X. Short Research Paper (RP):
A. Write an 8-10 page double-spaced typed paper addressing ONE of the following questions:
1. Domestic Issue: Immigration –Should congressional Republicans adopt a comprehensive immigration bill and then face a likely backlash from many of their own voters, or should they oppose efforts that would provide a path to citizenship for undocumented workers that may contribute to larger GOP losses in the future as over 11 million immigrants become citizens?
? http://www.nytimes.com/2013/07/11/us/politics/gop-in-house-resists-overhaul-for- immigration.html?nl=todaysheadlines&emc=edit_th_20130711&_r=0
2. Constitutional issue: Should the Supreme Court overturn State laws banning same sex marriage because contrary to the “Full Faith and Credit Clause” of Article IV such laws would not recognize gay marriages of same sex couples that married in states where gay marriage was legal, or should the Court allow each state to decide whether or not to recognize gay marriages based on the preferences of the majority of state voters?
3. Foreign Policy: Should the US provide more support to the Syrian rebels who are trying to overthrow the dictatorship of Bashar al-Assad, to include sophisticated weapons and possibly a no fly zone, or should it avoid further military involvement in Syria? (why and why not?)
B. Guidance: Paper will be based entirely on the student’s OWN research and analysis. Student should analyze and accurately describe how exactly the issues raised by the question affects or are likely to impact the Public interest and US national security (for #3). The paper should examine both sides of the issue* (for and against), and after (AND ONLY AFTER) objective written analysis- adopt a personal position which can be supported by that written analysis. Student may use the Text for initial reference, plus a minimum of four other outside secondary or *primary sources *(i.e. news articles in major newspapers/magazines, political journals, major news analysis on radio/TV broadcasts, such as C-SPAN, NPR, Network or Cable political talk show/News interviews with recognized experts, government officials or members of congress, & the Internet.) Note: such web sites as www.Wikipedia.com and other similar sites are only acceptable if they contain cited sources of recognized authorities and experts. Such sources can be useful at the start of your research for their endnotes which may identify other more authoritative sources.
C. Footnotes in MLA style: The paper should be submitted in MLA style and will cite all sources by footnotes. Your paper should also include a standard bibliography or a list of cited sources used for support of all statements made throughout paper that are not your own work or ideas. Instructions on when to use footnotes and how, along with examples for using footnotes are available at: http://www.markville.ss.yrdsb.edu.on.ca/history/history/footnotes.html (and are also shown below)
HOW DO I FOOTNOTE USING MY COMPUTER? (for Microsoft Word 2007):
Step 1: Click on References tab
Step 2: Click Insert footnote
Step 3: Type in publication information as follows: Author’s First Name, Author’s Last Name,
Title of Source. (Place of Publishing: Publisher, copyright date) page number.
Step 4: Scroll back to essay (Note: for older versions of Word click Insert tab & follow prompts)
D. Final draft of your Paper is due Class 15a, either in “hard copy” following class 15a’s Review & FX prep, or e-mailed as an attachment to SEALsrest@earthlink.net by midnight on the Sunday immediately following the POLS-229 Final Exam..
E. Comment on thesis statements* and how you address the RP question chosen:
Many of you will feel strongly about which side of the contentious issues presented in the syllabus you support or oppose. That’s fine, but the guidance presented in the syllabus directs that you “…analyze and accurately describe how exactly the issues raised by the question (that you select) affects the Public interest. The paper should examine both sides of the issue (for and against), and –after (AND ONLY AFTER) (your) objective written analysis of both sides- adopt a personal position which can then be supported by that written analysis.” In other words you are required to present both sides of the argument objectively, then analyze those arguments (pro & con), and then take a position and explain why we the reader should agree with your analysis and conclusions.
F. Objective and balanced presentation: Some students in the past have mistakenly taken a strong position advocating one side of the issue over the other right off. If the exercise merely required you to advocate one side of the argument vs. the other, that approach would be correct. But this project is more complicated than merely advocating one particular position of a contentious issue. The object of this exercise is to research, analyze, and present both sides (pro & con) of the issues first- in an objective and unbiased presentation. Once that’s accomplished, and based on your subsequent reasoned analysis of those arguments, you may then present whatever you’ve concluded to be the best argument (for or against) the position that you may have already strongly favored intuitively from the very start. Just explain in a rationale and objective presentation why we the readers should also embrace your conclusion (position), especially if we were neutral or inclined to favor the opposite view. You may then state the position that you may have already favored all along at the start in your paper’s concluding section. This statement should then be followed by convincing rationale for it based on your previous objective analysis.
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