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Humanities Libertexts

15.7: Sample Student Essays

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    5008
  • Penny Grimes

    Prof. Polliard

    English 101

    28 April 2016

    Restrooms for All

    On June 26th 2016 the Supreme Court ruled in favor of marriage equality, making same sex marriage legal in all 50 states (Somander). This was a huge step for the LGBTQ+ community, giving may individuals the courage to “come out,” many also felt encouraged to publically identify with a sexual orientation other than heterosexual or a gender other than the one assigned to them at birth. While marriage equality has opened many doors for change and the ability to raise social consciousness and awareness, there are still many unresolved issues.

    One of the most overlooked communities in the LGBTQ+ acronym is the transgender community. “Transgender is an umbrella term for person whose gender identify, gender expression or behavior does not conform to that typically associated with the sex to which they were assigned at birth” (“Answers to Your Questions”). Above many issues and discriminations that the transgender community faces, one has caused much of a controversy over the past couple of years. Should transgender individuals be allowed to use the bathroom of their choice? Many argue that allowing transgender individuals to choose bathrooms based on their personal gender identification could be a dangerous advantage to predators and although it is a reasonable concern, the reasons why transgender individuals should be allowed to use the bathroom of their choice outweigh this concern. Helping them with transition, paving the road to end discrimination against the transgender community, and ending the stigma that surround transgender individuals are just a few of the reasons why we should give them the right to choose the bathroom of the gender they identify with.

    According to Lambda Legal, for a transgender individual in transition, using a public restroom is an essential part of transitioning.

    The most critical aspect of gender transition, according to the internationally- recognized medical protocol set by the World Professional Association for Transgender Health, is to ensure that a transgender person is able to live, be seen and be treated by others in a matter consistent with the person’s gender identity. Getting used to using the appropriate restroom is an important part of this process. Moreover, transgender people must take this step well before proceeding—if at all—to medical interventions involving hormones or surgery. (“FAQ”)

    Before a transgender individual decides to seek medical intervention, it is essential for them that society sees them as the gender they identify as. By not allowing them to choose the bathroom they feel the most comfortable in, we are adding to the psychological damage the misgendering can cause; it is a reminder that the world doesn’t see them as the gender they feel comfortable in.

    By giving the transgender community the right to choose, society would be taking a big step forward in paving the road to ending the discrimination that the transgender community faces daily. According to a survey held in 2011 by the National Center for Transgender Equality and the National Gay and Lesbian Task Force, it was found that “26 percent of transgender students had been denied restroom access in educational settings, and 22 percent of transgender employees reported being denied restroom access at work” (Stringer). Highlighting and eliminating the discrimination that the transgender community faces would be an enormous step to creating an accepting and welcoming society to not only transgender individuals, but also every other community that falls in the LGBTQ+ acronym.

    Additionally, by giving transgender individuals the right to choose, we would be helping destroy the negative stigma that surrounds this community. Many people often fear things that they do not understand, and when this fear is let run rampant, the actions that lead are in many cases severe. “In 2009, 17 percent of all reported violent hate crimes against LGBTQ+ people were directed against those who identified themselves as transgender, with most (11 percent of all hate crimes) identifying as transgender women. The remainder identified as transgender men, gender-queer, gender questioning, or intersex” (“Responding to Transgender Victims”). It is vital, for the safety and overall well-being of transgender individuals, that society takes action sooner than later. It is time to destroy this box that we have placed the LGBTQ+ community in and move forward into a more accepting society.

    Eighteen states, including California, Colorado, and Oregon, have “employment laws that explicitly protect employees on the basis of gender identity” (“FAQ”). However, it does not mean that the fight is over. There are still many concerns from the general public; some believe that giving the transgender community the right to choose will give predators an advantage, and that women will be at a higher risk of being sexually harassed, but these myths can easily be debunked; “there is no evidence that gender-segregated bathrooms are ‘safer’ for cisgender women than unisex bathrooms. And besides, there are laws protecting people from criminal conduct in public restrooms” (FAQ). These harassment concerns that the general public have about gender neutral bathrooms are incidents that transgender individuals face every day of their lives; “53% of 6,450 transgender people reported being harassed or disrespected in a place of public accommodation in a recent survey conducted by the National Center of Transgender Equality and the National Gay and Lesbian Task Force” (FAQ). Though fear of the unknown and bigotry can be hard to correct, it is time society starts making more of an effort to improve the everyday life of transgender individuals.

    By taking this monumental step forward, we will open a million and one opportunities to bring social consciousness and awareness to the numerous amounts of flaws the system has when it comes to members of the LGBTQ+ community. We will help eliminate the stigma surrounding the transgender community and pave the road to ending overall discrimination for transgender individuals. This step is essential if we want to evolve as a society. Discrimination is harmful; equality is not.

    Works Cited

    “Answers to Your Questions About Transgender People, Gender Identity and Gender Expression.” American Psychological Association, 2016. www.apa.org. Accessed 2 May 2016.

    “FAQ: Answers to Common Questions about Transgender Workplace Rights.” Lambda Legal. www.lambdalegal.org. Accessed 2 May 2016.

    “Responding to Transgender Victims of Sexual Assault.” Office of Victims of Crime. Office of Justice Programs, June 2015. www.ovc.gov. Accessed 2 May 2016.

    Somanader, Tanya. “Live Updates on #LoveWins: The Supreme Court Rules that Gay and Lesbian Couples Can Marry.” The White House, 26 June 2015. www.whitehouse.gov. Accessed 2 May 2016.

    Stringer, Scott. “Restrooms for All: A Plan to Expand Gender Neutral Restrooms in NYC.” Office of the New York City Comptroller, Jun 2015. www.comptroller.nyc.gov. Accessed 2 May 2016.

    *This student essay includes access dates and URLs which MLA 8th edition leaves up to the writer or instructor.

    Grader’s Comments:
    • Good use of a two-paragraph introduction strategy
    • Strong thesis with corresponding topic sentences to direct the flow of ideas.
    • Although a rebuttal is present, the writer could have expanded on it.
    • Minor errors in conventions—commas, apostrophes, representation of dates/days (e.g. change “12th” to 12)
    • Avoid first person (e.g. “We”)

    Questions for Discussion and Analysis

    Answer the following questions regarding the essay. Be complete in your explanations and cite examples or quotes in support of your answer. Use complete sentences with proper grammar, spelling and punctuation.

    1. Where is the thesis statement and is it placed effectively?
    2. What opposing viewpoints are included in the essay? How could the writer have countered those concerns more effectively?
    3. Evaluating the writer’s use of sources, were the scholarly and credible? Why or why not?

    Paulina Garcia

    Prof. Marianne Botos

    ENG101

    5 May 2016

    Denied Justice for All

    A Wisconsin man, Jeffrey Dahmer, “removed [his victims] flesh with acid, bleached the skeleton and kept it in his wardrobe, he also kept the victims biceps and placed them in a freezer for later consumption” (Blanco, “Jeffrey”). Another Wisconsin man, Edward Gein, decapitated a woman, then hung her upside down by ropes at her wrists in his shed, only to later stash her head in a burlap sack in his house along with human face masks, skulls on bedposts, organs in the refrigerator, and a lampshade made from the skin of a human face (Blanco, “Edward”). Then, there is also the case of Robert Hansen, a man from Idaho who abducted woman and released them naked into the Alaskan woods, only to hunt them down and kill them (D’Oro). All three were cases where the defendant did not receive the capital punishment. Instead, two were given a life sentence for the 38 known victims’ lives that they took, and the second Wisconsin man was found not guilty by reason of insanity. Those cases and similar cases have caused massive controversy throughout American history. Was the punishment appropriate? Could they have been deterred? Should their past be taken into consideration? It’s fair to say there has been no common ground regarding cases as extreme as those mentioned before.

    Capital punishment means inevitably taking someone else’s life and speculating about what a life is worth and how much value it truly possesses. Is life really priceless or is it in the range of $7 million to $9 million as the U.S. Office of Management and Budget states (Partnoy)? Taking into account Dahmer’s 17 victims would mean he took an equivalent of $119 million to $153 million worth of human life. In Arizona, that would have made him worthy of capital punishment 43 times since the death row cost according to the Arizona Department of Corrections is $3,523,012.85 (Rummell). Even though the death penalty puts into question a person’s values and morals, the benefits it produces and the awareness it brings to a person’s life is ultimately more significant.

    Those against allowing capital punishment to be permitted view it as a heinous crime, and in a way it is. It’s robbing individuals of their right to live a long and meaningful life. Then, there exists the possibility of rehabilitation, giving the defendants a second chance at life and steering them into the right direction. That would be the ideal outcome of every situation, having criminals reevaluate their lifestyles and becoming model citizens within their society. Supreme Court Justice Stephen G. Breyer has been vocal on his standpoint, in which he argues that the death penalty is “flawed, expensive, subject to manipulation, applied disproportionately to minorities, not an effective deterrent and, at the end of the day, irreversible” (Qtd in Sainz). However, there have been proven studies in Texas from Duke University that affirm “from 1994 through 2005, each execution… was associated with… a decrease of up to 2.5 murders” (Mulhausen).

    That being the case, Edward Koch, who served as mayor of New York City for three terms, stated, “If government functioned only when the possibility of error didn’t exist, government wouldn’t function at all.” Even though there’s a small chance of someone getting convicted by error, it does not stand on enough grounds to stop the death penalty all together. Koch later on conducted a study of 7,000 executions throughout 78 years in this country, concluding that the record fails to show a case of an innocent person being executed. This type of punishment gives a certain value to the defendant of the victims’ life and what could have been of it. Therefore, if there is no example set as to the value people’s rights have or their life value, then a murderer might not think twice about the decision to kill, thus causing families to not receive the closure or justice they hope for and deserve. Koch highlights how much “Human life deserves special protection, and one of the best ways to guarantee that protection is to assure that convicted murderers do not kill again.” In part it produces a greater outcome for the community as it deters criminals from repeating heinous crimes and bringing harm to others.

    Then there are those who use the Eighth Amendment against using capital punishment. The amendment states that “Excessive bail shall not be required, nor excessive fines imposed, nor cruel and unusual punishments inflicted” (U.S. Const. Amend XIII). The lethal injection that is given consists of three drugs: “sodium thiopental (a barbiturate to induce anesthesia), pancuronium bromide (a muscle relaxant that paralyzes all the muscles of the body) and potassium chloride (a salt that speeds the heart until it stops)” (Greenemeier). At one point the U.S. Supreme Court ruled that “lethal injection did not create an unacceptable risk of severe pain and did not violate the Eighth Amendment…” (Hudson). Later on, Supreme Court Justice Antonin Scalia pointed out how “If the death penalty did not violate the 8th Amendment when the 8th Amendment was adopted, it doesn’t violate it today” (Qtd in Sainz). All death row inmates go through a trial and are indicted by a jury of their peers, meaning they are given the same rights as any other defendant. Also, death row inmates are typically given the choice of their capital punishment unless the state they reside in only has one option for capital punishment. For example, Arizona provides the option of lethal injection or the gas chamber. Lethal injection consists of the exact same three drugs used in euthanasia (“Methods”). Lethal injection is legal in four states and various countries (“Where”). Thus, it should not be considered a cruel nor unusual punishment.

    The death penalty is not something light and simple that any case should be eligible for. There are factors that have to be met for eligibility for the death penalty. First, at least in the state of Arizona, there must be a first-degree murder, including pre-meditated and felony murder. Then, it must be accompanied by at least one of the considerable aggravating factors (Kirchmeier). A few of the factors listed include committing the offense in an especially heinous or cruel manner, the murdered person was fifteen years of age or older than seventy, done with the intent of promoting criminal street gangs, there was no moral or legal justification, or it was committed for payment of anything of pecuniary value (Kirchmeier). The list goes on, and the factors mentioned do not paint the picture of a model citizen or the possibility of becoming one. Even when committing such a despicable crime, the Constitution ensures that no person shall be deprived of life without due process (U.S.Const. Amend V). It gives the defendant a chance to defend his actions against his peers, but nonetheless, some crimes are too barbarous to deserve a second chance when the victim was not given that equal opportunity.

    Most importantly, people are punished for the crime(s) they committed, not for the person they claim to be after the incident. For example, a criminal can claim to be rehabilitated and a changed person after the crime has been done, but that does not necessarily mean it is true. It does not eliminate the fact that the crime has been done, a life has been taken, and there is no rehabilitation for bringing back a victim to their family, friends, or life. Criminals should be given a punishment proportional to their crime and actions. Robert Blecker, a New York Law School professor and death penalty advocate, constantly reaffirms in his documentary, Robert Blecker Wants Me Dead, that the past counts and defendants should be connected to their crime, serving whatever punishment seems proportional to the offense. This documentary portrays a Tennessee man, Daryl Holton, who murdered his three sons and their half-sister. All throughout the film Holton is visited by Robert Blecker and seems to ignore that what he did was wrong. In Holton’s mind, his actions were justified because he would rather they go up to heaven than live in the horrible conditions they were in and possibly grow up to be criminals. Holton was a stern believer that he did the right thing; he never budged on his standpoint (Robert). For a case as extreme as Holton’s, it is clear that rehabilitation would not have been the best option because it was tied into his values and morals. Capital punishment is not meant for just any criminal but neither is the opportunity of a second chance.

    If a crime is so despicable and inhumane that capital punishment would be proportional then that is the justice that needs to be served. It is unjust for those who have to live in the aftermath of the crime, the victim’s family and friends, to see their loved ones’ murderer given more rights than the person they’ll be putting in a coffin and lowering into the ground. Worse is the knowledge that after twenty-five years, the murderer might be released into society and live the life their victim did not get a chance to or even again bring heinous tragedy to others. It is an unjust non-punishment for criminals whose crimes are so heinous it makes them eligible for capital punishment. It gives them something their victim does not have nor will he or she ever have, a life.

    Works Cited

    Blanco, Juan I. “Edward Theodore Gein: Arrest.” Murderpedia. http://murderpedia.org/male. G/g/gein-edward.htm.

    —-. “Jeffrey Lionel Dahmer: Known Victims.” Murderpedia. http://murderpedia.org/ male.D/d/dahmer-jeffrey.htm.

    D'Oro, Rachel. “Robert Hansen, Convicted Serial Killer in Alaska, Dies at 75.” The Washington Post, 22 Aug. 2014. https://www.washingtonpost.com/natio...c1a_story.html.

    Greenemeier, Larry. “Cruel and Usual?: Is Capital Punishment by Lethal Injection Quick and Painless?” Scientific American, 27 Oct. 2010. http://www.scientificamerican.com/ar...hal-injection/.

    Hudson, David L. “U.S. Supreme Court Active in Death Penalty Cases, Justices Deeply Divided.” Insights on Law & Society, vol. 16, no. 1, 2015. Academic Search Complete.

    Kirchmeier, Jeffrey. “Casting a Wider Net: Another Decade of Legislative Expansion of the Death Peanalty in the United States.” Pepperdine Law Review, vol. 34, no. 1, 2006. http://digitalcommons.pepperdine.edu...37&context=plr.

    Koch, Edward I. “Death and Justice.” New Republic, 1985. http://admin.faulkner.edu/admin/webs...rmack/koch.pdf.

    “Suicide, Abortion, Euthanasia, and Life Issues.” Life: a New Zealand Resource for Life Related Issues, 2010. http://www.life.org.nz/euthanasia/.

    Malhausen, David B. “Is It Time to Abolish the Death Penalty.” U.S.News & World Report, 29 Sept. 2014. http://www.usnews.com/opinion/articl...eterring-crime.

    Partnoy, Frank. “The Cost of a Human Life, Statistically Speaking.” The Globalist, 21 July 2012. http://www.theglobalist.com/the-cost...ally-speaking/.

    Robert Blecker Wants Me Dead. Dir. Ted Shillinger. Perf. Robert Blecker, Daryl Holton, Atlas Media, 2009.

    Rummell, Cooper. “The Real Cost of the Death Penalty in Arizona.” KTAR News, 30 Sept. 2014. http://ktar.com/story/92517/the-real...ty-in-arizona/.

    Sainz, Adrian. “Justice Antonin Scalia ‘Wouldn’t Be Surprised’ If Supreme Court Ends the Death Penalty.” Los Angeles Times, 25 Sept. 2015. http://www.latimes.com/ opinion/opinion-la/laol-scalia-death-penalty-pope-francis-xi-jinpeng-trump-boehner-20150925-story.html.

    U.S. Constitution. Amend. V.

    U.S. Constitution. Amend. XIII.

    “Where Is Euthanasia Legal?” New Health Guide, 2014. http://www.newhealthguide.org/ Where-Is-Euthanasia-Legal.html.

    Grader’s Comments:
    • Good use of probing questions
    • Excellent variety of sources
    • Smart use of specific and graphic examples to gain readers’ attention
    • When an error exists in the original source, MLA requires the writer acknowledge the error by inserting “[sic]” after the error

    Questions for Discussion and Analysis

    Answer the following questions regarding the essay. Be complete in your explanations and cite examples or quotes in support of your answer. Use complete sentences with proper grammar, spelling and punctuation.

    1. According to the essay, what is the definition of capital punishment?
    2. What four reasons does the student argue in support of the thesis?
    3. List three different types of experts used and cited in the essay.
    4. After considering the argument, what is your position on capitol punishment? Explain, providing your own reasons.

    Ima Student

    Professor Good

    English 101

    18 June 2016

    Stars and Stripes Forever and the Freedom to Light It on Fire

    An artist sticks a U.S. flag in a toilet bowl and entitles her work “The American Dream Gone To Pot.” Another artist drapes a flag on the floor and asks the question “What is the Proper Way to Display the U.S. Flag?” while encouraging viewers to make a choice whether to step on the flag that is spread on the floor. In 1969, a man protests the shooting of civil rights activist James Meredeth, by publicly burning a flag while declaring, “If they did that to Meredeth, we don’t need an American flag” (qtd. in Ponessa, “Flag” 1510). Congress is upset by the lack of respect for the greatest symbol of this nation, and it now wants to pass an amendment which would prohibit flag burning or desecration. It proposes a constitutional amendment that would give Congress and the states the authority to pass laws prohibiting flag desecration (Ponessa, “House” 1646). Despite apparently overwhelming popular support, the measure still has many vocal critics who say it will infringe on the First Amendment right to free speech. “We’re going to the heart and soul of the right of freedom of expression as protected in the Constitution,” ranking Democrat John Conyers Jr. of Michigan said. “It is difficult to conceive of a more poorly drafted proposal” (qtd. in Ponessa, “House” 1646). Barney Frank, D-Mass., who has said that the Constitution should not be amended frivolously, added, “I think we are making a well- intentioned mistake” (qtd. in Ponessa, “House” 1646).

    Just what is this well-intentioned mistake all about? It is about the American flag: a piece of material but more than just a vivid scrap of material; it is an icon of freedom, liberty, and justice for all. The American flag is a piece of cloth with thirteen red and white stripes and fifty white stars on a blue square, a piece of cloth that has been through two World Wars and numerous other battles; a piece of cloth that was even flown to the moon. The flag stands for everything America is. It is as American as America itself. The Stars and Stripes wave for both the respectful and disrespectful citizens of this country. It stands for liberty and justice for all, for freedom of speech, freedom of expression, perhaps even freedom to burn and desecrate this beloved symbol. Although the American flag is worthy of great esteem, the government cannot take away the right to desecrate the flag without taking away all that it stands for – freedom.

    Opponents of the amendment view physically defacing the flag as a despicable act, and indeed it is. It brings dishonor to the memory of those who have given their lives to defend its ideals. The flag stands for all that American has been through – its hopes and its dreams. It is a symbol of unity, or at least the stated desire to be united. “Mankind lives by symbols, and the flag is worth respecting. It represents our shared experience, our connection to America’s past and future and our responsibility for one another, regardless of class, age or race” (Leo 17). However, flag desecration is a form of expression, and the government cannot strip away the right to express oneself, simply because the act is vulgar. As the Supreme Court stated in 1989, “If there is a bedrock principle underlying the First Amendment, it is that the government may not prohibit the expression of an idea simply because society finds the idea itself offensive or disagreeable” (Apel).

    Therefore, society must strive to see that flag burning and desecration cannot demolish the true glory of the flag. Attempts to mock the flag through crude art work and brazen acts of desecration cannot destroy the real power that stands behind this American symbol. The Webster’s Dictionary definition of desecration is to take away the sacredness of, to treat as not sacred; to profane. Setting “Old Glory” on fire, or stuffing it in a toilet bowl and calling it “art” are acts of desecration. However, as the Arizona Republic observes, “It takes more than harsh words and nasty graphic art to dilute [the flag’s] power. It is clearly one of the strongest symbols ever created” (“Old Glory”).

    Furthermore, people are burning the flag less and less frequently. Talk of banning flag desecration seems to be happening more than actual flag burnings. Thus, it would be easier to just ignore the occasional flag burnings, rather than write a prohibition against it into the constitution. For example, there are only 45 such occurrences on record since 1969... and since the Supreme Court in 1989 overturned a verdict against a flag burner in Texas v. Johnson, not more than eight occurrences per year have been recorded (Buckley 75). William F. Buckley, Jr. sarcastically cracked, “Why go to the Constitution to prohibit something that happens as rarely as an eclipse of the sun?” (75). The number of people eager to burn a flag to call attention to a cause or to themselves is very small. By one account, only three flag burnings are known to have occurred since 1993 (Leo 17). As John Leo, reporting for U.S. News & World Report points out, “It is politically much smarter to ignore the occasional flag burner. Without an arrest and big emotional reaction, the burning comes to nothing” (17). “We need to be explaining to people that amending the Constitution is a radical solution to a very small problem,” said Paul McMasters, Freedom Forum’s First Amendment ombudsman (qtd. in Hernandez 13).

    Beyond being merely a radical solution, the proposed amendment to prohibit flag burning and desecration would suffocate freedom of speech. This right is guaranteed to anyone on U.S. soil (including illegal immigrants). “...the anti-flag amendment violates the right to free expression guaranteed of the First Amendment (Hernandez 13). The Supreme Court considers burning the American Flag an act which is protected by the First Amendment right to free speech. The only way Congress could make such anti-flag desecration laws pass constitutional muster is to amend the very document that protects these rights (Apel). Senator Ted Kennedy stated, “The words of the first amendment are simple and majestic: ‘Congress shall make no law abridging freedom of speech.’ The proposed constitutional amendment would undermine that fundamental liberty” (Apel). “It [the proposed amendment] would devalue the Bill of Rights that for two centuries has encouraged tolerance of all views and the freedom to speak one’s mind without fear of going to jail,” states Bill Ketter, editor of the Qunicy, Mass., Patriot Ledger (qtd. in Hernandez 13).

    The most important argument for not banning flag desecration is that respect for the flag cannot be legislated. It has to grow out of the lives of its citizens (Leo 17). For example, not everyone in America loves, respects, and honors their country, but that is what makes this nation so dynamic. People can be who they want to be and think what they want to think. The very essence of America is that people are not stifled or bound by chains to love her. People have freedoms. And the right to free speech and free-expression is one of those freedoms. Sen. Bob Kerrey, D-Neb. Observes that “...although flag burning is a despicable act, respecting the right of individuals to express themselves is part of patriotism” (qtd. in Ponessa, “Flag” 1510). The proposed amendment would not change anyone’s thinking concerning the flag, for rules do not change minds – rules just set new standards. Those that want to desecrate the flag will continue to do so, and those that respect the flag will continue to do so. “...the critics fail to recognize that the United States was born on dissent. Our country is great, unlike other nations, because we have allowed our government to be criticized and we safeguard freedom of speech for everyone” (“Old Glory” B6). The irony behind saying that people cannot deface the flag is that the government has to come up with a rule, a ban, a law – whereas the whole philosophy behind the flag is liberty and justice for all.

    To see someone blasphemously “rip” the flag to pieces can be shocking and quite sad, but by passing an amendment to prohibit flag burning, the government unravels all that the flag stands for. An amendment would only punish those that desecrate the flag, it would not change their hearts or sway them to view the flag in a more respectful manner. It is only a “Grand Old Flag’ as long as it waves for the free and the brave, and both the respectful and disrespectful citizens of this nation. It is stars and stripes forever as long as those stars and stripes represent true freedom.

    Works Cited

    Apel, Warren S. “A Brief History of Flag Burning.” Congressional Records, 15 Oct. 1997.

    Buckley Jr., William F. “Burn the Flag? Well No.” National Review, 10 July 1995, p. 75.

    “Desecration.” Webster’s New World Dictionary. The World Publishing Company, 1951.

    Hernandez, Debra Gersh. “Dodging A Bullet.” Editor and Publisher, 23 December 1995, p. 13-31.

    Leo, John. “Oh, Say, Can You See...The Point?” U.S. News and World Report, July 1995, p. 17.

    “’Old Glory’ Paint Your Own Canvas.” Arizona Republic, 14 July 1996, B6.

    Ponessa, Jeanne. “Flag Protection vs. Free Speech.” Congressional Quarterly Weekly Report, 1995, p. 1510.

    ---. “House Panel Approves Measure To Prohibit Flag Burning.” Congressional Quarterly Weekly Report, 1995, p. 1646-1648.

    Grader’s Comments:
    • Strong opening with good attention grabber
    • Clear thesis with strong assertion of position
    • Well organized progression of four reasons
    • Respectful tone throughout essay with food pathos, logos and ethos
    • Conclusion could be stronger

    Questions for Discussion and Analysis

    Answer the following questions regarding the essay. Be complete in your explanations and cite examples or quotes in support of your answer. Use complete sentences with proper grammar, spelling and punctuation.

    1. What is the thesis of the essay?
    2. Look up and write down the definition of “desecrate.” What is your opinion about whether or not an individual or group has the right to desecrate the American flag?
    3. Of the reasons presented, which is the strongest? The weakest? Explain why.
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