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PrepTest 73, Logical Reasoning 2, Question 2


Question two. When a question asks you to justify the reasoning in an argument, you are doing a strengthen question. On a strengthen question, your job is to find something that will support the arguments assumptions. The things the arguments doesn't say explicitively that nevertheless have to be true in order for the evidence to be able to prove the conclusion.

Of course in order to find the assumption you have to understand the argument which means knowing the argument conclusion and it's evidence. This argument's conclusion is actually split up across the first sentence and the question stem. There are some residents of a coastal community that are resisting the efforts of one family to build a large house on that family's land.

And we're being asked to justify the reasoning of the residents opposed to building the house. So in other words, the conclusion is the house shouldn't be built. The evidence for this take two forms. The first piece of evidence is actually a reason the should be built, or at least a reason that the residents idea that it shouldn't be is wrong.

And that is that the house wouldn't violate any town codes. So you can't accuse the family of building some ramshackle house. It's good house. But everything else is a reason that the house shouldn't be built. The land in question is in a painting by a famous and beloved landscape painter who recently died.

And the residents say that the house would alter the pristine landscape and damage the community's artistic, historic heritage. In other words, the land of the family owns they'd like to build their house on although the house wouldn't violate any code. The residents say that because it's in a famous picture how shouldn't be built? Whenever you have advantages in favor and against doing something, we typically call that a net benefit argument.

And all net benefit arguments have relatively similar assumptions. The assumption being that there's nothing that we haven't brought up, that would tip the balance towards the thing that we don't wanna do here which is building the the house. There's nothing that we haven't considered, that would give a good reason to allow the house to be built.

So if we're trying to strengthen the argument we wanna support that idea that is provide extra reason I think yeah, there's nothing else out there that could tip the balance. So, we look at the answer choices. Answer choice A, every possible effort should be made to preserve historic buildings that are well known and well loved.

This would work if it were building we're actually trying to stop a building from being built not protect the building that's already up. There isn't a house in the painting. So answer choice A is not our answer answer choice B, communities that seek to preserve undeveloped areas of landscape or historic neighborhoods should purchase those properties for the public trust.

This offers the residence away out, they could just buy the land. But the argument is about whether there's other things they could do. The argument is trying to show that they're right to oppose the house. So other things they could do, don't matter. Answer choice C, artists who choose to represent the actual landscapes, well, the artist in question is dead.

So he can't demand anything of the owners of the land represented and so on. He's gone. Answer choice D. The right to build on one's own property is constrained by the artistic and historical interests the community at large. How this would support the argument because it supports that assumption that there's nothing else out there that could tip the balance by getting rid of something that could tip the balance.

If the right to build on one's own property were unconstrained, then these residents wouldn't have a very good argument. This answer choice gets rid of that as a concern. And the argument is thereby stronger. So D helps the residents out. Answer choice E, what's wrong with it?

Well, two things. The first is, this is about what regulations ought to do not about what's going on currently with the resident. And second, nobody said that the house was going to obstruct access to historic sites. I don't know anything about obstructing the old site.

It's just that it'll ruin the landscape. It'll ruin the prettiness that was in that old painting. So answer choice E, not our answer. The answer was D.

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