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# Letter to the editor: Proposition Q, a controversial measure on this

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Re: Letter to the editor: Proposition Q, a controversial measure on this [#permalink]
GetThisDone wrote:
Letter to the editor: Proposition Q, a controversial measure on this year’s ballot, would prohibit the ownership of handguns within the city’s limits. Under the plan, gun owners would have a 90-day grace period to turn in their weapons to authorities. Proponents of the proposition argue that fewer handguns on the streets would lead to less violent crime, making the city safer for all of its citizens. Unfortunately, the ban would actually have the opposite effect. Since only law abiding citizens would honor the ban, armed criminals would not only keep their weapons but would also have the confidence to act with impunity on a population that could no longer defend itself.

In the letter to the editor, the two portions in boldface play which of the following roles?

(A) The first is an observation that the author uses to support a particular position; the second is that position.

(B) The first is a pattern of cause and effect that the author believes to be true; the second offers evidence to contradict this pattern.

(C) The first is a position that the author argues will not hold in this case; the second is the author’s position.

(D) The first is a prediction that the author believes to be untrue. The second is a statement of fact that undermines the author’s position.

(E) The first is a direct relationship that the author believes will not hold in this case; the second offers evidence in support of the author’s position.

This question is part of the GMAT Club Critical Reasoning: Boldface Revision Project.

OFFICIAL EXPLANATION:

The author of the letter believes that the city’s proposed handgun ban will actually make the city a more dangerous place. In support of this prediction, the author offers the second boldfaced portion of the argument: an assertion that criminals will feel increased confidence to act since their victims will no longer be armed. This assertion contradicts the first boldfaced portion of the argument, a relationship between fewer guns and less violent crime cited by proponents of the ban.

(A) The first boldface portion argues that the handgun ban would lead to less violent crime, a position that directly contradicts the author’s stated position. The second boldface portion offers support for the author’s position, but is not the position itself.

(B) The first boldface portion is a pattern of cause and effect that the author believes not to be true in this case. By demonstrating that violent crime will increase, the second boldface portion does offer evidence to contradict the first boldface pattern.

(C) The first boldface portion does present a position that the author argues will not hold in this case. The second boldface portion, however, is not the author’s position; instead, it offers evidence in support of the author’s position.

(D) The first boldface portion is a prediction that the author believes to be untrue. The second boldface portion, however, does not undermine the author’s position that the handgun ban will increase violent crime. Instead, it supports the author’s position.

(E) CORRECT. The first boldface portion shows a direct relationship between the number of handguns and violent crime; proponents cite this relationship to support the handgun ban, but the author refutes this relationship. The second boldface portion provides evidence to support the author’s position that the handgun ban will actually make the citizens of the city less safe.
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Re: Letter to the editor: Proposition Q, a controversial measure on this [#permalink]
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souvik101990 wrote:
This question is part of the GMAT Club Critical Reasoning: Boldface Revision Project.

Letter to the editor: Proposition Q, a controversial measure on this year’s ballot, would prohibit the ownership of handguns within the city’s limits. Under the plan, gun owners would have a 90-day grace period to turn in their weapons to authorities. Proponents of the proposition argue that fewer handguns on the streets would lead to less violent crime, making the city safer for all of its citizens. Unfortunately, the ban would actually have the opposite effect. Since only law abiding citizens would honor the ban, armed criminals would not only keep their weapons but would also have the confidence to act with impunity on a population that could no longer defend itself. In the letter to the editor, the two portions in boldface play which of the following roles?

A. The first is an observation that the author uses to support a particular position; the second is that position.

B. The first is a pattern of cause and effect that the author believes to be true; the second offers evidence to contradict this pattern.

C. The first is a position that the author argues will not hold in this case; the second is the author’s position.

D. The first is a prediction that the author believes to be untrue. The second is a statement of fact that undermines the author’s position.

E. The first is a direct relationship that the author believes will not hold in this case; the second offers evidence in support of the author’s position.

Nice question. Its down to C and E and C is the tempting answer, which is so often the wrong choice. The second is not the author's position. The author's position is that the ban will have the opposite effect. Answer E correctly states that the first is a relationship that the author thinks won't hold and the second is the premise on which the author bases his position, which is that the ban won't work (because of the fact that criminals.... and the fact that people...).
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Re: Letter to the editor: Proposition Q, a controversial measure on this [#permalink]
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Down to C and E.

In C, the 2nd BF is said to be the "author's position". This is not true. The 2nd BF is evidence in support of the "author's position". "Author's position" is " Unfortunately, the ban would actually have the opposite effect."- the line before the 2nd BF. Notice the keyword "Since" in the non-boldened part of the sentence carrying the 2nd BF? This again tells us that the author is talking about facts and hence this sentence will tell us about evidence and not the author's stand.

E is perfect as it removes the follies of C.

BF1: "direct relationship"-Check
"author believes"-Check
"in this case"-Check

BF2: "evidence"-Check
"in support of the author's position"-Check
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Re: Letter to the editor: Proposition Q, a controversial measure on this [#permalink]
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Proposition Q, a controversial measure on this year’s ballot, would
prohibit the ownership of handguns within the city’s limits. Under the plan, gun owners
would have a 90-day grace period to turn in their weapons to authorities. Proponents of the
proposition argue that fewer handguns on the streets would lead to less violent crime,
making the city safer for all of its citizens.
Unfortunately, the ban would actually have the
opposite effect. Since only law abiding citizens would honor the ban, armed criminals
would not only keep their weapons but would also have the confidence to act with
impunity on a population that could no longer defend itself.

1. Evidence: "a plan to ban ownership of handguns, make gun owners to turn in their weapons to authorities".

2. Main Conclusion (author believes the ban will make the city more dangerous rather): "Unfortunately, the ban would actually have the opposite effect."
Premise: "Since only law abiding citizens would honor the ban, armed criminals
would not only keep their weapons but would also have the confidence to act with
impunity on a population that could no longer defend itself
"

3. Intermediate conclusion (proponent's position): the ban will make "the city safer for all of its citizens"
Premise: "fewer handguns on the streets would lead to less violent crime"

(A) The first is an observation that the author uses to support a particular position; the second is that position.
B2 is not the position (conclusion) - it is a premise.

(B) The first is a pattern of cause and effect that the author believes to be true; the second makes a claim that contradicts this pattern.
The author does not believe it will come true.

(C) The first is a position that the author argues will not hold in this case; the second is the author’s position.
This one is tricky. Since the B1 unites both the intermediate conclusion (position that the author opposes) and the premise this should not be regarded as a solely a position. Let us see further.

(D) The first is a prediction that the author believes to be untrue. The second is a claim that undermines the author’s position.
B2 does the opposite - it is the premise that the author uses to support his conclusion.

(E) The first is a direct relationship that the author believes will not hold in this case; the second makes a claim in support of the author’s position.
As long as I don't like any of the above questions I choose E and I am done. However B2 is correctly named as a claim (premise) in support of the position. If I compare this description of B1 with the one in (C) I shall like (E) option because direct relationship sounds good to descrive a conlusion and a premise combined in one
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Re: Letter to the editor: Proposition Q, a controversial measure on this [#permalink]
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The author of the letter believes that the city’s proposed handgun ban will
actually make the city a more dangerous place. In support of this prediction, the
author offers the second boldfaced portion of the argument: an assertion that
criminals will feel increased confidence to act since their victims will no longer be
armed. This assertion contradicts the first boldfaced portion of the argument, a
relationship between fewer guns and less violent crime cited by proponents of
the ban.

(E) CORRECT. The first boldface portion shows a direct relationship between the
number of handguns and violent crime; proponents cite this relationship to
support the handgun ban, but the author refutes this relationship. The second
boldface portion provides evidence to support the author’s position that the
handgun ban will actually make the citizens of the city less safe.

or

1. There is a ban on guns proposed.
2. Position 1: fewer guns lead to less crime and a safer city (proponents- bold 1)
3. Position 2: The ban would lead to more crime and a more dangerous city (author)
4. Criminals would keep their guns and have more confidence because there is no threat of retaliation with a weapon (bold 2)

Clearly the authors position is opposite the position that is boldfaced as statement 1.

Based on that knowledge you can eliminate A & B. The author believes boldface 2 holds true so you can eliminate D quickly, which leaves you with C and E.

In C they state that the 2nd boldface is the authors position. But is it? The answer is no. His position is that its a more dangerous city.

E is the correct answer. The position is that its a more dangerous city. Why is it a more dangerous city? Because the criminals will be the only ones to keep their guns. That is a claim that supports his position.
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Re: Letter to the editor: Proposition Q, a controversial measure on this [#permalink]
Hi experts,

I have an issue understanding how the second boldface constitutes evidence. It appears more as a theory/prediction, opinion or subjective line of reasoning. Isn't evidence an item/piece of information that is objective in nature (notwithstanding that what the evidence denotes, or the validity of the evidence can be challenged)? For example, I would say that "the doors to the conference room were open, and people entered because I can see foodwraps etc". Versus, "keeping the doors to the conference room open would mean litter spreading inside because people would enter" -- in the first case, I can confidently say that the evidence supporting the assertion of people having entered is foodwraps lieing around. But, in the second case, I am opining that people may enter so I fail to see how that is evidence -- a similar scenario, I believe, is playing out in this question.

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Re: Letter to the editor: Proposition Q, a controversial measure on this [#permalink]
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Dear Experts,

I have serious doubt accepting second boldface as an evidence.
.....armed criminals "would" not only keep their weapons but "would" also.......-> those "would" make the second boldface seem as if its the author's opinion or prediction & not an evidence.

Would be great if someone throws light on this ambiguity
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Re: Letter to the editor: Proposition Q, a controversial measure on this [#permalink]
Bunuel KarishmaB
I don't understand how the second boldface can be an evidence. It seems more like authors position. Because its also possible that along with few normal citizens the armed criminal too might return the guns back reducing the no of violent crimes. But here since the author assumes the criminals won't be returning the guns it seems more like a position author holds. So I feel " C " seems more appropriate here.
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Re: Letter to the editor: Proposition Q, a controversial measure on this [#permalink]
This is definitely a flawed question. The second bold is an opinion, and it is based on the previous portion (which is also an opinion!). That makes it an intermediate conclusion, not evidence. The GMAT seems pretty consistent in using the term "evidence" to refer to factual information.
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Re: Letter to the editor: Proposition Q, a controversial measure on this [#permalink]

vivekraj5991 wrote:
Bunuel KarishmaB
I don't understand how the second boldface can be an evidence. It seems more like authors position. Because its also possible that along with few normal citizens the armed criminal too might return the guns back reducing the no of violent crimes. But here since the author assumes the criminals won't be returning the guns it seems more like a position author holds. So I feel " C " seems more appropriate here.

­
(C) is not correct because the second boldface is not the author's position.
The author's position is "the ban would actually have the opposite effect" (the ban will make the city more unsafe)

He uses the second boldface to support his position - describing why and how the city will become more unsafe.
To be fair, his entire argument is based on his opinions and he doesn't use facts to support his position.
Hence, given the options, I would choose (E) without hesitation but yes, I wouldn't really call second boldface evidence.
Re: Letter to the editor: Proposition Q, a controversial measure on this [#permalink]
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