As you formulate an argument, you can use your computer to create a table or chart that organizes all the arguments against your position. Using the Table menu in your word-processing program, create a two column table. Label the first column “Opposing Arguments” and the second column “Refutations.” List the arguments against your position in the first column and your refutations of these arguments in the second column. When you are finished, delete the weakest opposing arguments. When you write your essay, discuss only those opposing arguments and refutations that remain.
Choose one of the following five statements, and list the arguments in favor of it. Then, list the arguments against it. Finally, choose one position (pro or con), and write a paragraph or two supporting it. Be sure to refute the arguments against your position.
- Public school students who participate in extracurricular activities should have to submit to random drug tests.
- The federal government should limit the amount of violence shown on television.
- A couple applying for a marriage license should be required to take AIDS tests.
- Retirees making more than $50,000 a year should not be eligible for Social Security benefits.
- Colleges and universities should provide free daycare for students’ children.
B) Using Evidence Effectively
1) Supporting Your Argument