Politician: Democracy requires that there be no restrictions on the ability of citizens to share their ideas freely, ...

achalfp97 on April 26, 2020


Hi! I am a little confused as to what the conclusion is in this prompt. Why is it not the part that starts with “Therefore”? Thanks!

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Skylar on April 27, 2020

@achalfp97, happy to help!

The passage can be broken down as follows:
Premise: Democracy requires no restriction on citizens' ability to share their ideas freely, without fear of reprisal.
Subsidiary Conclusion/Premise: Therefore, the right to have private and unmonitored conversations is essential to democracy.
(Overall) Conclusion: For a government to monitor Internet conversations would thus setback democracy.

You are correct in identifying "therefore" as an indicator of a conclusion. However, "thus" is also a conclusion indicator.

Here, the second sentence is a conclusion that is supported by the first sentence. However, this second sentence in turn supports a larger conclusion- the last sentence. We call something that is both a conclusion and a premise that supports a larger conclusion a "subsidiary conclusion." That is what the second sentence is.

Does that make sense? Please let us know if you have any additional questions!

achalfp97 on April 27, 2020

Great! Thanks for the help, Skylar.