QUESTION TEXT: Editorial: The threat of harsh punishment for…
QUESTION TYPE: Necessary Assumption
CONCLUSION: Punishing crime more harshly might cause an increase in our tendency to ignore others’ welfare.
REASONING: Harsh punishment ➞ less guilt ➞ more transgressions
ANALYSIS: The argument has shown that threat of harsh punishment leads to more transgressions. But that might not be the same as the same as ignoring the welfare of others.
- If legal penalties do determine the morality of an action, this argument is still good. That has nothing to do with ignoring the welfare of others.
- CORRECT. The argument has proven that harsh punishments lead to transgressions. But if transgressions can’t make us ignore the welfare of others then the conclusion is unsupported.
- The argument didn’t talk about being concerned for your own well being.
- The argument is claiming that harsh punishment will actually lead to more transgressions. The argument would be stronger if harsh punishment never deterred anything.
- The argument wouldn’t be hurt if a handful of people are complete psychopaths and never feel shame.
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