Topics for your Essay, Choose A or B
Essay Length tips–To answer these topics completely, it takes about 2 pages – 8-10 paragraphs. Use the topic questions and the scoring rubric to see if your draft responds fully to all parts of the question. A complete thoughtful answer is more important than word count.
Topic A: What is the fallacy of Straw Man? How is it different than simply disagreeing with someone elseâ€™s point of view?
Use the material in Vaughn’s book to help you give a detailed explanation of what the mistake in a Straw Man is. To demonstrate your understanding and to teach the idea to the rest of the class, provide a relevant real-life example of the logical mistake. (You MAY use an outside source to help you present your example; be sure to summarize or paraphrase, cite, and use announcing verbs.) Choose carefully – consider whether your example does a good job of illustrating a Straw Man. Compare it to similar fallacies, and show why your example is a Straw Man rather than another fallacy like an Appeal to the Person. Your discussion of your example should be detailed so that readers can evaluate the fallacy. Argue the case for why your example is an example of Straw Man.
Topic B: Is it morally permissible to believe in God just because it is to your practical advantage to believe? Why or why not? Use the material in Vaughn’s book to help you explain how Pascal argues for belief in God. Explain the strengths and weaknesses of other thinkers have identified in his reasoning.
What does the argument against believing in God without sufficient evidence look like? Is it plausible that God would look kindly on atheists and agnostics to because they refuse to believe without evidence? After all, aren’t they simply using God’s gift of reason to arrive at their decision?