Sarah: When commercial fishing boats with permits to fish for certain species accidentally catch a type of fish for w...

Hunter on August 25, 2019


I ended up picking C even though I didn't know what it meant, and because I thought I could eliminate D because of the word probably. How do you know right away that D is not too strong for this type of MBT question? I thought that since it was only probably going to have a negative consequence, that contending there would be a negative consequence was too strong. Also, what does C mean? I thought accidents was being alluded to. Since the first speaker used the accidents to support her conclusion, I thought C was an accurate description.

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Victoria on August 25, 2019

Hi @Hunter,

Firstly, this is not a "Must Be True" question. We are looking for the answer choice which best sums up the technique used by Amar to respond to Sarah, making this a "Methods of Reasoning" question.

Sarah argues that "fishing permits should be altered so that fishers can keep fish caught accidentally." Why? Because when commercial fishing boats catch fish species for which they do not have a permit, they must throw the species back and many of these discarded fish do not survive. Sarah says that this is a "very wasteful practice."

Amar responds by highlighting that implementing Sarah's recommendation "would probably lead to a lot more 'accidents." In this way, they are suggesting that implementing Sarah's recommendation would provide an incentive for fishermen to "accidentally" catch species for which they do not have a permit as they would be allowed to keep these species and profit from them.

In this way, C is incorrect because Amar is not strengthening the case for Sarah's recommendation. Instead, they are suggesting that this recommendation has the potential for negative consequences, weakening the case for Sarah's recommendation.

D is correct because Amar states that Sarah's recommendation (to make "it legal to keep those fish") has an important negative consequence ("probably lead to a lot more 'accidents'). You are right that the word 'probably' does have the potential to weaken answer choice D, but the negative consequence highlighted by Amar could also be the increased likelihood of an increase in 'accidents.'

Hope this helps! Please let us know if you have any further questions.