Mike Adams

Dear Professor Snider (csnider@csulb.edu):

Someone recently sent me a copy of the guidelines for a research paper that you require of your students at California State University, Long Beach. According to your website, the purpose of the paper is ?to persuade or at least to create tolerance for your point of view on a controversial issue; also to acknowledge the opposing side of the issue.?

Below the basic requirements for the paper, you have listed a number of suggested ?Subjects for an Argument Paper.? Below I have listed some of my favorite entries:

Energy? A related topic is Dick Cheney's secret conference on energy policy.  Why hasn't the administration revealed who participated and should it reveal this information?  Also important is the fact that, as Kevin Phillips writes, "four generations of the [Bush] dynasty have chased [oil] profits through cozy ties with Mideast leaders, spinning webs of conflicts of interest"?

The Economy? Under President Clinton, the Federal Government had a handle on the national debt.  Now the Bush administration is passing that debt on to the post-baby-boom generation?

Birth Control: Should the so-called "morning-after" contraceptive pills (pills that prevent fertilized eggs from implantation) be more readily available to all, whether they can afford them or not and regardless of age?  Of course, in your paper you would need to state your position and support it while acknowledging the opposing position.  (You cannot argue that such pills amount to an abortion?).

Should Justice Sandra Day O'Connor have been impeached for her partisan, political actions in the Bush v. Gore case of December 2000 (she is reported to have expressed a desire to retire but would do so only if a Republican were president?)?  What about Justice Scalia, whose son worked for the law firm of the lawyer who argued for Bush before the Supreme Court, or Justice Thomas, whose wife was part of an organization selecting people to work in a potential Bush administration?

George W. Bush's time in the National Guard presents important questions about the character of a man who has sent hundreds of Americans to their deaths in war and killed and maimed untold thousands of others?

Breaking a campaign promise, Bush has reversed rules to limit industrial carbon dioxide emissions into the atmosphere?Do you agree or disagree with this decision?

Mike Adams

Mike Adams is a criminology professor at the University of North Carolina Wilmington and author of Letters to a Young Progressive: How To Avoid Wasting Your Life Protesting Things You Don't Understand.