QUESTION TEXT: Political theorist: Many people believe that the…
QUESTION TYPE: Principle – Strengthen
CONCLUSION: Judges shouldn’t be merciful based on motives.
REASONING: Motives are hard to be sure about. And even bad motives can be presented as good.
ANALYSIS: The wrong answer choices all miss the point: the argument is talking about how we should treat someone who claims to have had good motives.
The argument claims we should have no mercy, because its too hard to tell what motives are real and truly good.
The wrong answers all focus on what laws should exist. That’s completely different from how a judge should decide a case.
- This talks about which laws should exist. But the stimulus talks about what judges should do.
- CORRECT. That is what judges will be doing if they ignore motives. They will punish everyone who does something wrong, even those who really had motives that ought to have excused them. The author is fine with that.
- The argument isn’t talking about what should be allowed. It’s talking about how we should punish those acts that already aren’t allowed.
- We can enforce laws. If you’re punishing someone, you’re enforcing the law. The argument is just arguing we should ignore motives when we punish people.
- This has nothing to do with the argument, which is about whether we should consider motives.
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