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Words used in the public realm often have slippery definitions that change with time. For example, terms like feminist and elite are used proudly by some but insultingly by others. Definitional arguments are particularly powerful in that they help us to recognize that classifications change over time and are the result of cultural, social, and political forces that may come and go. Definitions are not natural ¨C societies and individuals create them. Steps: Pick a term/symbol/image to define. (See below for examples.) Note: The term must be arguable. This means that you will be able to find credible sources that disagree with your definition. For example, arguing that racism should include racist comments directed toward Mexican-Americans does not meet the requirements for this assignment, because that is already the legal, commonly-held definition and there isn¡¯t a rational counter argument. Make an argument that rests on the definition of your term. There are two big moves in this paper: you need to both define a key term and build an argument around that term. For example, Abortion should/should not be illegal is not a good thesis for this essay, because although abortion is a controversial topic, none of those words are controversial (we all agree on what abortion and illegal mean). However, Abortion should/should not be illegal because it does/does not end a human life could work well; you would then need to define human life and when it begins before making your point that because of this, laws should or shouldn¡¯t be changed. Similarly, A sport is¡­. is not an argument in and of itself. Instead, you could argue that NASCAR is/is not a sport; you would then need to define sport and show how NASCAR meets that definition. Research your term. Start with the dictionary (the OED is a great source). Then look at op-eds and reliable blogs. Use the Valley Library. Remember to look for sources that agree and disagree with you. Create your definition, an argument that rests on that definition, and start writing. Your paper should include: - Awareness of a specific audience and publication for which you will be writing and consideration of how your identification of that audience informs your definitional argument - A strong and engaging introduction that grabs the reader¡¯s interest - Clear thesis (claim and reason) involving a matter of definition - General definition of key term that is acceptable to readers ¨C do more than quote the dictionary - Support/explanation/defense of the terms of the definition ¨C why is this a good definition? - Support of claim in terms of the definition (does the claim meet the criteria set out in the definition? compare/contrast claim and definition) - Consideration of alternative views and counterarguments, such as any objections that a reader might have to claim, criteria, or evidence, or the way the definition is formulated (rebuttals) - A conclusion of your argument that explains the implications of your definitional argument (so what? who cares? what would happen if your definition were adopted?) - Credible sources - Ideas from at least 3 credible sources (no Wikipedia) must be incorporated into your essay - At least two of these must be op-eds or credible blogs - Make sure to introduce the author/site and state why he/she/it is relevant to your argument - In-text citations for every quote, fact, and reference - Correct page length: 3-4 pages, double-spaced, Times New Roman, 12-point font Rhetorical Analysis - When you are finished writing your paper, you will do a write-up that explains some of your rhetorical strategies. Include answers to the following questions: - Length: At least ½ a page, typed. What publication did you pick to write for and why? Who is the audience for this publication? How did you tailor your essay so that it would match the publication¡¯s style and expectations? What methods of definition did you use (historical, analogy, etc.)? Why was this a good choice for you audience? What went well for you in this essay? What was difficult? Examples of the different types of definitional arguments These are questions that could lead to definitional claims. For example, Is rap poetry? is not a thesis, but your answer to that question could become a thesis with a claim and a reason. Questions related to genus: - Is assisting in suicide a crime? - Is NASCAR a sport? - Is rap poetry? - Does X fit into the genus Y? (Insert your own choice of topic here) Questions related to species (a more specific category): - Is marijuana a relatively harmless drug or a dangerous, addictive one? - Is Saudi Arabia an ally or an opponent of the US? - Is TV\\\\\\\'s \\\\\\\"Survivor\\\\\\\" a reality show or a game show? - Is X a Y or a Z? (Again, insert your own choices here) Questions related to conditions: - Should a woman be held to the same physical requirements as a man in order to join the army? - Should everyone pay the same percentage of their income in taxes, regardless what that income is? - Are high scores on the SATs a fair condition for entrance into universities? - Must X occur in order for Y? (Your own choices go here ¨C see EAR pg. 258 for more examples) Questions related to the fulfillment of conditions: - Should \\\\\\\"dead languages\\\\\\\" like Greek and Latin count towards the foreign language requirement? - Should academic scholarships count as taxable income? - Should nontraditional educational experiences, such as semesters abroad and internships, count for college credit? - Should X be counted as Y for the purposes of Z? (Your own choices here ¨C see EAR pg. 258 for more examples) Questions related to the membership in a named class: - Is any writer today in a class with William Shakespeare, John Milton, Jane Austen, and/or John Steinbeck? - Is any musician today in a class with Elvis, Bob Dylan, the Beatles, and/or Fleetwood Mac? - Is any actor today in a class with Jimmy Stewart, Clark Gable, Katherine Hepburn, and/or Elizabeth Taylor? - Is any recent president in a class with Washington, Lincoln, and/or Roosevelt? - Does X deserve the status of Y? (Insert your own choices here) source..
WHY POT IS A RELATIVELY HARMLESS DRUG Name: Course title: Professor: Institution: Date Due: Despite the fact that pot is the most condemned plant on earth, it is not strongly harmful. Rather, it can be considered as relatively harmless. The word relative here is used to portray that, although there would be some harm derived from it, this harm could not be compared to that derived from such substances as tobacco, cigarettes, alcohol or caffeine. There is virtually no evidence linking deaths to pot use or overdose. Rather, Marijuana has been greatly associated with medical and social benefits such as inhibiting HIVs, reducing blood pressure, glaucoma treatments, pain alleviations and cancer suppression. Medical pot is the use of cannabis or pot plant as an herbal therapy or antiemetic. I do not understand why individuals, organizations, and the governments should keep on condemning and outlawing the plant yet it has been useful for medical and health purposes since time immemorial. In fact, early writings from ancient India portray the psychoactive properties found in pot plant. Countries that have realized the medical significance of this substance such as Canada and Australia have allowed it to be used for treating patients. In Canada, patients are now allowed to possess the substance while some famers are licensed to cultivate it in small or large scale. It was just recent when politicians in Australia voted to allow doctors use the substance where they deemed to be appropriate in medical conditions (Cravatt et al, 2004). In support of this opinion, studies have identified a group of endo-cannabinoids responsible for activating cannabinoid receptors (Bisogno, 2005). These and many other discoveries of chemicals present in pot plant have resulted into the emergency of various CB receptor protagonists and antagonists plus the studies that have confirmed the therapeutic potential for this cannabis plant. Six studies that were sponsored by U.S back in 1980s found out that smoking bhang reduced pain, nausea, and glaucoma. Fratello (2013) observes that many patients, families and doctors have witnessed the medical benefits accrued from cannabis. A lot more doctors, patients and researchers have testified and contributed to journals and books on the medical usefulness of this plant. Therefore, pot could be considered as particularly not harmful. The present regulation regarding marijuana use seems to deprive patients and doctors autonomy of pot use for medical purposes. Instead, they categorize patients as criminals and such laws should be changed. Researchers should be free to conduct their studies regarding the medical potential of pot since both the patients, and doctors could only benefit from new information gained from such studies. The political controversy surrounding marijuana use ought not to creep into the doctor’s premises and patients homes or hospital rooms. The generals in this war should desist from taking part in this w...
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