QUESTION TEXT: Principle: The government should not prevent…
QUESTION TYPE: Principle – Application
PRINCIPLE: Government right to prevent + believe true ➞ belief harmful to people
belief not harmful➞ government right to prevent or belief true
APPLICATION: Government was wrong to prevent Calista from expressing her belief
(The belief was that excessive use of cell phones has contributed to a slight increase in the cancer rate over the last two years)
ANALYSIS: We’re trying to prove “
government right to prevent true belief”. To do that, we need the sufficient condition above: “ belief not harmful”. The belief also has to be true, because the statement only refers to true beliefs.
Note that this stem is both “justify” and “application”. On balance, I think “application” better fits.
- This is irrelevant. The stimulus is only about whether Calista’s belief is harmful or not. Or whether it’s true. This government research doesn’t impact either, because it doesn’t conclude anything about truth or harm.
- CORRECT. This shows that Calista’s belief was true, and not harmful. Those are the two things we need to conclude that the government shouldn’t restrict her belief.
- This refers to the wrong thing. The principle talked about whether a belief was harmful. This is about whether Calista thinks a belief is harmful. Those aren’t the same thing: the principle is about the fact that a belief is harmless, not the belief that a belief is harmless.
- This weakens Calista’s case. We’re trying to show that her belief is not harmful. This answer can only help show that a belief is harmful.
- This talks about what people would do. But the only relevant question is whether hearing Calista’s belief helps or harms people. We don’t know if reducing cell phones helps or hurts people.
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