Is racism a belief or something that is taught?

Each response should be a minimum of 75 words, Read the arguments presented by your classmates, and analyze the reasoning that they have presented. Whether you agree with their position or not,  help them to improve their arguments. In particular, point out any respect in which a reasonable person might disagree with the truth of their premises or with the strength of their reasoning. Consider addressing the following questions: Did your classmate present a convincing argument? Why, or why not? Which part of the argument might someone dispute (e.g., premise, conclusion, structure, etc.)? How might the argument be strengthened?

  1. 1. Is racism a belief or something that is taught?

Argument A

Premise 1:  Some individuals believe based on their skin color, social or economic status allows them to have superiority over one or more races which results in discrimination and prejudice towards others.

Premise 2: Individuals should not be judged based on their physical appearance, but the respect shown towards others.

Conclusion: Racism destroys communities and has a devastating effect on society.

Argument B

Premise 1:  Parents have a direct influence on how racism is introduced to a child and how they view other ethnicities.

Premise 2: If individuals allow themselves to see things that they have in common and accept their differences, they could have a better understanding and appreciate other cultures.

Conclusion: Racism is learned behavior which is taught not how someone was born.


The strength of the argument in premise A would match the belief on why some individuals feel superior over others based on race, color, social, and economic status. Because of how our country was established based on the belief that it was okay to mistreat groups of individuals and use them for labor and economic growth resulted in discrimination, prejudice, and bias. In argument, B explains how parents have a direct influence on how a child first learns about an unfavorable behavior passed down from generation to generation and the effect that it may have with interactions with others that look or act differently than they do. Racism is an ongoing global issue which can be a difficult topic that most individuals do not want to talk about. Reasonably both arguments have been interpreted with some similarities; however, more information is needed to substantiate the evidence listed above. Pierce

  1. 2. Topic

Is abortion morally acceptable when the woman’s life is not in danger due to pregnancy?

Argument A

  • Premise 1: If a woman is forced to bare/ birth a child, she is also expected by society to care for this child which goes against equality for women as the same can not be expected from a male who can not physically bare a child.
  • Premise 2: Woman have a moral right to decide what they will do with their bodies including their reproductive system.
  • Conclusion: Abortion is morally acceptable when the woman’s life is not in danger due to pregnancy.

Argument B

  • Premise 1: Human life is based off chance due to a person’s ability to avoid death after birth being circumstantial unlike the intentional death of a fetus.
  • Premise 2: Although the fetus represents an undeveloped life, it is still a life that deserves protection.
  • Conclusion: Abortion is not morally acceptable when the woman’s life is not in danger due to pregnancy.


When comparing the two arguments presented, Argument A seems to match the reasons of morality as to why abortion should be acceptable no matter the circumstances with it being a woman’s right to decide what she does with her body. However, Argument B explains how a fetus is still considered a life that should be protected which an abortion is the complete opposite of. I don’t feel either or is any better then the other as the arguments can both be improved with more research and supporting evidence. I do think that both arguments are fair representations of what those who are taking this position on a topic may suggest as this seems to be a frequent topic amongst today’s society. The premises I have chosen are reasonable. A way for the arguments to be improved would be to provide enough evidence to prove either argument to be true as  there is no right or wrong answer on this subject in my opinion. I find both arguments to be deductive as they are claims in which I, the speaker, follow with from the premises. Keterson

  1. 3. Is the ‘cry it out’ method good for babies?


Argument A:

Premise 1: Self-soothing is an important skill that all babies should learn.
Premise 2: ‘Crying it out’ gives babies a chance to learn to self soothe.
Conclusion: The ‘cry it out’ method is good for babies.

The strength of this argument lies in that the premises provide logical support for the conclusion.  The weakness is that the assumptions are relatively broad with both premises.  Premise 1 assumes that all babies should learn to self soothe.  Premise 2 fails to account for other things that would provide an opportunity to self soothe.

Argument B:

Premise 1: Babies need to be comforted.
Premise 2: ‘Cry it out’ denies babies the comfort of their parents.
Conclusion: The ‘cry it out’ method is not good for babies.

The strength of this argument is in premise 1, which is an assumption that should be readily accepted by most readers.  The weakness comes in the assumption that parents using ‘cry it out’ do not provide comfort to their babies.

Both arguments are relatively weak because of the assumptions necessary to make to accept the correctness of the premises.  They can be improved by reading the research on the subject and seeing what it has to say on both sides of the issue.  I think all of the premises are reasonable.  I could see either or both being correct.  I think they reasonably well represent things someone on each side might say, however, there is much more information which could be added and questions which could be raised.  For example, what are the adult outcomes for babies who were made to ‘cry it out’ vs. babies who were not?  Both conclusions would benefit from scientific study to provide evidence-based premises which could be used to solidify the position.Adam




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