QUESTION TEXT: Government official: Although the determination…
QUESTION TYPE: Principle–Justify
CONCLUSION: The government shouldn’t rebuild the trails that were destroyed by a landslide.
REASONING: Future landslides could hurt people.
ANALYSIS: Principle questions test your ability to separate facts from morality. You can’t assume any moral principles on the LSAT, even ones as commonly accepted as “it is a bad thing for people to die”.
There are good reasons for this. Any action carries risks, even risk of death. That’s not necessarily a reason to avoid doing something. Maybe the benefits outweigh the risk. In the face of risks, we need to explicitly state the principles that govern our choices.
To strengthen this argument, we should say that the government shouldn’t support construction where there is a risk of death by landslide.
- The argument did not say that the government should ban the community from rebuilding. The conclusion is only that the government itself shouldn’t help.
- This contradicts the argument. We know the community is determined to rebuild. So according to this principle, the government should help. But the argument’s conclusion was that the government should not help.
- This has no effect. The community is committed, so they meet the necessary condition for government assistance. So this can’t prove that the government should not assist.
- CORRECT. This proves the conclusion. We know that there is a risk of serious injury from landslides. This tells us that the government therefore shouldn’t assist in trail building.
- The stimulus did not say the government should discourage the residents from building the trail. Instead, the conclusion is merely that the government itself shouldn’t build a trail.
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