argument and decide whether it is sound. Explain your judgment.
a. Having great wealth is a worthy goal because it is difficult to attain and many famous people have pursued it.
b. Low grades on a college transcript are a handicap in the job market, so teachers who grade harshly are doing students a disservice.
c. The Bible can’t be relevant to today’s problems; it was written many centuries ago and is filled with archaic phrasing.
d. It is dishonest to pretend to have knowledge one does not have, so plagiarism is more virtue than vice.
e. The credit card habit promotes careless spending, particularly among young people. Therefore, credit card companies should not be permitted to issue credit cards to anyone under age 21.
f. No one who ever attended this college achieved distinction after graduation. Marvin attends this college. Therefore, Marvin will not achieve distinction after graduation.
g. Drug dealing should not be a crime because it does not directly harm others or force them to harm themselves.
h. A mature person is self-directing, so parents who make all their children’s decisions for them are doing their offspring a disservice.
i. There’s no point in attending Professor Drone’s class; all he does is lecture in a boring monotone.
j. Power must be evil because it can corrupt people.
k. If the theory of evolution is true, as scientific evidence overwhelmingly suggests, a human being is nothing more than an ape.
l. Rock musicians are contributing to the decline of language by singing in a slurred, mumbling manner.
m. If emphasis on error paralyzes effort, this college is paying my English professor to make it impossible for me to learn English.
n. Nuclear power is a threat to world peace. Nuclear energy stations generate nuclear power. So nuclear energy stations are a threat to world peace.
o. Lew Fairman is the best candidate for governor because he is in favor of the death penalty.
p. All religious authorities are concerned about the dangers of nuclear war. All politicians are concerned about the dangers of nuclear war. Therefore, all politicians are religious authorities.
q. The government should undertake a comprehensive censorship program because censorship eliminates undesirable books and films from the market.
r. If the Social Security system is further weakened, the elderly will have to fear poverty. Therefore, if the Social Security system is not further weakened, the elderly will not have to fear poverty.
s. Challenging other people’s opinions is a sign of intolerance, so debating courses have no place on a college campus.
t. It’s ridiculous to think that there will be fewer deaths if we ban handguns. Handguns don’t kill people; people kill people.
u. The antiabortionists say that the fetus is human, but they have not proved it. Therefore, they have no reasonable basis for opposing abortion.
v. We must either defeat communism or be defeated by it. To be defeated by communism is unthinkable. Therefore, we must defeat communism.
w. There is no way that anyone can ever deserve to live better than her or his neighbors, so capitalism is an immoral economic system.
x. If an expectant mother drinks, smokes, takes drugs, or fails to get proper rest, she may damage her unborn child. Therefore, if an expectant mother does these things and her child is born with a defect or ailment that can be traced to them, the mother should face criminal charges.
y. Custom is a form of folk wisdom. In some parts of the world, it is customary for “bride buyers” to buy (or sometimes kidnap) young women from their parents and sell them to men looking for wives. Even though we might find this practice distasteful, it would be morally wrong for us to object to others’ practicing it.
z. Critical thinking has no application to movies because movies are an art form rather than an attempt to persuade.
aa. Conservatism is based upon hatred of the poor and I challenge anyone to disprove this fact.
bb. We shouldn’t talk about religious differences lest some people be offended.
cc. Sociologists are social scientists. Psychologists are social scientists. Therefore, sociologists are psychologists.
dd. Ladies and gentlemen of the jury, you cannot convict my client of the brutal murder with which he has been charged. He has fought all his adult life to protect endangered species and received awards for his charitable contributions.
ee. If I win the lottery, I’ll pay all my bills. Therefore, if I pay all my bills, I’ll win the lottery.
ff. You ask whether I will vote to repeal the Affordable Health Care Act. There is no vote more important at this time than that very vote. Our fiscal welfare for years to come, not to mention the security of our elder citizens, will depend on every member of Congress taking a stand based on his or her beliefs.
Apply the following in a paper of 600 to 800 words for each scenario:
Evaluate each argument, using the four-step process described on pp. 197-198, regarding soundness of reasoning (truth and validity).
Explain your assessment, and add alternative argumentation where necessary.
Format your assignment according to appropriate course level APA guidelines.
Submit your assignment to the Assignment Files tab.