Write an 800 – 1000 word paper analyzing one of the arguments for or against the moral permissibility of abortion. (Suggestion: Choose the argument that you disagree with.) Your paper must follow the instructions laid out here. Papers that do not follow the structure guidelines will not be accepted.
First, choose an argument you wish to discuss in your paper. (It helps if you disagree with the conclusion of the argument)
Thomson’s Violinist Argument
If it is permissible to unplug oneself from the violinist, then it is permissible to terminate a pregnancy that is the result of a rape.
It is permissible to unplug oneself from the violinist.
Therefore, it is permissible to terminate a pregnancy that is the result of rape.
Therefore, it is permissible to have an abortion in some cases.
The FLO Argument
If someone deprives something of a Future Like Ours, then they have done something immoral. Common causes of abortion involve someone depriving a fetus of a Future Like Ours. So, common causes of abortion involve someone doing something immoral.
Part 1 of your paper should introduce the argument you are going to be discussing. Layout the argument in standard premise/conclusion form (you may copy/paste the argument as stated here.
Part 2 of your paper should explain the argument. Explain any assumptions behind the premises, relevant moral principles, and give definitions. Explain each premise and say something about why the premise is plausible or why someone would believe the premise. After explaining each premise, explain how the premises together support the conclusion.
In part 3 choose a premise (NOT THE CONCLUSION) that you disagree with, think is false, or think that you can argue well against. Argue that this premise is false. Explain why you think the premise is incorrect. Explain how denying the premise allows you to avoid the conclusion of the argument.
Finish by discussing your argument in part 3 against the particular premise chosen. How might someone that disagrees with you might respond to your argument? Can their disagreement be addressed? How might you respond or persuade someone that disagrees with you on this point?
Please use normal margins, normal font, normal size. Please submit the paper in a .doc or .pdf format on Canvas. Please include a word count and your name at the top of your paper.
Rules of Writing: (Try to follow these rules to get a better grade!)
Say only true things. If you aren’t sure whether a sentence is true, go back to the material and determine its truth before putting it in your paper. If you cannot determine whether it is true, leave it out of your paper or hedge (say “it seems that”, but only when it really does seem that way).
Say things simply and clearly. Don’t try to be fancy or use obtuse philosophical-sounding jargon. All technical terms should be defined or explained.
Make sure you understand the material and that you write in a way that helps the professor understand your writing and to see that you understand the material thoroughly. (HINT: THIS IS THE MOST IMPORTANT PART OF WRITING A PAPER IN COLLEGE.) If you can figure out how to write in a way that shows your professor that you understand and have mastery of the course material, you will do well!
Be sure to structure your paper and be consistent in your use of words and sentence structure. Do not use stream of consciousness writing. Make sure you proofread after you have finished your first draft. Try to make your paper flow from section to section. Try to make the paper easy to read. Editing your paper should take you longer than writing your first draft.
For any student that wants feedback on their writing, please include “Feedback Please” at the top of your paper with the name and word count. I will try to give comments to help with your writing. If you desire further feedback and want to become a better writer, email me (before or after the paper is due) so that we can set up a meeting to discuss your paper and how you can improve. I also HIGHLY RECOMMEND that students take advantage of the writing center: https://www.sbcc.edu/clrc/writing_center/
Writing Assignment Rubric (1) (1)
Writing Assignment Rubric (1) (1)
Criteria Ratings Pts
This criterion is linked to a Learning OutcomeVeracity
Everything that is written is on topic, follows the prompt format, and is correct about the course content.
This criterion is linked to a Learning OutcomeUnderstanding
The content of the paper reflects the students understanding of the material. The student has explained the content in their own words and using examples that make it clear that they know the content and grasp how to present the content.
This criterion is linked to a Learning OutcomeClarity
The paper is written clearly. Key concepts are explained, there are few if any grammatical errors, and the student avoids unnecessary jargon. Things are stated in a simple and straightforward way that a high-school graduate could understand.
This criterion is linked to a Learning OutcomeStructure
The paper is well structured. It has a flow and is consistent in its word usage and pacing. The student recognizes what parts of the content are more important than others and spends more space and effort dealing with those aspects of the content.
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