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Assignment 2: Decision-making and Philosophy Part II: Philosophy and the Community

Whereas Part I focused on how you as an individual are impacted by a particular decision, Part II focuses on the individual as a member of a community. Thus, you will write a eight- to ten-page research paper based upon a current event/pressing social issue that is relevant to your community. You should address the following points in your analysis:

Identify a social issue
Identify news articles that present at least two different points-of-view on the issue
Explain why the issue is relevant to your community
Explain the nature of religious belief and identify the social norms and religious values/beliefs that inform the various perspectives on the issue
Explain a relevant ethical theory
Explain a relevant political theory

Analyze how the chosen theories might approach the issue, including the relevant considerations and the ultimate conclusion reached. You will be expected to explain the relevant theories with support from the course texts (with particular emphasis placed on the primary texts) and from pre-approved secondary sources (including, but not limited to, the course text, online lectures, and a list of suggested online resources).

Assignment 2: The last assignment is worth250 points, so give yourself plenty of time to do a good job. This assignment requires you to analyze an important contemporary social issue in light of philosophical issues, concepts, and theories covered in the second half of the course. Many of you may find that Kantian ethics (especially the humanity formulation of the categorical imperative) works especially well with John Rawls’ theory of justice (Chaffee, 2010, pp. 529-533) or that utilitarian ethics (Chaffee, 2010, pp. 452-468) works best with John Start Mill’s political philosophy (Chaffee, 2010, pp. 543-551). However, no matter what theories you choose, it is essential to include pinpoint cites to the most relevant passages of the required text throughout your essay. Finally, before submitting your work, take some time to (1) check it against the grading rubric to make sure that you have adequately addressed all parts of the assignment, (2) double-check the formatting of your in-text citations and references, and (3) run spelling and grammar checks in Word.

Assignment 2 is due by 11:59 PM (Mountain), Tuesday, January 7.Late submissions will be assessed a penalty equal to 10% of the total possible points for the assignment per day late (25 points).According to SUO policy, no credit may be earned for work submitted after the end of the term: 11:59 PM (Mountain), Wednesday, January 8.

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