Justify the Conclusion. The correct answer choice is (B)
In this stimulus, Chiu asserts that the belief that a person is always morally blameworthy for feeling certain emotions is misguided. Since persons are only responsible for what is under their control, Chiu concludes that a person is not always morally blameworthy for feeling certain emotions.
- Premise: People are responsible only for acts under their control:
Individual responsibility under individual control
under individual control Individual responsibility
Premise: Whether one feels the referenced emotions is sometime not under one’s control:
Certain emotions under individual control
Linking the above two premises:
Certain emotions under individual control Individual responsibility
Conclusion: People are not always morally blameworthy for certain emotions:
Certain emotions always morally blameworthy
We can see that this conclusion represents a leap in logic, and in order to justify Chiu’s conclusion, we must identify the answer choice that links moral blameworthiness with individual responsibility or control.
Answer choice (A): The conclusion concerns moral blameworthiness for feeling certain emotions, and this choice refers to actions beyond one’s control that are responses to certain emotions. Further, since there is no reference to moral blameworthiness, this answer choice cannot represent the link needed to justify Chiu’s conclusion.
Answer choice (B): This is the correct answer choice. This choice, which discusses the variables required to link the loose ends of Chui’s argument, can be diagrammed as follows:
- Moral blameworthiness Individual responsibility
When we draw the contrapositive, we see that if a person is not responsible for something, he or she is not morally blameworthy:
- Individual responsibility Moral blameworthiness
When we add this to the author’s premise that people are responsible only for what is within their control, Chiu’s conclusion is logically justified:
- Under control Individual responsibility Moral blameworthiness
From the above conditional statement, we can conclude that, according to Chiu, in cases where emotions are beyond one’s control, moral blame should not always be assigned.
Answer choice (C): Chiu’s argument involves control of emotions and associated blameworthiness. The relative appropriateness of the referenced emotions has nothing to do with Chiu’s argument, and this answer choice cannot support or justify Chiu’s conclusion in any way, so this choice cannot be correct.
Answer choice (D): This answer choice fails to reference one’s own moral blameworthiness for feeling certain emotions, so it cannot provide the link needed to justify Chiu’s argument. The reasoning in this choice can be diagrammed as follows:
- Under control hold others responsible
Since this answer choice introduces a new variable, involving the responsibility of others, and does not link the elements discussed above, this answer choice does not justify Chui’s conclusion.
Answer choice (E): Chiu makes the point that sometimes emotions are not under one’s control, and it is these cases to which his argument refers. The proportions of controllable vs. uncontrollable emotions for which people are commonly blamed are irrelevant to the argument. Further, this answer choice fails to tie together the rogue elements of the argument as discussed above, so this answer choice is incorrect.