argument essay on a public policy

Essay 3 Topic Ideas (description under this link)THIS WEEK: Review the Common Final Assignment (boxed off in syllabus) and write me a SHORT 1-paragraph response here discussing the topic of your final essay. Topics should be related to an issue of public policy—an issue or an idea relevant to your interests. Essay 3 will make an ARGUMENT, and use at least two other rhetorical modes (Description/Narration/Definition/Process Analysis, etc.) that we’ve studied this term.. Let me respond to your assignment before you get started on the final essay. Note: You will likely spend more time thinking about a potential topic than writing this paragraph. So here are some ideas to get you started:
What is an issue related to public policy? If it has a rule or a law or a code attached to it, it’s a matter of public policy. The potential span of topics is wide open. It could be a topic related to an international issue, a national issue, a state issue, a city issue, or a community (like Northwest College) issue, from biggest to smallest here. Some issues (like the legal drinking age) will have lots of research and data attached to them, but the challenge there will be to sift through a daunting amount of research material to find the best things. Other issues (such as irrigation rights in Park County) might have very little data or research on hand, and so the challenge will be to find academically appropriate sources, or to get creative in conducting interviews, contacting local experts, etc.So perhaps the first thing to decide is what rule, law, or code is most important to you. Is there a rule, law, or code that you like? One you don’t like? One that SHOULD exist and doesn’t? Or one that SHOULDN’T exist and does? You will be making an argument (one that takes a position and defends that position with research and data) with this final essay.
Subjects of last semester’s essays included: The origins of and ideas to stop Chronic Wasting Disease in the deer population, Whether it is better to graze on public or private lands for the small rancher, Whether the Northwest College dorm contracts had discriminatory policies or language, Making college free for all US citizens, Requiring an age limit of 16 to participate on social media, Flag burning as a Constitutional right but a moral wrong, Why the US should not participate in ‘wet’ international meat markets, etc. etc.
As you can see, there is a BROAD range of topics here, from international to local. The best way to begin is to begin with yourself–is there something in your life that bugs you or interests you or pleases you personally? That is the thing to write about. is there a change you’d like to see in your community or your state or your nation or the world? That is the thing to write about. It doesn’t matter how momentarily popular or unpopular the idea is, whether everyone’s talking about it or no one’s talking about it. Writing gives us the power to shape the world around us in a good and positive way, and helps connect with other people to make those good changes.
Students: PG 13 Rating for essays, and a refusal of certain topics: Please DO NOT pursue the following topics: Abortion, Arguments about whether some ethnicities/races/cultures/sexual orientations/religions are subhuman, Eugenics, Gun Control/2nd Amendment, Lowering/raising the drinking/smoking age, Marijuana legalization, pro-hoax/conspiracy theory essays, or QAnon propaganda. Everything else is completely fine, provided it is on an arguable (true) premise and meets the PG-13 standards (i.e. you may discuss violence or sexual matters, but you may not DESCRIBE them in such a way that would be considered gratuitous, titillating, or traumatizing for the reader.)
I will NOT be grading you on your position. It’s how you argue that position that concerns me. I want you to be formidable writers, even (or especially) if we disagree on our positions. What you ought to have when you are finished is a well-written, respectably researched essay suitable for other intelligent people of goodwill to read and share.