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Re: The cities with the densest population have the highest ratio of polic [#permalink]
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Dear Friends,

Here is a detailed explanation of this question-

Bunuel wrote:
The cities with the densest population have the highest ratio of police officers to citizens. Such cities also have the lowest rates of property crime without contact between perpetrator and victim. Thus maintaining a high ratio of police officers to citizens can serve as an effective deterrent to at least certain kinds of property crime.

Which of the following, if true, most seriously weakens the argument above?

(A) The quality of training that police receive varies from city to city.
(B) High population density itself makes it difficult to commit a property crime that involves no contact between perpetrator and victim.
(C) Many nonviolent crimes in large cities are drug-related.
(D) A majority of the perpetrators of property crimes in densely populated cities are not apprehended by the police.
(E) Property crimes without contact between perpetrator and victim represent only a small proportion of overall crime.


Mind Map: Densely filled cities have highest police to citizen ratio -> they also have low rate of property crime without contact between both parties -> so, high police density can reduce some kinds of property crime.

Missing link: Between low property crime of certain types and the deduction that high police density can deter some kinds of property crime.

Expectation from the correct answer choice: To suggest that high police density is not the reason for low rates of certain kinds of property crime.

Choice A: This answer choice goes beyond the scope of the argument by focusing on police training; moreover, it does not talk about property crime at all; as this answer choice does not weaken the conclusion, it is not a fine answer choice.
Choice B: This answer choice provides an alternate reason (than high police density) for the low crime rate; by suggesting that the high population density in itself makes it tough for offenders to commit property crime without contact between perpetrator and victim, this answer choice shifts the cause away from police density; hence, it weakens the argument and is, therefore, a fine answer choice.
Choice C: This answer choice goes beyond the scope of the argument by focusing on other crimes whereas the argument is clearly focusing on “certain kinds of property crimes”. Moreover, the argument is referring to “densely populated” cities and not large cities. This answer choice is incorrect as it does not weaken the causal connection between high police density and low crime rates of certain kinds.
Choice D: Trap. The majority of the perpetrators of property crimes may not be involved with these “certain kinds of property crime” under discussion in the argument. Furthermore, this answer choice, by suggesting that perpetrators of property crimes are so bold, contradicts the premise about low crime rates on the first place.
Choice E: Whether the kinds of crime under discussion represent a small or large proportion of the overall crime does not help or hurt the argument as the focus is on the reason for the low rate of the kinds of crime and not the magnitude of their consequence. This answer choice does not make any relevant point to weaken the argument that high police to citizen ratio can deter “certain kinds of property crime”; hence, it is not the correct answer choice.

Hence, B is the best answer choice.

To understand the concept of “Characteristics of a Weakening Statement on GMAT Critical Reasoning”, you may want to watch the following video (~3 minutes):



All the best!
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Re: The cities with the densest population have the highest ratio of polic [#permalink]
Hello from the GMAT Club VerbalBot!

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Re: The cities with the densest population have the highest ratio of polic [#permalink]
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