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Writing Assignment #2: Analysis

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In the past year, media in the United States has focused on incidents in which blacks have been detained and lost their lives while being detained or held by law enforcement. For example, in July of 2014, New York police officers approached Eric Garner and accused him of selling single cigarettes; a minor offense. When Garner responded that he was not selling cigarettes and that officers were harassing him, several officers attempted to subdue him and one resorted to placing Garner in what witnesses called a chokehold. The interaction was captured on video by a witness/independent bystander. As the video shows, although Garner told officers he could not breathe, they continued to hold him down until he lost consciousness and died. Despite laws against officers’ use of the chokehold and the fact that the city of New York provided Garner’s family with a $5.9 million settlement, no indictments were filed against the officers. Many today continue to question whether the officers violated Eric Garner’s civil rights. Garner’s case is not unique, however, and a growing number of similar cases in the media have led to significant outcry and the development of organizations such as #BlackLivesMatter. Some suggest the US legal system is not only corrupt, but also racist; many have called for better training and greater scrutiny of police procedures, while others have demanded officers face murder charges in more recent cases in which officers have taken the lives of blacks.

Writing Assignment Two asks students to choose a recent report in a major US newspaper in which large factions of US society contend the civil rights of an African American have been violated by civil servants (police, lawyers, judges, corrections officers, social workers, etc.). Using a major US newspaper, students will locate an article on a recent incident and then analyze the actions of the victim and civil servants and the outcomes of the incident. After investigating the situation, the student will explain whether the rights of the individual were violated, and whether the legal system took the appropriate actions (if any) to ensure justice for society and safeguard citizens from future injustices.

Writing Assignment #2: Analysis    English 105 – Fall 2015

In the past year, media in the United States has focused on incidents in which blacks have been detained and lost their lives while being detained or held by law enforcement. For example, in July of 2014, New York police officers approached Eric Garner and accused him of selling single cigarettes; a minor offense. When Garner responded that he was not selling cigarettes and that officers were harassing him, several officers attempted to subdue him and one resorted to placing Garner in what witnesses called a chokehold.  The interaction was captured on video by a witness/independent bystander. As the video shows, although Garner told officers he could not breathe, they continued to hold him down until he lost consciousness and died. Despite laws against officers’ use of the chokehold and the fact that the city of New York provided Garner’s family with a $5.9 million settlement, no indictments were filed against the officers. Many today continue to question whether the officers violated Eric Garner’s civil rights. Garner’s case is not unique, however, and a growing number of similar cases in the media have led to significant outcry and the development of organizations such as #BlackLivesMatter.  Some suggest the US legal system is not only corrupt, but alsoracist; many have called for better training and greater scrutiny of police procedures, while others have demanded officers face murder charges in more recent cases in which officers have taken the lives of blacks.

Writing AssignmentTwo asks students tochoosea recent report in a major US newspaper in which large factions of US society contend the civil rights of an African American have been violated by civil servants (police, lawyers, judges, corrections officers, social workers, etc.).  Using a major US newspaper, students will locate an article on a recent incident and then analyze the actionsof the victim and civil servants and the outcomes of the incident. After investigating the situation, the student will explain whether the rights of the individual were violated, and whether the legal systemtook the appropriate actions (if any) to ensure justice for society and safeguard citizens from future injustices.

Use of Sources:
This paper will focus on developing your ability to utilize reputable sources to support your observations and opinions; as such, your paper will introduce, paraphrase, summarize and directly quote according to MLA conventions from
1)    a recent article in a major newspaper publicizing the incident
2)    two scholarly sources located in the WSU journal databases
WSU Library:http://libraries.wsu.edu/

Paper Length and Voice:
The paper will be at least 1200 (about 3 ½ to 4 pages using the MLA formatting guidelines in the syllabus), but no more than 1500 words. The final version of this paper will be in the third person, neutral voice.

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