I need help writing three different versions of a main claim, can someone help me please? Thanks.
Using three articles from the text book, "They say, I say" the three articles are below:
1.) RADLEY BALKO, “What You Eat Is Your Business” Page 395.
2.) Susie Orbach, “Fat Is a Feminist Issue.” Page 448.
3.) Michelle Obama, “Remarks to the NAACP National Convention” Page 417
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Radley Balko is a policy analyst with the Cato Institute, a libertarian public policy center in Washington, D.C. Libertarians, of course, are firm believers in minimal government involvement in virtually all facets of life, from the economy to social issues like abortion. Susie Orbach is a British psychotherapist and social critic who can, reasonably, be categorized as a feminist. Michelle Obama is the First Lady of the United States, the title traditionally applied to presidential spouses, as there has to be a female president. Many First Ladies adopt, upon entering the White House, an issue that they will advance as an advocate using their status. Laura Bush focused on literacy; Hillary Clinton took the lead as President Bill Clinton’s spouse on the issue of health care reform; Michelle Obama chose to focus on the problem of child obesity. The purpose of the exercise is to illustrate how the same issue – nutrition and obesity – is approached from three different perspectives.
On July 12, 2010, Michelle Obama addressed the national gathering of the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People, the NAACP. The topic of her speech was “the epidemic of childhood obesity.” Ms. Obama has endured considerable criticism for her stance on this issue, not because people disagree that childhood obesity is a major problem, but because of the success she has had increasing the role of the federal government in determining what kinds of lunches are served in public schools today. In effect, wide-spread complaints about the quality and portions of the food served to school children has been deemed by many parents and critics as inadequate and unappetizing. In her address before the NAACP, Ms. Obama described the components of her campaign targeting childhood obesity, called “Let’s Move”:
“The first, we’re working to give parents the information they need to make healthy decisions for their families.
“For example, we’re working with the FDA and the food industry to provide better labeling, something simple, so folks don’t have to spend hours squinting at labels, trying to figure out whether the food they’re buying is healthy or not.
“Our new health care legislation requires chain restaurants to post the calories in the food they serve so that parents have the information they need to make healthy choices for their kids in restaurants.
“And we’re working with doctors and pediatricians to ensure that they routinely screen our children for obesity.”
Ms. Obama’s program to address childhood obesity is meritorious. A problem, however, in the eyes of Radley Balko, is that Ms. Obama is using her power as First Lady to inject the government into the issue – a practice totally anathema to the Cato Institute, which, as noted, opposes most government involvement in the affairs of the populace, or, as Balko noted in his article What You Eat is Your Business, Ms. Obama’s programs are “bringing government between you and your waistline.” Balko is a staunch opponent of government programs designed to compel a more nutritious diet and health lifestyle. It’s not that he doesn’t agree that obesity is a problem, it’s just that he doesn’t believe the government is or knows the answer. As he wrote in his article:
“This is the wrong way to fight obesity. Instead of manipulating or intervening in the array of food options available to American consumers, our government ought to be working to foster a sense of responsibility in and ownership of our own health and well-being. But we’re doing just the opposite.”
Now, in the opening comments of her speech, Michelle Obama good-naturedly recognized the organization’s chairwoman as follows:
“I want to start by thanking Chairman Roslyn Brock, beautiful woman, for that very kind introduction. And I mentioned to her, I said, her mother’s hot. She’s gorgeous. Good genes.”
This seemingly innocuous boilerplate comment is interesting if viewed through the prism of Susie Orbach’s analyses of the social and cultural injustices that condemn females to lives of subservience, if not in the sense of gender inequality in the workplace – which she would argue still exists – with regard to fundamental issues of health and mental well-being. In her book Fat is a Feminist Issue, Orbach takes aim at the social and cultural pressures on women to be thin. A girl’s self-image involves certain prescribed characteristics, including with regard to her figure. “For many women,” Orbach argues, “compulsive eating and being fat have become one way to avoid being marketed or seen as the ideal woman.” A “cultural preoccupation with food and body image” have forced women into an uncomfortable and physically and emotionally unhealthy lifestyle. To Orbach, “fat” is a word “heavily laden with negative value and discomforting images.” In her book, she wrote:
“Becoming fat is . . . a woman’s response to the first step in the process of fulfilling a prescribed social role which requires her to shape herself to an externally imposed image in order to catch a man.”
“For a mother, everybody else’s needs come first. . .Media preoccupation with good housekeeping and, particularly, with good food and good feeding, serves as a yardstick by which to measure the mother’s ever-failing performance.”
Society’s emphasis on preconceived ideas of how women should appear have had a deleterious effect on female self-image and on female self-preservation. The cosmetic surgery industry has thrived on this phenomenon, as has the cosmetics industry and the diet industry all of which exploit unjust expectations. How Orbach would receive Ms. Obama’s seemingly harmless comment on the NAACP chairwoman’s physical appearance is unknown. The First Lady’s comment, however, is ironic in the context of a discussion regarding artificial conceptions of physical beauty.
Placing these three disparate perspective side-by-side and conceptualizing a “main claim” that can be expressed to reflect those disparate perspectives can appear something like this:
Balko: Childhood obesity is a problem, but the government has no legitimate place dictating to the public how and what it should eat.
Obama: Childhood obesity is a major problem, and the government must take the lead in addressing it through legislation that compels compliance by the food industry.
Orbach: Obesity is a health problem, but women should be free to gain excess weight as a reaction to society’s unjust and irresponsible expectations of how a woman should look.
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