9.5 Enrichment

Discussion Questions

  1. What are the  ethical implications of using evidence from biased sources? Is this form of support manipulation?
  2. During a 2014 TED Talk, Zak Ebrahim begins his talk with a powerful narrative, the revelation that his father helped plan the 1993 World Trade Center bombing. His audience is gripped from the beginning, as he begins to recount the events of his childhood and the path he took after his father’s conviction. Is it an effective strategy to begin your narrative in the peak of the action, before starting at the beginning to explain how you got there?
  3. Discuss a time that a narrative made an impact on you during a presentation.


  1. Search, choose and analyze a speech from the top one hundred speeches given during the twentieth century. Write about how this speaker goes through the three-step process for using support.
  2. You have been asked to give a speech on child labor laws within the United States. Provide a list of possible examples you could use in your speech. You should have one from each of the four categories: positive, negative, non, and best.
  3. Find and analyze a newspaper opposition editorial piece or letter to the editor that takes a position on an issue. Next find an article on the same issue from a general news source. Which types of support does each writer use? How effective and convincing do you think the use of support is for each article? Why?


    Case Study

    While preparing a speech on the Department of Homeland Security (DHS), Aban runs across a website that has a lot of useful information. The website has numerous articles and links that all discuss the importance of the different functions of the DHS. Being a good speaker, Aban delves into the website to determine the credibility of the information being provided.

    Aban quickly realizes that the group sponsoring the website is a fringe-militia group that believes no immigrants should be allowed into the United States. While the information Aban is interested in has nothing to do with immigration, he wonders if all the information provided on the website has been distorted to support the organization’s basic cause.

    With a group of classmates, discuss the following:

    • Should Aban use the useful information about DHS even though the other information on the website is from an extremist group?
    • Are all sources on the extremist group’s website automatically suspect because of the group’s stated anti-immigration stance?
    • Is it ethical for Aban to use any of the information from this website?
    • If Aban was a friend of yours and he showed you the website, how would you tell him to proceed?



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