Cassandra Young's Argument Analysis

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When questions of ethics and morality are brought up for discussion they can be immensely difficult to mediate. What is perceived as ethically “right” to one person may be considered “wrong” to another. It is part of human nature to evaluate issues from a subjective standpoint, as opinions and prioritization of values vary on an individual level. This difference of personal beliefs, therefore, often leads to the existence of biased arguments. Due to this, it is essential for any argument to follow a set of ethical criteria in order to be considered valid and effective. An editorial published in The Columbus Dispatch serves as an adequate example to demonstrate the necessity of these principles.
Cassandra Young wrote an editorial that was featured
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She asserts that, opinions of morality and fairness aside, the differential cost between testing versus not testing is insubstantial. Both Arizona and Florida have enacted similar policies in the past, and Young uses their results as evidence to support her argument. Out of “87,000 welfare applicants” in Arizona, Young claims, “only one test came back positive—a whopping $560 in savings for the state” (Young). Here the author of the editorial is using factual evidence to appeal to the reader logically. Her argument is that large scale drug testing is ineffective and an economic waste. She goes on to say that “in a four-month testing period in Florida, 2.6 percent of applicants tested positive, saving the state less than the cost of the tests” (Young). While both pieces of information pertain to her argument and give the audience a better understanding of why she believes drug-testing should not be written into legislature, neither are given proper credit. No secondary sources are cited as a reference to prove the information’s credibility. When evaluating an argument’s effectiveness, due credit to outside sources is absolutely necessary. Without it, there is no telling whether the data has been falsified by the person making the argument in order to sway their target audience. It is evident from the lack of citations that Young’s article does not…show more content…
“We also should question the constitutionality of drug testing to receive only certain benefits,” Young muses, because in her opinion this method “targets only certain groups of people” (Young). She also goes on to compare the process of applying for college grants to the process of applying for food stamps, a comparison that might seem too far-fetched to some. Furthermore, the editorial loses some of its strength with a series of questions to which there is no definitive answer. Questions like “is it moral to deny someone with a disease” and “should we be drug-testing corporate officers” are never fully addressed, and she also makes the assumption that “a college student is just as likely to buy drugs as a working-class person”
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