21 TUE APR 04

Class 21 TUE APR 04

Riddle: Decide for Yourself

Where I first saw this image: https://www.bbc.com/news/uk-england-cornwall-56286719

Is the BBC website a credible source of news? Is it credible enough that you will accept this photograph has not been altered after it was taken? The optical phenomenon is described in ways that sound SORT OF credible, but if the BBC had published it on April 01, maybe we wouldn’t be so likely to accept its veracity. Read the article. Decide for yourself. Leave observations below.


Writing Advice

Just Passed Scenic Views

The problem with this sign should be obvious, but just to be sure, let’s talk about the serious mistake it makes.


Any writer making the same mistake would have to return her reader’s attention back to the material he’s already read and analyzed, draw his attention to things he might have missed, prepare him after the fact to receive information in the most effective way, and talk him out of conclusions he’s already drawn. All because she failed to put the sign AHEAD OF THE SCENIC VIEWS instead of behind them.

Version 1.
This paragraph makes the “Just Passed Scenic Views” mistake:

In a recent poll, 51% of Americans estimated that most or some of the food they eat is genetically modified (or contains GMOs) while the rest claimed that they eat “no GMOs” or “not too much.” Further, 65% of those who knowingly eat a fair amount of GMO food claim to have read a lot about genetically modified foods, while a whopping 75% of GMO-abstainers admit they have read nothing about these foods. You would think these results would be the other way around if modified organisms were as terrible as some perceive them to be. Instead, the poll revealed that most of the people who are consuming GMOs have gathered a lot of information on them, while 75% of the people who stay away from these foods admitted to reading absolutely nothing about them.

Version 2.
This paragraph tells readers to watch for “Scenic Views Ahead”:

Evidence shows that adults who are educated about genetically-modified foods (GMOs) accept their safety and consume them without hesitation. In a 2018 Pew Center Research Poll, 65% of respondents who knowingly eat a fair amount of GMO food report that they have read a lot about GMOs and feel well-informed. Those who admit ignorance about GMOs, on the other hand, fear and avoid them. Among GMO-abstainers, many of whom admit to having “health concerns” about the products, a whopping 75% admit they have read nothing about genetic modification or GMO foods.

Preview Rhetoric Unit:

(Prepare for Class TUE NOV 15)

Sources Unit—
(Prepare for Class TUE NOV 15)

  • Sources Workshop Number 2
    • Responsive to Student X’s trouble finding academic sources
    • Located in Course Documents/Research Tips/Sources Workshop

Writing Skills

Rebuttal Unit

For the sake of practice, let’s assume you are strongly in favor of nuclear power as an alternative to burning fossil fuels. Nuclear doesn’t burn petroleum, coal, or natural gas. It doesn’t emit carbon dioxide or methane. It is, by comparison to many alternatives, a clean and sustainable fuel for producing electricity. You’re writing a paper to promote new investment in nuclear power plants.

In your research, you run across an article by Bob Herbert in the New York Times that concerns you. Herbert sounds pretty knowledgeable, and you know he speaks compellingly for opponents of nuclear power in the US. How can you USE HIS ARTICLE in your Rebuttal Argument?

Does he make mistakes of logic? Does he apply his evidence inappropriately? Does he complain of cost overruns that don’t actually result in overly expensive power? Does he concentrate on one or two objections and ignore all the advantages of nuclear power? Does he set up a false choice between two options when there are other alternatives?

Read the article now:

If you encounter a paywall, find the full text (and more!) at:

Next Portfolio Task

18 Responses to 21 TUE APR 04

  1. ilovedunkinoverstarbucks says:

    -Camera captured a picture of a ship on the ocean
    -Ship appears to be floating in the sky due to a natural illusion
    Just passed scenic views:
    -Seeing a sign that tells you that you just passed scenic views seems pointless and rude because signs are supposed to tell you when scenic views are coming up
    -This relates to writing because you should show your argument in the beginning of the paragraph instead of at the end
    -You could lose readers by putting main ideas at the end because it is pointless to read the paragraph
    Not because:
    -Do not start with I don’t love you because
    -Instead start with I love you not just for your beauty
    -Which can be edited to I love you for your beauty and generous heart
    Editing for logic:
    -Be in command with your terms
    -Be clear with categories
    -Omit needless words


  2. zzbrd2822 says:

    In class today, we first discussed how an optical illusion caused a ship to appear as though it was hovering above the water. This is caused by specific atmospheric conditions that allow the light to be refracted. This causes a sort of mirage to appear. This might be difficult to trust since it is easy to fake or edit photos. We also discussed that street signs should tell you what is ahead, not what has already passed. This also applies to your writing as well. You should tell your reader what is coming up, instead of letting them pass your point and tell them what they missed. Make sure you clarify what it is that you are trying to prove. We looked at examples of paragraphs regarding GMOs that both properly and improperly tell the reader what is ahead. Next, we discussed writing skills that will make your writing better. Sentences that follow a negative verb with “because” create confusion for readers. Specific and straightforward claims without negatives are the best. Also, independent clauses emphasize claims, while dependent clauses minimize objections. Then, we discussed that you should make your contradictions clear if you aim to make a contradictory claim and cut out needless words. Last, we analyzed more short videos to improve Visual Rhetoric argument skills.


  3. levixvice says:

    Class Notes-11/11/2021
    Passing scenic views is a serious problem when you can’t get the reader on track with your essay and the promises that you made to the material. The reader is learning about it.
    Never delay the proof of why with evidence, but the writer must point out their stance first, then evidence later. Never use them because in a sentence that uses negative verbs, it will create confusion for the readers alone.
    Dependent clauses emphasize claims as a sentence by itself, whereas the dependent clauses minimize objections by requiring another sentence to support the other sentence. Editing logic must always provide a contradiction of both positive and negative aspects of the topic, never use wordy grammar mistakes that bore the reader and prevent them from reading more of them, and never be repetitive (fat must be cleaned out to be lean).


  4. Lunaduna says:

    Warm-up (Riddle)
    The temperature outside depicts the image of the ship as floating.
    Temperature inversion – “a reversal of the normal decrease of air temperature with altitude, or of water temperature with depth”

    “Just passed scenic views” (The signs are supposed to tell you when something is coming up, not something behind you.)
    You should not throw statistics in your paragraph first, you need to be able to keep your audience reading.

    Writing Skills
    – Not because
    Do not start a sentence with a negative verb, because it will create confusion for the readers.
    “I don’t love you because you’re beautiful” (Eliminate the negatives and the word “because” in your sentence) “I love you for your beauty and your generous heart.”
    – Mechanical Revisions
    The primary point you’re trying to provide is part of the independent clause. (The author’s sentence structure determines the rating of their claims).
    The thesis should be a sentence of its own or an independent clause.
    -Editing for logic
    Omit needless words.


  5. littlecow24 says:

    -From a specific angle, your vision can show optical illusions
    -We are so good at faking things, some optical illusions will immediately seem fake

    -“Just passed scenic views” is a bad sign, because it tells you what’s behind you and not what is ahead of you
    -Same for your essays: they will miss something important and won’t want to go back to look
    -Let your reader knows what’s coming and then fulfill your promise
    -You can’t count on the readers patience to keep reading through your evidence/statistics and if they get to the end of the paragraph when you state your claim, they may have their own POV

    -“I don’t love you because you’re beautiful” is a bad way to say something to your partner
    -Always start with the positive connotation “I love you…” and get rid of the negativity

    -Independent clauses help to emphasize claims
    -Having 2 important points; the 2nd claim presented is shown as the more important claim
    – “Since the program lowers the crime rate by giving free heroin to the addicts, it won’t help them end their addiction.”
    – “While the program doesn’t help addicts end their addiction, it reduces the crime rates in the city by providing the addicts free heroin in the cleanest way possible.”
    -You can make optimistic or pessimistic claims to the reader, but make sure that whichever way you want to go is what your independent clause shows

    -Omit needless words
    -The reader will become bored when there are too many words in a sentence that don’t contribute to the main point of that sentence


  6. kingofcamp says:

    English Comp II Lecture Notes (11.11.21)

    o Warm up—optical illusion
    o ship picture
    o real photo, rare phenomenon
    “Just Passed Scenic Views”
    o this applies to my writing
    o take those great ideas and GUIDE readers
    o Make your argument FIRST, hook your readers
    o then make your argument/add stats/information/etc.
    Writing Skills
    o “I don’t love you” / “I don’t love you because you’re beautiful”
    o What you mean, “I love you, but not because you’re beautiful.”
    o Better, “I love you not just for your beauty.”
    o BEST, “I love you for your beauty and your generous heart.”
     when you can (YOU CAN eliminate the “NOT BECAUSE”
    • causes death (in your sentence that is)
    • “NOT BEACAUSE” causes a barrier/ a misunderstanding
    • get rid of the negative declarations
    o strong, make your arguments here.
    o TAKE COMMAND OF YOUR TERMS (use them to your advantage)
    o Omit needless words
    o Reduce “clutter words”
    o determine what those “clutter words”


  7. minutemen14 says:

    Ship Picture
    -Phenomenon where light refraction makes image depict that ship is floating above the water
    -So easy to fake that we immediately dismiss it when in fact it is a true picture

    Just Passed Scenic Views
    -A sign like this is useless because the subject its referring to is already out of view
    -This is the same in writing, if you do not highlight and let your reader know of an important set of evidence of your argument then they will miss it and read past it without taking the time to really focus on your main idea.
    -Ending a paragraph with your main point is very hard to keep your reader engaged
    -It’s much better to begin the paragraph with what your are trying to get out of your claim and then use the rest of the paragraph to support it.

    Stay away from “do not, because” statements
    -Eliminate this because it confuses what you actually mean.
    -Putting a negative at the beginning often mutes the rest of sentence because the reader is fixated on what you did or didn’t do.


  8. mossmacabre says:

    In class today we learned about the independent clause and how we can use it to improve our writing. The independent clause can help make out intention with our writing clearer, which is important for an argument essay. Clarity is key, don’t use unnecessary words to pad your paper. It only clouds your original meaning. Omit needless words.


  9. friendoftacos says:

    When you work on a paper and collect evidence to share with your reader it is important to make sure your reader to not skip over important information. It is much easier to keep your readers on a hook and tell them the facts you have collected. Make sure everyone knows what you’re trying to prove in your writing before you present your evidence. It is a bad idea to follow a negative verb with because. The most specific straightforward sentence is much easier to understand then a sentence with negatives in it.


  10. Lily4Pres says:

    In a photograph of the horizon by the ocean. A ship was seemingly floating in mid-air. Of course, the ship was not actually floating. A mirage due to the temperature made it appear as if it was floating.
    Just Passed Scenic Views
    The sign is not helpful as it is used after the views have already occurred. This is analogous to writing evidence before introducing the evidence. Make your argument prior to your bulk of writing, use your sign before your views. Be the tour guide to let readers know what is coming to keep them engaged. Either put the conclusion of the paragraph first to introduce your evidence, or put your conclusion of the paragraph within the paragraph numerous times.
    Writing Skills
    Not Because: the use of not prior to a because sets up an incompatible sentence. Whenever you can, substitute a positive verb for the negative. “I don’t love you because you’re beautiful.” No, no, no. “I love you not just for your beauty.” Yes, yes, yes.
    Mechanical Revisions: Independent clauses emphasize claims, like the use of “since,” “although,” or “despite.” They set up a claim to push forward. Dependent clauses minimize objections, such as “while.”
    Editing for Logic: “Sleep is the most effective tool a person can utilize when wanting to improve the performance and efficiency of their brain.” => “Sleep improves the brain’s efficiency.” They say the same thing, cut the extra nonsensical words.
    Got some assignments to do as well.


  11. krackintheneck says:

    What I learned in class today:
    – tell your belief first then bring in your evidence to support your claim rather than giving a bunch of evidence then state your opinion on the given evidence
    – place conclusion first then use your evidence to back up those claims
    – when writing, make sure you substitute a “not ” verb to a positive verb
    – “not because” complete by the end of the day
    – an independent clause is the claim you want to emphasize
    – the dependent clause is the less important part of the claim?
    – these clauses help make our writing clear
    – when writing make sure I only use words that prove my claim and not a bunch of filler words


  12. frogs02 says:

    Today in class we talked about how “just pass scenic views” can be included in writing. We need to make sure readers don’t miss the information we try to get the reader to recognize. It tells you what is behind you, not in front of you. We talked about the phrase “I don’t love you because you’re beautiful.” This can be interpreted in different ways. You should try to start with a positive verb. If you don’t need a negative verb, then don’t use one. The claims need to be straightforward. We then talked about how independent clauses emphasize claims. Dependent clauses minimize objections. We then talked about how important it is to be extremely specific in visual arguments. There are extreme details and you have to go into descriptive detail on why these things are pictured.


  13. calamariii says:

    Laying out evidence first then explaining what it relates to or means it is likely that the reader has already made their decision on what the evidence means. Instead, prepping the reading for evidence they will be seeing helps to keep them engaged and agree with your usage of the evidence. Starting with a negative and then going into the negative ‘because’ creates confusion in the sentence and blurs the point of the sentence. When an independent claim is made, one of the claims in the sentence is made more important than the other. In a dependent claim is made, it is to minimize objections to that claim. Editing by shortening the length of the text by removing useless words and information creates writing that is less repetitive. Obmimtting the needless padding makes your writing more likely to keep the reader’s attention.


  14. strawberryfields4 says:

    “Just Passed Scenic Views”
    -It is not helpful to give evidence to the reader before telling them how it is relevant to your argument
    -Share your argument with the reader FIRST, then share evidence to support it
    -They may not be able to find the value of the evidence if they do not know what they are looking for
    -You are the tour guide and must let readers know what is coming, so they can look for it
    -Otherwise, they could miss important information
    -This will result in a much more educated reader who is more susceptible to persuasion
    -Evidence should be used to confirm the validity of the claims

    “Not Because”
    -“Not” followed by “because” creates confusing
    -Start with a positive declaration, rather than the negative
    -Claims that entirely eliminate the negative are best
    -Boldest and specific claims are the strongest

    Mechanical Revisions
    -Independent clauses emphasize claims
    -The dominant claim should be paired with the independent clause
    -Dependent clauses minimize objections

    Editing for Logic
    -Do not overpopulate claims with excess words
    -Omitting needless words creates room for the words that will keep readers interested


  15. ziggy026 says:

    People are very quick to assume something hard to believe is fake, even when they might be real. People also have too much security in what they think is real. Working against your interest is adding words that are unnecessary. Make every word matter. Be clear with your message and don’t use words and language that fog the message. You want to condense your writing. You don’t need any adjectives that don’t work towards confirming your message.


  16. “Hovering ship” was photographed
    Atmospheric conditions bend the light
    Is BBC a credible source?
    The world is not always what we see
    Writing Advice
    “Just passed scenic views” – it is too late to tell people after they have driven through the scenic area
    Act as a tour tour guide- let readers know what’s coming to keep them engaged and make sure they don’t miss the opportunity to agree with us.
    “I don’t love you because you’re beautiful” is not a good way to lead
    Replace negative verbs with positive verbs
    Independent clause
    Emphasizes claims
    Dependent clause
    Minimizes objections


    • davidbdale says:

      My favorite metaphor for essay writers: Act as a tour tour guide- let readers know what’s coming to keep them engaged and make sure they don’t miss the opportunity to agree with us.


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