In practice the government will have the last word on what an individual's rights are, because its police will do wha...

monicanimm on April 19, 2020

Can you explain why A and C are not the correct answer?

"But that does not mean that the government's view is necessarily the correct view; anyone who thinks it is must believe that persons have only such moral rights as the government chooses to grant, which means that they have no moral rights at all." For the last line of the question, I went straight to diagramming the last part of the sentence and then chose A. Can you explain why the answer is not A or C?

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shunhe on April 21, 2020

Hi @monicanimm,

Thanks for the question! Let’s take a look at the structure of this argument. We’re told that the government will have the last word on an individual’s rights. Why? The police do what the government says. The argument then continues: just because this is true, it doesn’t mean that the government’s view is necessarily correct, and people who think it is correct think that people only have moral rights as granted by the government, which would mean they have no moral rights at all.

Now we’re asked for the conclusion of this argument, which as you know is (B). Let’s take a look at why (A) is wrong first. (A) tells us that individuals have no rights at all unless the government says that they do. The conclusion actually disagrees with this statement. The author is saying that some people who hold one belief also hold the belief expressed in (A), but the author herself doesn’t actually agree with (A), and so clearly wouldn’t conclude it. We also know that the actual conclusion is introduced by “but,” signaling disagreement with the opinion expressed in the first sentence, which is related to the opinion expressed in (A). (C) is wrong for similar reasons as (A), except no one really says (C) at all. The author doesn’t come out and make an argument for it, and neither do the people who the author agrees with.
Hope this helps! Feel free to ask any other questions that you might have.