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# The rate of violent crime in this state is up 35 percent

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The rate of violent crime in this state is up 35 percent [#permalink]

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29 Oct 2012, 23:07
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The rate of violent crime in this state is up 35 percent from last year. The fault lies entirely in our court system. Recently our judges' sentences have been so lenient that criminals can now do almost anything without fear of a long prison term.

The argument above would be weakened if it were true that:

(A) 85 percent of the other states in the nation have lower crime rates than does this state.
(B) white collar crime in this state has also increased by over 25 percent in the last year.
(C) 35 percent of the police in this state have been laid off in the last year due to budget cuts.
(D) polls show that 65 percent of the population in this state oppose capital punishment.
(E) the state has hired 25 new judges in the last year to compensate for deaths and retirements

Can you please share your thought processes on this, how to arrive at the answer?

Many thanks.
[Reveal] Spoiler: OA
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Re: The rate of violent crime in this state is up 35 percent [#permalink]

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29 Oct 2012, 23:22
elegan wrote:
The rate of violent crime in this state is up 35 percent from last year. The fault lies entirely in our court system. Recently our judges' sentences have been so lenient that criminals can now do almost anything without fear of a long prison term.

The argument above would be weakened if it were true that:

(A)
85 percent of the other states in the nation have lower crime rates than does this state.
(B)

white collar crime in this state has also increased by over 25 percent in the last year.
(C)

35 percent of the police in this state have been laid off in the last year due to budget cuts.
(D)

polls show that 65 percent of the population in this state oppose capital punishment.
(E)

the state has hired 25 new judges in the last year to compensate for deaths and retirements

Can you please share your thought processes on this, how to arrive at the answer?

Many thanks.

The argument is that increase in crime is due to lenient sentences. To weaken the argument we need to find an alternate reason for increase in crime.
Option C does exactly that. If there is a significant lay off in police force, it would mean law enforcement would suffer, resulting in increase crimes.

Ans C it is.
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Last edited by Vips0000 on 29 Oct 2012, 23:28, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: The rate of violent crime in this state is up 35 percent [#permalink]

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29 Oct 2012, 23:23
Conclusion : Crime up due to judges being leniant.

A statement to weaken can provide an alternate cause for the result. C clearly works to serve this purpose. Hence, answer should be C.

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Re: The rate of violent crime in this state is up 35 percent [#permalink]

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30 Oct 2012, 00:00
What I found here was that 35pc decrease in police force resulted in 35pc increase in violent crime.

Almost seemed to me like a red herring or a cause/effect (which is true), but the percentages through me off the track a little.
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Re: The rate of violent crime in this state is up 35 percent [#permalink]

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17 Nov 2012, 07:51
elegan wrote:
What I found here was that 35pc decrease in police force resulted in 35pc increase in violent crime.

Almost seemed to me like a red herring or a cause/effect (which is true), but the percentages through me off the track a little.

Hi Elegan,

They key to do well in Strengthen, Weaken, and Assumption questions is to focus on Conclusion and see what all evidence/ Facts in the statement proves or supports the conclusion. \
Then find your own answer before looking at the answer choices as to what can actually weaken /strengthen the question or what are the assumption the argument has made to make the conclusion.

This process will improve your accuracy and timing as well.

Suggest you ti give it a try to 5-10 question. You will see the difference.
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Re: The rate of violent crime in this state is up 35 percent [#permalink]

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19 Nov 2012, 04:50
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Vips0000 wrote:
elegan wrote:
The rate of violent crime in this state is up 35 percent from last year. The fault lies entirely in our court system. Recently our judges' sentences have been so lenient that criminals can now do almost anything without fear of a long prison term.

The argument above would be weakened if it were true that:

(A)
85 percent of the other states in the nation have lower crime rates than does this state.
(B)

white collar crime in this state has also increased by over 25 percent in the last year.
(C)

35 percent of the police in this state have been laid off in the last year due to budget cuts.
(D)

polls show that 65 percent of the population in this state oppose capital punishment.
(E)

the state has hired 25 new judges in the last year to compensate for deaths and retirements

Can you please share your thought processes on this, how to arrive at the answer?

Many thanks.

The argument is that increase in crime is due to lenient sentences. To weaken the argument we need to find an alternate reason for increase in crime.
Option C does exactly that. If there is a significant lay off in police force, it would mean law enforcement would suffer, resulting in increase crimes.

Ans C it is.

@Vips: Just an example of 'arguments are not perfect':

(C) 35 percent of the police in this state have been laid off in the last year due to budget cuts.

You say (C) WILL weaken the argument and hence is the answer. I will say 'C CAN weaken the argument and hence is the answer.

Since 35% of the force was laid off, there are fewer policemen around and hence security is lax. This could be another reason for increased crime. Hence (C) could weaken the argument.

On the other hand, what if I tell you that the police force laid off consisted of just the bureaucracy or these were the people who harbored criminals. Or that the rest of the 65% force is working double shifts whole heartedly to retain their jobs. This could actually strengthen/have no effect on the argument since the police force is more efficient after it was cleaned up.

The intent of the option is obviously to weaken it but you could weaken or strengthen with more data. Hence do not look for foolproof options.
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Re: The rate of violent crime in this state is up 35 percent [#permalink]

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19 Nov 2012, 06:57
VeritasPrepKarishma wrote:
@Vips: Just an example of 'arguments are not perfect':
(C) 35 percent of the police in this state have been laid off in the last year due to budget cuts.
You say (C) WILL weaken the argument and hence is the answer. I will say 'C CAN weaken the argument and hence is the answer.
Since 35% of the force was laid off, there are fewer policemen around and hence security is lax. This could be another reason for increased crime. Hence (C) could weaken the argument.
On the other hand, what if I tell you that the police force laid off consisted of just the bureaucracy or these were the people who harbored criminals. Or that the rest of the 65% force is working double shifts whole heartedly to retain their jobs. This could actually strengthen/have no effect on the argument since the police force is more efficient after it was cleaned up.
The intent of the option is obviously to weaken it but you could weaken or strengthen with more data. Hence do not look for foolproof options.

Point taken Karishma. I know which post you are referring to
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Re: The rate of violent crime in this state is up 35 percent [#permalink]

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18 May 2014, 08:00
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Re: The rate of violent crime in this state is up 35 percent [#permalink]

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26 Sep 2015, 08:14
Hello from the GMAT Club VerbalBot!

Thanks to another GMAT Club member, I have just discovered this valuable topic, yet it had no discussion for over a year. I am now bumping it up - doing my job. I think you may find it valuable (esp those replies with Kudos).

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Re: The rate of violent crime in this state is up 35 percent   [#permalink] 26 Sep 2015, 08:14
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# The rate of violent crime in this state is up 35 percent

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