Discussion Question: Who’s to Say Who is Right or Wrong

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Hello, This is discussion question and is nothing fancy. Question and answer format. It is due tomorrow. 

Discussion Point:

* Imagine
a teacher returns an assignment to you with a grade of “F.” 

* When
you ask for an explanation, you are told that, frankly, the teacher does not
believe that people “like
you”
(e.g., women, Christians, African Americans) are capable of doing good work in
this field (e.g., science, engineering, math, finance). 

* When
you object that this is unfair and wrong, the teacher offers a relativist
explanation. “Fairness
is a matter of personal opinion,” the
professor explains. 

* “Who
determines what is fair or unfair?” you
ask. 

* Your
teacher claims that his view of what is fair is as valid as any other.  Because everyone is entitled to their own
personal opinion, he is entitled to fail you since, in his personal opinion,
you do not deserve to succeed.

Questions to be answered:

  1. Would you accept this explanation and be content with your failing grade?  If not, how would you defend your own, opposing view? 
  2. Are there any relevant facts on which you would rely on to support your claim?
  3. What values are involved in this dispute? 
  4. What alternatives are available to you?
  5. Besides you and your teacher, are there any other people who are or should be involved in this situation, any other stakeholders?
  6. What reasons would you offer to the dean in an appeal to have the grade changed?
  7. What consequences would this professor’s practice have on education? 
  8. If reasoning and logical persuasion do not work, how else could this dispute be resolved?
  9. Other than reasoning and logical persuasion, what is the major alternative for resolving conflicts?  Of course, the most common alternatives have been force and violence.

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