Capella University Sociology Marriage Ethical Question

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Prior to beginning work on this assignment, read Chapter 1 of the textbook. This chapter will introduce you to the basic form and subject matter of ethical reasoning and assist you as you select an ethical question, examine the context, issues, and arguments surrounding the question, and attempt to defend an answer to the question. 

Written assignment is a six-part exercise comprised of the following sections:

  • Ethical Question 
  • Introduction
  • Position Statement
  • Reasons in Support of Your Position
  • Opposing Position Statement
  • Reasons in Support of the Opposing Position

Marriage (Chapter 10) ( this is my ethical Question)

  • Should “marriage” be defined in a way that includes certain unions but excludes others?  What issues should be considered in establishing ethical distinctions here?
  • Is there a justification for the state to legally recognize marriages, or should marriage be only a private union?   
  • Should people who provide services for gay weddings (cakes, photography, etc.) be free to refuse to provide those services for heterosexual weddings?  

The assignment should be 500 words, written in essay form, with six clearly labeled sections as indicated below, and include a title page and reference page.

Part 2: Introduction

In this section of your paper, you should introduce the topic and question at issue by doing the following (not necessarily in this exact order):

  • Explain its relevance and importance.
  • Define any key terms and concepts.
  • Provide any relevant context and background information.
  • Briefly reference an idea, quote, or analysis of the issue that you have found in one of the required resources on the topic.  Required resources include the textbook chapter focused on that topic (6, 7, 8, 9, or 10), the “Primary Sources” listed at the end of Chapters 6-9, and the “readings listed under “Further Reading” at the end of each section in Chapter 10.

The introduction will be the longest section of this assignment and should be at least 300 words in one or two paragraphs. Place the introduction material under the Part 2: Introduction.

Part 3: Position Statement

Your work on the introduction section has likely unearthed various positions one might take on the ethical question you have chosen. In this section, you will formulate a position statement.

  • A position statement is a one sentence statement that articulates your position on the issue and directly answers the question you have raised. For example, if the question was, “What is a physician’s obligation with respect to telling the truth to his or her patients?” a position statement might be “A physician may never directly lie to a patient, but it may be moral for a physician to withhold information if the physician reasonably believes doing so directly benefits the patient.” A different position statement might be: “A physician may use any means necessary, including lying to a patient, if the physician believes that will produce the best overall results.” However, the following statement would not be a sufficient position statement: “A physician must always respect the rights of his or her patients.” The reason this is not a sufficient position statement is that it does not directly answer the question concerning truth telling.
  • Think of the position statement as the strongest claim you would make if you were a prosecuting attorney making your opening statement to a jury, where you want to state precisely and directly the position you want them to believe.

Place the position statement under the Part 3: Position Statement heading.

Part 4: Reasons in Support of Your Position

Now that you have articulated a position on the issue, write a short paragraph—just a few sentences—that presents and explains one or two of the strongest reasons in support of your position statement.

  • You want your supporting reason to explain why someone should support the position you are taking on the ethical question. A supporting reason is a consideration that helps to show why your position is stronger than another position.
  • One way to approach this is to imagine yourself in friendly conversation with someone who does not necessarily agree with your position (perhaps they disagree, or perhaps they are undecided). When you state your position, they might ask why you think that; the kind of response you would give is a supporting reason.
  • Supporting reasons can include many things including, but not limited to: an appeal to moral principles such as duty, justice, fairness and equality; the positive or negative effects of certain actions on policies; or a summary of facts, statistics or evidence and an explanation of how they support your view.

Place the supporting reason(s) under the Part 4: Reasons in Support of Your Position heading.

Part 5: Opposing Position Statement

Now that you have provided reasons to support your position statement, in this section you will take a step back from all of that and articulate a statement that expresses an opposing or contrary statement.

  • Think of the opposing position statement as the strongest claim you would make if you were the defense attorney making your opening statement to the jury immediately after they have heard the prosecutor’s statement.

Place the opposing position statement under the Part 5: Opposing Position Statement heading.

Part 6: Reasons in Support of the Opposing Position

In this section, write a short paragraph—just a few sentences—that presents and explains one or two of the strongest reasons in support of the opposing position statement.

  • A strong opposing reason is a reason anyone would need to consider, even if they do not agree with the opposing position.
  • In other words, do not simply contradict claims that you make in Part 4, especially factual claims! You should strive to identify and articulate considerations in support of the opposing position that you think are accurate and true, or at least plausible, even if you still believe your own position has the most support overall.
  • If the reason(s) in support of the opposing position are ones you consider obviously false or indefensible, you should look for better reasons.
  • Put yourself in the position of a defense attorney who has to make the best possible case to the jury in defense of his or her client.

Place the opposing reasons under the Part 6: Reasons in Support of the Opposing Position heading.

In your paper,

  • Identify the ethical question.
  • Introduce the topic and question.
  • Formulate a position statement.
  • Explain the strongest reasons in support of the position statement.
  • Formulate an opposing position statement.
  • Explain the strongest reasons in support of the opposing position statement.

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