QUESTION TEXT: Ethicist: Robert Gillette has argued that because…
QUESTION TYPE: Identify The Conclusion
CONCLUSION: Gillette’s argument isn’t convincing.
REASONING: Gillette pointed out some benefits to knowing genetics. But Gillette ignores the fact that knowledge of the human genome might be harmful.
ANALYSIS: On “identify the conclusion” questions, you don’t need to consider whether the argument is good or bad. You just need to identify what the author is saying.
The author thinks Gillette is wrong. The “however, because” indicates this conclusion. What comes before the “however” is the conclusion, and what comes after “because” is the evidence.
Note that the ethicist has not said whether she thinks genetic research is a bad idea. She’s merely pointing out that Gillette’s argument is unconvincing. You can disagree with an argument without believing in the opposite conclusion.
- The ethicist didn’t even say this. She may agree with Gillette that knowledge of the genetic code will cure genetic disorders.
- The fact in this answer is just evidence.
The author says this knowledge is something Gillette fails to consider, and Gillette is not persuasive because he fails to consider it.
- The ethicist did not say whether we shouldn’t pursue genetic research. She just said Gillette’s conclusion is not supported.
The ethicist thinks there is an absence of evidence that genetic research is good. But that doesn’t mean she thinks there is definitive evidence that it is a bad thing. She may simply be undecided on its benefits.
- Same as A. The ethicist didn’t say Gillette is wrong about genetic disorders. Maybe mapping the genome will prevent 3,000 disorders, but harm us in other ways.
- CORRECT. The “however, because” indicates this is the conclusion. If “however” is in the middle of a sentence, then whatever comes before the however is usually the conclusion.
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