Paper 2 is a thesis-driven, source-supported Academic Editorial for the Inlander (Links to an external site.) on the topic of education in Spokane County or beyond. Your Paper must follow the Classical Argument Structure outlined in the Lecture Notes, be written for the Inlander‘s readership, and include 3 academic/scholarly sources. 2 of these sources you will need to find on your own using the library databases. 1 of your sources should be from this list:
- The Problem We All Live With – This American Life
- Confronting Class in the Classroom – by Bell Hooks
- The Curse of America’s Illogical School Day Schedule – Joe Pinsker
- Boys Don’t Read Enough – Alia Wong
- Educated – Tara Westover, Chapter, 1-12
Congratulations! You’ve been hired by the Inlander (Links to an external site.) to write an Academic Editorial covering an education-related issue from the list below.
The Rhetoric Notes in the Lecture Notes for this module should be a huge help, as should the Audience Analysis you did for the Discussion Board. The rhetorical situation for this assignment is sort of tricky in that it’s a dual-audience circumstance: the first audience is the editors, to get them to publish your Paper; the second audience is the Inlanderreadership, the audience who will read the Paper once it’s published.
Your paper will only use the Classical Argument Structure. You are expected to follow it. See the Lecture Notes. Your Paper must include two academic/scholarly sources. You are expected to use one of the sources from this module, but you will need to incorporate two more that you find on your own from the SFCC Library databases. Your sources can be used as support for your paper or in your Counterargument or Refutation.
The List of Issues is not exhaustive (see the last bullet), but you should have enough of a range of issues to create a solid argument that fits with the Inlander’s unique role in the Inland Pacific Northwest.
List of Issues:
- Lack of resources in Spokane Public Schools
- Single-sex classes
- Is the traditional education system working?
- Standardized testing
- Free speech and college campuses
- Others options? check with me first before venturing to a non-listed topic
- Approximately 3 to 5 pages in length
- Typed and double spaced, using Times New Roman font, size 12 font, 1-inch margins
- Include a title that announces topic and hints at thesis (and have an actual firm thesis!)
- Integrate and Cite two outside sources in MLA
- Include a correctly formatted Works Cited page
- The Works Cited page does not count toward the required page length.
- Worth 250 points
Here is an example.
Please note that this paper is not 100% perfect and merely offers you an example as to how a former student approached this assignment. Note, this student wrote to the Inlander, but the topic was food in Spokane not Education.
Paper 2 –Example A
City-Owned Vending Machines for Community Gain
Today in America, over one third of the population struggles with obesity. Another third is considered to be overweight. Because obesity may lead to type 2 diabetes, heart disease, and dangerously high blood pressure, most Americans understand that this is a health crisis that must be addressed immediately. The problem is, nobody has conceived any solution to successfully slow the growth of obesity. One solution should be addressing unhealthy habits in individual communities. If each state, county, and city had their own initiatives in place, Americans might be able to turn the tide against unhealthy eating and lack of exercise. In Spokane county, one of the largest issues citizens face is availability of healthy foods. America’s growing rate of obesity is largely due to the efficiency and cost of fast food vendors. The city of Spokane should counter obesity rates by providing city-owned vending machines with healthier, more cost-efficient options.
Something that is often overlooked when it comes to evaluating obesity rates in re America is the cost of healthy vs. unhealthy foods. In a recent study conducted at Harvard University, researchers claim, “Healthier diet patterns—for example, diets rich in fruits, vegetables, fish, and nuts—cost significantly more than unhealthy diets (for example, those rich in processed foods, meats, and refined grains) are more expensive. On average, a day’s worth of the healthiest diet patterns cost about $1.50 more per day than the least healthy ones” (Dwyer). And while $1.50 does not seem like too big of a number, it makes a huge difference for someone who is living on a low income and/or having to support a family.
When people cannot afford healthy foods, they are forced to buy unhealthy processed foods at the grocery store or eat out at fast food or takeout places which are typically extremely unhealthy. In a 2016 presentation at the American Heart Association’s Epidemiology/Lifestyle meeting, it was reported that “a 10% drop in prices [of healthy foods] could prevent 515,000 heart related deaths and 675,000 heart attacks and strokes by 2035” (Park). It is impertinent that citizens of Spokane County are able to access low-cost healthy foods. Doing so may literally save their lives. Cost efficiency directly factors into the obesity rates in America. If Spokane citizens had available low-cost healthy foods, they would have the option of eating healthy on the same budget they were operating under before.
Another issue is the proximity of healthy foods to homes and workplaces. Often, people who work long hours or need to make meals in a hurry rely on eating out. If there are no healthy food options near them, their only option is to eat a less healthy meal. Fast food is never known for being healthy but it is known for being cheap and readily available when on a work break or on the way to school/work. Even those who would otherwise choose to eat healthy are sometimes limited to their neighborhood availability. By having these vending machines placed around the city, more workers and families will have access to healthy foods when they need it.
In a recent USC study, Nathalie Oexle et al claims, “people living in areas with a wealth of unhealthy fast-food options may show higher levels of fast-food consumption, a factor that often coincides with being overweight or obese.” Information exists which shows that if Spokane were to offer healthy food options, people would on average eat better and remain in good health. If healthier food options were available to these Americans, the country would be able to begin fighting back against rising obesity rates. Spokane should not wait to take initiative on this issue like it has been for years. The city must provide options for all its citizens.
Some would argue that this idea has a major flaw which is the cost vs. the benefits of these city-owned vending machines. They don’t do anything to quell the expansion of fast food restaurants and citizens will be free to make the same unhealthy eating choices even when they are given variety. In “Obesity Prevention at the Point of Purchase,” Deborah A. Cohen argues that today “point of purchase strategies frequently work through non-cognitive processes thus, people are often unable to recognize and resist them. Because people lack insight into how marketing practices interfere with their ability to routinely eat healthy, balanced diets, they often make poor choices.” It seems like it would be impractical to provide the machines when there is no guarantee people will choose them over the persuasive, overly-marketed fast food options. When people choose to return to fast food venues instead of the vending machines, the city will realize it has lost taxpayer money with no positive outcome. Those who would argue the vending machines would not work would argue that the city should take a different stance to promote healthy eating such as restricting fast foods advertising powers.
This argument, however, is flawed in that it does not take into account the amount of money and the high impact these machines would create. Obesity is reached through negative habits including the consuming of unhealthy foods. But unhealthy eating habits formed by people are often a result of ignorance rather than willfulness to eat healthy. In a 2012 pool, researchers found that “76% agree that ever-changing nutritional guidance makes it hard to know what to believe. And when it comes to making decisions about food, consumers today rely most often on their own research rather than third-party experts” (“Americans Want”). If the city could put only foods that they know are healthy into the vending machines, people would be sure to eat healthy at the machines and they would be able to make better informed decisions about foods in the future.
In the context of a city budget, a dozen vending machines is a relatively small amount. By allocating some funds to the new initiative, the city would be addressing a public health issue in a simple, cost effective way. Those who need to eat in a time crunch are often drawn in by the rapidly prepared fast foods available almost everywhere throughout the city. While these restaurants are stationed in many spots around Spokane, it is nearly impossible to find places with healthy options. Where they are found, often the prices are extremely high with a salad ranging anywhere from 5-10 dollars. This is not something that is attainable for low-income people and families. Providing these machines around town is the best way to combat the always-growing fast food industry. When health-conscious people have access to cheap, local healthy foods, they will choose to utilize this option. And by charging an affordable but slightly raised price for the food options, the city will make more money off these machines which they can use for other initiatives. Overall, this initiative would be good for community health and city revenue.
The city of Spokane must provide city-owned vending machines for its citizens in order to fight the growing rates of obesity. This is a serious public health issue that the country as a whole has not done enough to address. As a result, two thirds of Americans are experiencing unhealthy weights or obesity. The best way to fight this growing issue is in individual states, counties, and cities. Communities must be evaluating how to quell obesity rates on a city-wide level. Doing this will result in heathier habits and weights for all Americans.
“Americans Want to Eat Healthier, but Aren’t Sure How.” Institute of Food Technologists, 25
May 2012, www.ift.org/food-technology/daily-news/2012/may/25/americans-want-to- (Links to an external site.)eat-healthier-but-arent-sure-how.aspx.
Cohen, Deborah A. “Obesity Prevention at the Point of Purchase.” US National Library of
Medicine National Institutes of Health, 22 Feb. 2016. PubMed.
Dwyer, Marge. “Eating Healthy vs. Unhealthy Diet Costs about $1.50 More per Day.” News,
Harvard School of Public Health, 13 Jan. 2014, www.hsph.harvard.edu/news/press- (Links to an external site.)releases/healthy-vs-unhealthy-diet-costs-1-50-more/.
Oexle, Nathalie, et al. “Neighborhood Fast Food Availability and Fast Food Consumption.”
Appetite, U.S. National Library of Medicine, 1 Sept. 2015, www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4500533/.
“Overweight & Obesity Statistics.” National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney
Diseases, U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, 1 Oct. 2012, www.niddk.nih.gov/health-information/health-statistics/overweight-obesity.
Park, Alice. “Cheaper Health Foods Could Save Millions of Lives.” Time, Time, 1 Mar. 2016,