Please see attached for assignment directions and the attachment that was turned in as Part I which is needed for this assignment. ****This assignment is ONLY for Part 2- Synthesizing and Writing.****Please follow all directions needed to complete this assignment and please…NO PLAGIARISM!
phi210_critical_thinking_assignment_1.doc

phi210_critical_thinking_assignment_1.2_instructions_for_week_4.docx

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Running head: CONFLICTING VIEWPOINTS ESSAY
Conflicting Viewpoints Essay
Student: Brenda W. Frye
Course: PHI210 Critical Thinking
Assignment 1.1
January 8, 2019
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CONFLICTING VIEWPOINTS ESSAY
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Conflicting Viewpoints Essay
Should More Gun Control Laws be enacted?
Gun control refers to the legal measures which are in place to ensure that people who
own guns are qualified to do so without instigating potential harm to other people in the
community. It is logical that people might need guns and knowledge on the correct use of the
weapons so that they can protect themselves and their families from criminals. It is also legal as
per the Second Amendment of the U.S. Constitution. However, the rampant random shootings
which have caused the death of many innocent people in gatherings show how the existing gun
control laws are loose. For this reason, the issue of gun control continues to be a controversial
one in the United States as the country has the highest number of gun owners in the world. The
idea that ordinary citizens have access to guns and it is highly unclear whether such citizens may
suffer mental illness after ownership poses a significant threat to the communities. I believe that
more gun control laws should be enacted to ascertain safety in American society as proper
scrutiny and screening measures are implemented in the context of gun ownership. However, it is
also critical to listen to those who are against the enactment of more gun control laws so that one
can and understand their perspectives. Although I do not endorse their position, there are a few
sensible reasons for not enacting more gun control laws, and they should be well-explored to
provide a deep understanding of the matter.
The first argument is that the Second Amendment of the U.S. Constitution protects
individual gun ownership (ProCon.Org, 2019). The interesting thing about this view is that the
law allows an individual to own a gun for self-defense purposes. Therefore, he or she is not
vulnerable to criminal threats or activities in his or her environment. It is possible that one might
be in a difficult position with a criminal or a mentally ill person and quick access to help might
CONFLICTING VIEWPOINTS ESSAY
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be unattainable at that point. Gun ownership is an individual right in the same way that there are
individual rights of free speech, freedom of religion, freedom of the press and many
others(ProCon.Org, 2019). If I believe this view, I will notice that one needs to be ready for any
attack in any place because crimes such as homicides, kidnapping, and rape are common
according to police reports. Thus, it is better to safe than to be sorry. The idea of rights to
individual gun ownership might be true because people need to feel safe anywhere and they
should take all measures to have peace of mind in this sense.
The second argument is that gun control laws do not deter crime but gun ownership
deters does (ProCon.Org, 2019). The interesting thing about this view is that, according to a
2013 study, the rate of crime increased in states which implemented restrictions on gun
ownership and use while the crime rate decreased in the states which depicted a considerable
increase in gun ownership in the 20th century (ProCon.Org, 2019). These findings suggest that
strict gun control laws cannot be effective in combating crime. Therefore, if I believe this view, I
would observe that gun ownership is a necessity and it instills fear among criminals and potential
criminals such that they refrain from criminal activities because they might be injured or killed
by individuals. This idea might be true because it eliminates ignorance and it may promote both
caution and safety.
The third argument is that gun control laws give too much power to the government and
may result in government tyranny and the government taking away all guns from (ProCon.Org,
2019). According to the findings from the 2013 Pew Research study, over half of the people
surveyed believed that strict gun control laws would give the government excessive power that
would subjugate the citizens. The interesting thing about this view is that it justifies the Second
Amendment as it gives a clear understanding why the Founding Fathers wrote it. If I believed
CONFLICTING VIEWPOINTS ESSAY
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this view, I would notice that the Founding Fathers wanted the people to enjoy a sense of
freedom so they set the precedence that should not be overturned (ProCon.Org, 2019). The idea
of more gun control laws enabling tyranny is a possibility that would diminish the essence of
democracy in America.
In a nutshell, these three points introduce different perspectives which are sensible and
can, therefore, make an individual think otherwise regarding the issue of adding more gun
control laws. They present the logic behind leaving the existing laws as they are and focusing on
more effective methods of combating crime. When the government refrains from adding more
gun control laws, it upholds the rights of the individuals as per the Second Amendment of the
U.S. Constitution, and it justifies America as a democratic entity. It might be difficult to agree
with other arguments but the three trigger one’s critical thinking. Nevertheless, I still stand firm
with my argument which supports the enactment of more gun control laws as I believe innocent
people are still at risk when we consider gun ownership by mentally-ill people and felons. I think
that laws can be enacted in ways that protect individual rights.
CONFLICTING VIEWPOINTS ESSAY
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Reference
ProCon.Org. (2019). Should More Gun Control Laws Be Enacted? ProCon.Org. Retrieved from
https://gun-control.procon.org/
Assignment 1.2: Conflicting Viewpoints Essay Part II
Synthesizing and Writing
When looking for information about a particular issue, how often do you try to resist biases
toward your own point of view? This assignment asks you to engage in this aspect of critical
thinking.
The assignment is divided into two (2) parts.
For Part I of the assignment (due Week 2), you read a book excerpt about critical thinking
processes, reviewed the Procon.org Website in order to gather information, and engaged in
prewriting to examine your thoughts.
* Remember that in the Week 2 Discussion, you examined the biases discussed in Chapter 2 of
the webtext.
In Part II of the assignment (due Week 4), you will write a paper to synthesize your ideas.
Part II Writing
Write at three to four (3-4) page paper in which you:
1. State your position on the topic you selected for Assignment 1.1.
2. Identify (3) three premises (reasons) from the Procon.org website that support your position
and explain why you selected these specific reasons.
3. Explain your answers to the believing questions about the three (3) premises opposing your
position from the Procon.org website.
4. Examine at least two (2) types of biases that you likely experienced as you evaluated the
premises for and against your position.
5. Discuss the effects of your own enculturation or group identification that may have influenced
your biases.
6. Discuss whether or not your thinking about the topic has changed after playing the Believing
Game, even if your position on the issue has stayed the same.
The paper should follow guidelines for clear and organized writing:



Include an introductory paragraph and concluding paragraph.
Address main ideas in body paragraphs with a topic sentence and supporting sentences.
Adhere to standard rules of English grammar, punctuation, mechanics, and spelling.
Your assignment must follow these formatting requirements:


This course requires use of Strayer Writing Standards (SWS). The format is different than
other Strayer University courses. Please take a moment to review the SWS
documentation for details.
Based on the guidelines in SWS, “A well-researched assignment has at least as many
sources as pages.” Since this assignment requires you to write at least 3-4 pages, you
should include at least 3-4 references.
The specific course learning outcomes associated with this assignment are:



Identify the informal fallacies, assumptions, and biases involved in manipulative appeals
and abuses of language.
Create written work utilizing the concepts of critical thinking.
Use technology and information resources to research issues in critical thinking skills and
informal logic.

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