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#24 - Families with underage children make up much of the

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Please post below with any questions!
kcho10
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Hi. Why is D incorrect? Thank you!
Adam Tyson
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The short answer to that one, kcho, is that D is not the credited response because E is a better answer! The instructions are to pick the best answer rather than one that is good or that works, right?

Now I know that's not a very satisfying response, and I don't mean to be flip about it. While D is attractive, it's important to only call it a contender at first look, not a winner until you have determined that it is better than all the other answers. When you get to E you should think "well that's even better than D", and that in itself should be enough to select E over D without any worry.

So what's wrong with D, that makes it worse than E? First, in order to identify an assumption built into a claim that something IS fair (the conclusion is about something being fair, not something being unfair), you should prefer an answer that talks about being fair instead of one that talks about being unfair. The author need not assume that one thing is unfair in order to claim that the opposite of that thing is fair. They could both be fair! Isn't that annoying? It's like the law in that regard - sometimes two opposing outcomes can both be considered fair. If I flip a coin, is it fair that it comes up heads when I predicted heads? Sure. Is it fair that it comes up tails when I predicted heads? Still yes!

Now try our favorite tool for Assumption questions to answer E. What if people CANNOT be fairly represented when some people in that group get to vote for others? That would wreck this argument that the families would get fair representation, and that is exactly what you want to see in the correct answer to an Assumption question - the negation wrecks the argument.

Give that a try with answer D and you will see that the negation has no impact on the conclusion of the argument. Saying that one thing is fair won't prove that another thing is unfair.

I hope you find my explanation fair!
Adam M. Tyson
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Sophia123
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Hi!

I see why E is the correct answer but similarly to the poster above I was a little trapped on answer choice D. I negated the answer to say: "It IS fair for lawmakers to favor interests of people who have the vote over interests of people who do not have the vote" so I thought this might weaken the argument in that the current standard is fair - there is no reason to enact any policy at all because it is fair for the policymakers to favor those who have voting rights over families whose children do not have voting rights.

In trying to determine why this answer is wrong, I came to the conclusion that the above argument attacks one of the premises of the stimulus rather than the conclusion of the stimulus that the policy would allow for fair representation. On the other hand E is better because it directly aims at the conclusion by showing that the stated policy change would not allow for the stated effect in the conclusion.

Let me know if this reasoning makes sense. Thanks in advance for your help!

-Sophia
Adam Tyson
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I think your final analysis is the best one, Sophia - focus on the conclusion about fair representation, rather than on the proposal to allow the change to voting, and it makes it much easier to see why E is the better answer.

Another reason why D isn't an assumption of the argument is that it's not about giving preference to voters (adults) over non-voters (children), but about paying too little attention to the voters that have children. The problem is failing to favor one group of voters - parents - over another - non-parents - based on who they represent (families vs themselves). It's not the kids who are being neglected, but the families as a whole. Subtle difference, but perhaps helpful in eliminating that answer?
Adam M. Tyson
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Shylock237
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Another reason I picked D over E was because I did not identify the correct conclusion. I thought the conclusion was that lawmakers in democracies pay too little attention to the interests of families with underage children. Thus D met the requirement I was looking for. However, looking back at it now, the conclusion is actually the remedy suggestion, making E the more clear answer to my new expectation .
Robert Carroll
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Shy,

Your analysis looks good to me! With the conclusion identified correctly, you've got the right idea.

Robert Carroll