(for the Module on Argument Essays)

The Basics:

Using a search engine such as Google, locate an online opinion/analysis or review article that you disagree with and consider problematic. Summarize it briefly in the introduction and the present your thesis (claim/assertion) at the end of the introduction. Critique the article in the first two body paragraphs and then present a counterargument (also called a rebuttal) in the third body paragraph. Finally, conclude the essay and create a Works Cited entry. The essay will be five paragraphs long. The Works Cited entry will be on its own page and will be the last page of the assignment.

The assignment is worth 100 points. The due date will be given to you in class.

Use MLA format.

Submit the essay through Turnitin under the Lessons tab on Blackboard’s Home Page for your class.

The acceptable level of “Similarity” for Turnitin’sSimilarity Report” for this assignment will be 22% because you will be embedding quotations from the article in the first two body paragraphs.

I have broken down the assignment into 9 tasks. I recommend doing the essay step by step and then checking off each task upon completion.

I provide sample thesis statements, in-text citations, and Works Cited entries in this handout to help you write your essay.

This handout ends with a sample article to help you recognize satire and an example of plagiarism to help you with composing and editing.

Additional handouts complement the instructions but are not linked here. I am sending them this week or next week. Look for them:

  • “Rhetorical Modes – Argument”
  • “Breaking down the Argument Essay by Weeks”
  • “Reading-Response Worksheet”
  • “Guidelines for Summarizing and Analyzing”
  • “GO Formatting Your Argument Essay”
  • A PowerPoint slideshow called “Counterarguments” can help you with transitional expressions for your rebuttal.

The Tasks:

Task 1: Find an opinion/analysis or review article you disagree with or find problematic. Do not use a library database. Use Google.

Task 2: Read, summarize, and annotate the article.

Task 3: Make an outline. Pre-write and organize.

Task 4: Write the introduction, including the thesis, which is your assertion/claim.

Task 5: Write the first two body paragraphs. Analyze the article.

Task 6: Make sure to quote the author of the article at least once in each of the first two body paragraphs (in-text citation).

Task 7: Write the third body paragraph. Create a counterargument/rebuttal.

Task 8: Conclude.

Task 9: Create a Works Cited page.

*Some students write the Works Cited page as Task 2 and then continue from there. They prefer to get the Works Cited done with from the start.

Task 1: Find an article.

Find an article based on an opinion/analysis or review of something current. Disagree with it or find problems with the article.

Use a common online search engine, such as Google. The article must be problematic, thought-provoking, opinionated.  Some web sites where you might find an appropriate article include but are not limited to NBC News, Fox News, Jezebel, The AV Club, or any other site that contains opinion, analysis, or review articles. Look for headings on the web site that say “opinion” or “opinion-analysis” if you cannot find an article right way. The article could be based on a current event or pop culture.

It must have been written in recently, 2015 or more recently.

The article will represent a view that is the opposite of your opinion on a particular subject. You will need to argue against the content of the article or the presentation of the content, so it should be a topic you feel strongly about.

Submit your essay to Turnitin, but do not submit the article you are critiquing to Turnitin.

The article must have an author. One or two people must have their names listed on the article as the writers. The writer’s name can usually be found under the title.

There must be a date printed on the article as proof of when it was written. The article must be recent, no earlier than 2015.

Do NOT use the following:

  • a “pro and con” article from a database. Use Google or a similar search engine. The article must take a side on an issue.
  • an article with a list, whether with numbers, bullet points, or other ways of delineating a list. You must use a genuine opinion-analysis article, not something like “Reasons the Governor Is Like a Potato,” “How to Find out What Kind of Aura You Vibrate,” or “Five Reasons Why You Deserve a Cancun Vacation.”
  • fake stories. Politifact has a list of fake news sites.
  • advertisements or propaganda pieces written as pretend articles. These types of pieces usually do not include authors or publication dates, so that is a giveaway that what you are reading is not a true opinion-analysis article.
  • satire (such as from The Onion)
  • titles that are questions

Here are some sample topics that students have successfully written about in the past. You may choose the same topic, a similar one, or a different one. Some people search for an article based on a topic, but others go to a website and read articles before deciding on a topic. These are examples from the past, so understand that not every topic listed would work this year. For example, there are very few current articles about school dress codes that are, in actuality, advertisements from clothing companies:

  • A specific immigration OR foreign policy
  • The use of drones (military or otherwise)
  • GMOs and whether they are safe
  • Teachers with guns
  • Gun restrictions
  • Paying college athletes
  • The value of zoos
  • Diet choices, such as eating meat or being a vegan
  • A specific climate change policy
  • School uniforms/dress codes
  • Marijuana legalization
  • Legalization of sex workers
  • The value of a college degree
  • The minimum wage
  • Gentrification of a particular city
  • Free condoms for high school students
  • Pit bulls as a dangerous breed
  • Breastfeeding in public
  • Charter schools vs. public schools
  • Free college tuition for all Americans
  • Universal health care
  • Cloning
  • Videogames and their connection to violence
  • Halloween being just for children
  • Discipline for children
  • Police in schools
  • Consuming dairy – An opinion on drinking cow’s milk
  • Sexism in a particular show, movie, or video
  • Whether a particular celebrity is a bad role model
  • Vaccination choices
  • Social distancing or mask requirements

Task 2: Read, summarize, and annotate the article.

When reviewing an article, preview it first.

  • The title usually provides the main idea.
  • Read headings.
  • Look at pictures.
  • Skim.

Think critically about the article. Make reasonable inferences based on the content of the article. Consider facts vs. opinions and fallacies. Look up words you do not know. Consider connotation vs. denotation, dog whistling, gaslighting, tone, etc. Find flaws with the logic or reasoning in the article.

Annotate the article to organize your thoughts and decide the focus of your argument. Think critically about what you are reading. Many students choose to print out the article to make this step easier.

To annotate well, react to the text:

  • Find key points.
  • Look for confusing points, areas you need to review or research.
  • Make note of vocabulary.
  • Look for inconsistencies.
  • Find places where the author reveals him/herself, reveals intentions.
  • Pay attention to the author’s tone.
  • Find sentences that you want to use in your essay.
  • Consider counterarguments/refutations/rebuttals (opposing your viewpoints so you can concede and then refute those point – find something complimentary but do not change your position – More on this later.

Refer to the handout called “Guidelines for Summarizing and Analyzing Details” to help you focus on the parts of the essay. Use “Breaking down the Argument” to help you do the work incrementally so that you pace yourself.

Consider WHAT the author believes or understands, WHAT points the author brings up, WHAT arguments the author presents, HOW the author presents ideas. Understand WHAT your position is. Discover WHAT is wrong with the author’s position or presentation of material. WHAT issues will you critique? HOW should the claim be organized?

Task 3: Make an outline.

The handout called “Reading-Response Worksheet” can help you outline the essay. It separates the parts into the summary, the analysis, the in-text citations, the counterargument, and the conclusion.

Your introduction presents a summary of the article with a thesis. It is neutral in tone until the thesis. The analysis takes place in the first two body paragraphs. Each gives a different concern/disagreement with the article and includes embedded in-text citations (at least one quotation from the article you are critiquing per body paragraph). The third body paragraph is the counterargument/rebuttal. Finally, the essay has a conclusion and a Works Cited entry.

A Focus on the Body Paragraphs:

Total number of body paragraphs: 3

Body 1 – Argue point 1: Assertion/Claim plus Evidence/Proof and 

     Commentary/Relevance  (7-10 Sentence)

Body 2 – Argue point 2: Assertion/Claim plus Evidence/Proof and

                Commentary/Relevance (7-10 Sentences)

Body 3 – Counterargument -also called a Rebuttal or Counterclaim (7-10    


Task 4: Write the introduction, which begins with a summary of the article and ends with a thesis, which makes an assertion (claim) about the article.

The introduction is your first paragraph. The first time you mention the writer of your article, use the person’s first and last name. After that, use the person’s last name.

  • Begin by summarizing the article. Mention the title of the article (using capital letters and quotation marks),the author’s first and last name, and the article’s main idea in the first sentence of the introduction. Look at the title of the article to discover the main idea of the article. Use third-person, present tense. Use expressions such as the following:  the author states, claims, suggests, asserts, contends, etc.
  • Give just the author’s ideas until the thesis. Paraphrase as you summarize the article. Save direct quotations for body paragraphs.
  • Be concise, objective, neutral. Give no opinions until the thesis.
  • Your thesis will end the paragraph. Your thesis will be your opinion. It is your assertion/claim. Disagree with the WHAT that the author of the article presents or HOW the author presents the idea. Have two reasons WHY you take your position.

The thesis:

Your thesis will be an opinion statement. It is the last sentence in the introduction.

You do not need to use a “plan of development” approach as you did in Paper Three’s expository essay.

In these four examples of thesis statements, below, notice the variety of approaches you might take to writing an argumentative thesis.

The first example does not mention the counterclaim/counterargument in the thesis. The other three do.

The third example gives a plan of development by mentioning two assertions.

The first two do not mention the articles’ authors by their last names. The last two do mention the authors by their last names.

You will recall that the beginning of the introduction mentions the author’s first and last name along with the title of the article in quotation marks and the main idea of the article. After mentioning an author’s full name, the student uses the last name for the rest of the essay.

Sample thesis statements from past students:

Living a healthy lifestyle should not revolve around fasting because evidence that fasting diets are heathy shows otherwise.

Alcohol consumption can be dangerous at any age, but the author overlooks why lowering the drinking age to eighteen would be beneficial.

Twenge provides data to defend her position; however, the evidence is unreliable because correlative data can be easily manipulated and there is no evidence that using smartphones leads to depression. (notice the 2-point plan)

Navarette provides facts to defend her position; however, official statistics of true causes of homelessness do not support her argument.

Personal Opinions:

Persuasive essays need personal opinions. You want your reader to see your side and hopefully agree with you. Be logical and reasonable.

Sample Articles and Thesis Statements from Students:

Notice in the first sample below, the student uses the author’s last name. That is because earlier in the introduction, the student already mentioned the first and last name.

Article 1: “Valerie Navarette Is on a Mission to End Homelessness, One Person at a Time” by Meg O’Connor

Thesis 1: Navarette provides facts to defend her position; however, official statistics of true causes of homelessness do not support her argument.

Article 2: “Elephants in Africa Need to Be Protected, and Believe It or Not, Hunting Does This Better Than a Ban” by Chris Cox

Thesis 2: In addition to the fact that money acquired from hunting is not used toward the protection of the species, reversing a ban on hunting endangers the African elephant, leaving no chance of survival.

Sample Introductory Paragraph:

I am sharing a past student’s entire introduction here. She gave me permission to do so. Notice how the first sentence mentions the article’s name in capital letters and quotation marks and the author of the article. The student then provides a summary of the article by paraphrasing. She ends with a thesis, which states her claim against the article. She brings up two points that she discusses in her first two body paragraphs: the author is uninformed and tipping affects the dining experience.

Understand that you cannot use her words or ideas, or the words and ideas from any of the student examples in this document, for your own essay:

Sample Introduction: In his online article for the Washington Square News titled “Here’s a Tip, Don’t Tip Your Waiters,” Diego Maguina Razuri asserts that tipping culture should be abolished and describes issues he feels can be solved by not tipping. The author argues that providing servers a tip for their service enables employers to pay wait staff below minimum wage. He also claims that top incentives do not equate to better service, wait staff are tipped less if they are a person of color, and that restaurant staff intentionally discriminate against patrons. Although it appears that Razuri is concerned about fair treatment of hospitality workers, it is clear how uninformed he is about what goes on behind the scenes and how much tipping really affects the dining experience.

Task 5: Write the first two body paragraphs.

The body paragraphs offer a persuasive critique. You need the following:

  • at least one quotation in each of the first two body paragraphs
  • 3rd person
  •  present tense

An argument essay is not about having a screaming match. It involves logically and persuasively presenting a claim. The best argument clearly presents a position and offers support to back up a claim.

Make a judgment about the author’s thesis/main idea/claim. Criticize the WHAT and HOW parts of the essay. What is wrong with the content? What is wrong with the delivery of the content?

Consider WHO you think the author’s audience is. WHAT is the author’s purpose?

Evaluate the credibility of the author and sources. Make note of the author’s tone. Is the person being formal or informal?  Is the author appeal to the readers’ emotions?

Critique the supporting details/examples. Is there evidence to support the author’s main idea? What questions are addressed? Is the author reasonable, logical, and reliable? Can you trust the author? Does the author resort to name calling? Does the author show bias? Do you see any fallacies, dog whistles, gaslighting techniques, etc.?

Be logical and believable. Give reasons why your opinion is correct. Give evidence. You might use facts, statistics, expert opinions, and examples.

Be confident and assertive.

*** Refrain from saying “in my opinion,” “I feel,” “to be honest,” “personally,” etc.  You give your opinion, the expression “in my opinion” is wordy and unnecessary because the audience knows your thesis is an opinion. Besides, you need to use the 3rd person for your argument.

Body Paragraphs One and Two will follow a pattern. Acronyms have been provided on a handout called “Acronyms to Help Your Writing,” but I will summarize them here since they should help you organize your essay.

Here are three acronyms that I use in class to help you write the first two body paragraphs. They all do the same thing, but some students have an affinity for one acronym over another:

CPR –A claim is a main idea statement that presents an assertion. The proof is the evidence used to support the main idea. Some call the main idea the major support and the proof minor support. The proof contains examples and evidence to back up a person’s main idea. The relevance is the significance of the data, quotation, statistic, or fact to the idea that writer presents. It helps make connections for the reader between the proof and the claim.

ICE –The acronym ICE covers the same content as CPR. Both are devices to help you remember the pattern to use. When a writer introduces a point, the author is making a point or claim. When a writer cites a source, the person is introducing supporting evidence to back up the writer’s argument or main idea. When the writer explains a point, the author is showing the relevance or significance of the citation, statistic, or data by explaining it to make the information clear to the reader and connect the supporting point to the main idea.

AECEC – While this is not a true acronym because it does not spell out a word, many teachers today use this abbreviation to represent words that help students format their argument essays. To create an assertion is to make a point in a persuasive writing assignment. It is a claim. The evidence is the quotation, fact, or statistic used. It is the evidence that is being cited. Sometimes a writer presents this evidence in an indirect quotation, and sometimes the writer directly quotes a person of authority or with credentials. The commentary is the explanation and/or relevance mentioned in the above acronyms. The extra evidence is additional support. Some call this the second evidence or supporting point. Then as a writer introduces another example to prove a point, the writer must then comment on the next example or evidence. Some teachers use AECEC to emphasize that a paragraph might need two examples or two kinds of evidence. Some teachers prefer AECECEC and make students present three examples per body paragraph. Students should always look at the directions and rubric for an assignment to determine how much external supporting evidence to include. Paragraph length and essay length could determine how many examples to give for each topic sentence.

As I have said from the beginning, jargon is not as important as understanding the writing process itself and being able to follow directions so that a student does work correctly.

When citing another person, credit must be given. Whether that example or quotation is called “evidence” or “proof,” credit must be given to the person or institution where the information came from. The student refers to a source by the first and last name the first time; later, if the writer uses the same source, then the writer uses the person’s last name. Whether a student uses CPR, ICE, or AECEC to help with essay writing, the student must remember to give enough support to back up a main point, assertion, or claim being introduced in the main idea sentence.


A fallacy is faulty reasoning or faulty logic. Recognizing errors in reasoning can help you understand why an argument is weak. If you see fallacies in an article you are reading, you should point them out to make your persuasive assertion or claim strong. If you find a fallacy in a direct quotation from the article, feel free to use it as part of your direct proof for your topic sentence’s claim in a body paragraph. Use the author’s words, in quotation marks. Then follow up with a statement such as “The problem with this statement is ______________.”

Using a direct quotation from the article is part of Task 6, but Tasks 5 and 6 are often done together. Task 5 presents the groundwork for the first two body paragraphs. Task 6 focuses on the proof/evidence from the text and how to include it.

*The web site called “The Upturned Microscope Presents” has many memes as examples of fallacies that you can read through in case you have trouble understanding fallacies. You can access these memes through Google Images.

When it comes to Paper 4, you do not need to point out fallacies that a writer is using if you find other flaws in the article. Furthermore, if you can explain the flaw but are not sure of the name for the fallacy, that is fine. The point is that you want to use critical thinking skills to determine whether someone’s argument sounds logical and reasonable.

The handout labeled “Fallacies” could help you find faulty reasoning.

Task 6: Make sure to quote the author at least once in each of the first two body paragraphs (in-text citations). This task is really part of Task 5, as mentioned above, but it deserves extra attention.

Pull direct quotations from your article to use as a reference point for your first two body paragraphs. You need just one quotation for each of the first two body paragraphs. Once more, I encourage you to print out and use the “Reading-Response Worksheet” to help you organize your thoughts. If you search for appropriate quotations as you annotate and organize your essay and write down those quotations with a corresponding response, then your hard work is already done. At that point, you just need to decide where and how to embed those quotations. The response you write down in the “Reading-Response Worksheet” can help you decide how to phrase your commentary and show the relevance of the quotation to your main idea.

I do not collect the “Reading-Response Worksheet.” It is a pre-writing tool.

When analyzing a quotation, you can quote exactly what the author says, and then say, “What this means is” and then “The problem with this statement is. . .” At that point you should continue your analysis of the quotation. Explain yourself clearly.

Creating In-Text Citations

When mentioning a source, name the author. Here are examples from A Writer’s Reference. In the first example, below, the page is included because the source is from a journal with multiple pages. If you are quoting from an on-line article, there is usually no page number and therefore no page number would be included in parentheses.

IN-TEXT (In the paper): Bioethicist David Resnik emphasizes that such policies, despite their potential to make our society healthier, “open the door to excessive government control over food, which could restrict dietary choices, interfere with cultural, ethnic, and religious traditions, and exacerbate socioeconomic inequities” (31).


Resnik, David. “Trans Fat Bans and the Human Freedom.” American Journal of

             Bioethics, vol. 10, no. 3, Mar. 2010, pp. 27-32.

Next is an example of not giving the author’s name in the essay but then putting the author’s last name in parentheses (along with a page number if there is one) at the end. The example below is not a direct quote; it provides a statistic from a source with two authors. These authors’ names would be found in a Works Cited entry, so I would be able to know more information about them and where their information comes from.

IN-TEXT: According to a nationwide poll, 75% of Americans are opposed to laws that restrict or put limitations on access to unhealthy food (Neergaard and Agiesta).

Grammar help – If the author has an error, use [sic].

For example: He said, “They brought there [sic] children to the party.”

In the example above, the wrong word was used by the author, so the student writes [sic] so that the teacher doesn’t think that the student made the mistake of saying there instead of their.

Task 7: Write the third body paragraph, also called the counterargument/rebuttal

A counterargument is also called a counterclaim or rebuttal. It is a point of view that goes against your own claims. By acknowledging another point of view, you strengthen your own position because you prove that you recognize that not everyone thinks the same way about an issue. It shows you have considered another perspective and want to be fair. Nevertheless, you are firm about your position after considering alternative opinions.

The third body paragraph is the same length as the other body paragraphs, 7-10 sentences. Examine and then express reasons for the author’s opinions. By taking several sentences to explain the author’s perspective, you show that you have considered that point of view. Then you could use a word such as “however” to turn things around and reaffirm your position. Doing this shows that you are committed to your position despite considering someone else’s perspective. This shows that you are being objective.

A main reason to include a counterargument is so that other people see that you are addressing their concerns or interests, but you are proving them to be mistaken.

A PowerPoint called “Counterarguments” provides some transitional expressions that can be used in this paragraph. I will provide few examples here to give you inspiration:

Sample Ways to Begin a Counterargument/Rebuttal:
“Nobody denies that _______________.” On the other hand, ____________.”

“This evidence could be true for some. For example, the author has a valid point about_________________. However, ______________________”

“The author’s perspective might be due to her upbringing. Others with a different perspective might note ____________________________.”

A note:

Both sarcasm and satire use humor and cleverness to point out flaws in thinking, but sarcasm is often seen as rude. You must be careful to understand your audience when using sarcasm. Satire can mock another perspective in a gentler way, but not everyone is aware that humor is being used to make fun of something. If your audience does not recognize your satire, then you will not accomplish your mission. The best bet is to be objective, neutral, and fair. Tone is easier to hear in speech than read in writing for many people.

Task 8: Conclude.

This is the last paragraph. Wrap up your ideas. Reaffirm your position. Should the reader do something? Do you have a call-to-action? Should the reader make changes in their life? Do you have prediction for the future? Avoid a summary that regurgitates your main points without offering a commentary or insight.

Task 9: Create a Works Cited entry.

Purdue OWL has information on MLA format. The Works Cited page will be on its own page and will be the last page of Paper 4.

The Works Cited page has a title called Works Cited.

When you write the entry, follow this format:

Double space. Use 12-point font when typing. Left justify. Use a hanging indent format.

The most common mistakes students make when creating an entry for the Works Cited is in not double spacing and not using a hanging indent. The “hanging indent” is created when the first line of the Works Cited entry begins at the one-inch left-hand margin, but all the subsequent lines get indented.

To create this hanging indent when using Word, find the “Home” tab on your monitor/screen in the upper left. Go to the section marked “Paragraph” and find the up and down arrows. As you hover over it, the words “Line and Paragraph Spacing” appear. Left click on the icon. Then find “Line Spacing Options” and click on that. A box pops up. Now search under the tab “Indents and Spacing.” See in the section marked “Indentation” the word “Special.” There is a box under it with a drop-down arrow. Find where it says, “Hanging Indent.” If you highlight and click “enter” for your Works Cited entry, the proper indentation should occur.

Order of items in the Works Cited:

  • Use a hanging indent format.
  • Last name of the author of the article goes first followed by a comma and the first name.
  • Have a period after the name.
  • Use capital letters and quotation marks for the title of the article, which is next.
  • A period goes after the title of the article.
  • The source where the article was found, such as the website, gets capitalized and italicized.
  • A comma goes after the source.
  • Write the date the article was published in this order: day month year.
  • A comma goes after published date.
  •  The URL is last.

Sample Works Cited:

Remember to use the same margins and font as the rest of the paper. Double space and use a “hanging indent”. The Works Cited needs to be on its own page. Pretend the following example begins at the top of the last page of Paper 4.


Student’s last name and page no.

Works Cited

Tanenhaus, Sam. “Generation Nice: The Millennials Are Generation Nice.” The New York Times, 15 Aug. 2014, www.nytimes.com/2014/08/17/fashion/the-millenials-are-generation-nice.

Samples from A Writer’s Reference:

Sample Entry from a Web Newspaper Article: Notice the order – Author (last name, first). “Article Title.” Website title, date, URL

Crowell, Maddy. “How Computers Are Getting Better at Detecting Liars.” The Christian Science Monitor, 12 Dec. 2015, www.csmonitor.com/Science/Science-Notebook/2015/1212/How-computers-are-getting-better-at-detecting-liars.

Sample Entry from a Web Article with Author Listed: Notice the order – Author (last name, first). “Article Title.” Title of Website, date (day, month abbreviated and year), URL

Leonard, Andrew. “The Surveillance State High School.” Salon, 27 Nov. 2012, www.salon.com/2012/11/27/the surveillance state high school/.

Sample Satirical Article: Learn to recognize and avoid satire.

Here is a satirical article from a news source (The Guardian). Do not use a satirical article because the author of the article is not serious. Notice the points I highlighted in green at the beginning and end of the article.

Some headings for online articles are not capitalized based on MLA format rules. That is because the authors of those articles are using a different format, such as APA style. You still need to use MLA format when creating your Works Cited page and entry.

Climate change is an obvious myth – how much more evidence do you need?

The Guardian

Climate change is an obvious myth – how much more evidence do you need?

Many people just refuse to accept the facts that surround them, even if we saw 100 more years of it plain and apparent

Dean Burnett


Tue 25 Nov 2014 04.17 ESTFirst published on Tue 25 Nov 2014 02.13 EST

 There’s no such thing as climate change, Northampton has always looked like this.

Photograph: Alamy

Climate change is a myth. We all know this, deep down. Some of you reading this may have been taken in by the fear-mongering governments or corrupt scientists so have been brainwashed into thinking climate change is a real thing that “threatens all of humanity” or some other nonsense, but it’s just that: nonsense. When you look closely at it, the so-called evidence for climate change, or “global warming” or “warmageddon” or “planetary death spiral” or whatever they’re calling it these days, it doesn’t stand up to scrutiny.

Take changes in sea level. They keep banging on about how the warming of the atmosphere causes rising sea levels, but if that was happening we’d have seen it by now! It’s been countless decades since they first started predicting this, but here we still are! But they persist in trying to convince us it’s a real threat, citing places that were supposedly “lost to the waves” and we’re supposed to believe that places like Atlantis, Miami or Skegness actually existed? You believe that rubbish and you probably believe we landed on Ganymede! And you’re an idiot, so there’s no hope for you.

And where does this rise in sea level supposedly come from – melting glacial ice? Like there was at any point massive blocks of ice just floating around in the ocean? You ever leave an ice cube in your drink last longer than five minutes? It melts, and yet we’re meant to believe these “ice caps” lasted millions of years. They’re not even trying to be convincing any more.

 A “sheet”, of “ice”? What’s next; “garlic bread”? Photograph: HANDOUT/AFP/Getty Images

And don’t get me started on this supposed food crisis. Charging £150 for a single loaf of bread? Are we supposed to believe this is due to widespread agricultural collapse brought about by climate change? Or, as is far more likely, is it a price-fixing conspiracy by the global bakery mega-corporation? When 78% of all food in this country is sold by Greggs, OF COURSE you’re going to see this sort of thing happening. It’s been nearly a century since he took office and I, like many, think Chancellor Farage was a great man, but he dropped the ball on that one.

 It’s the same with these hypothetical mass extinctions, as if that’s anything to do with climate change. It’s just opportunistic cherry picking by these cynical and manipulative scientists. Harsh fact is, a lot of species go extinct, but that’s just nature. Dinosaurs went extinct millions of years before we humans ever appeared, are we supposed to take the blame for that too? Doesn’t mean I’m happy that we lost the elephants, tigers, pandas, salamanders, cows and poodles, but I don’t feel guilty about it either.

People tell me cows were once bred domestically. Can you imagine? This was supposedly stopped because they caused significant environmental damage due to methane and deforestation, but we all know it was orchestrated by the synthetic meat companies. They obviously got rid of all cattle to ensure their current global dominance. Just think; if they hadn’t killed all the cows, we’d still be slaughtering them today!

 Cows: on a par with dragons and unicorns. Photograph: JEAN-PIERRE MULLER/AFP/Getty Images

Then there’s this “extreme weather” nonsense. I’ve not noticed any changes in the weather outside of the norm. Clueless clime change believers keep telling me it’s a global change so that doesn’t mean anything, but I LIVE ON THE GLOBE, so I’d notice any changes wouldn’t I? Duh! But there haven’t been any changes, obviously. There are no more storms now than there was when I was a kid. I barely get struck by lightning more than once a month, maybe every three weeks at most, and it’s never done me any harm and I’ll kill anyone who says otherwise!

But it’s with these weather worries that these manipulative scientists really give the game away. Urging us to use more wind power but complaining about all the hurricanes we keep having? They got us all to convert to solar power decades ago but keep whining about prolonged sunny spells? MAKE YOUR MINDS UP!

Some of them even go so far as to say it’s climate change that’s causing forced migration of millions of people. But that’s clearly because everyone has solar cars and jetpacks and matter transporters now, so why would they stay in one place, with or without devastating environmental damage spurring them on.

It’s all a bit convenient, isn’t it, all this palaver over climate change? Weird how 99.9999% of all scientists purportedly agree that it’s definitely happening and our most powerful quantum computers are certain to over a million decimal places that it’s our fault? Weird how they’re saying this now, at exactly the same time when they need all the volunteers they can get for the moon and Mars colonies. What’s more likely; that human industrial activity actually does lead to climate change, or that it’s all a massive meticulous centuries-long ruse to convince people that leaving Earth is a good idea? Obviously, it’s the latter. These scientists have no shame or respect.

I can’t say I’m not tempted to go myself, though. I’d rather live on another planet, than on one where every aspect of your life is subject to rigorous scientific control. Nobody should have to put up with that crap.

Dean Burnett doesn’t actually agree with any of the claims in this piece, but don’t let that stop you commenting or shouting at him on Twitter @garwboy

About Plagiarism:

Diana Hacker and Nancy Sommers,

 “Writing about Literature,” from A Writer’s Reference

Example of Plagiarism: What you see below is an original source that a student uses. Following the original source is a mistake a student might make. The parts highlighted in green are exact words from the original source and therefore considered cheating. Some students think it is fine to write lines from an author but to change some words every so often. No, unintentional borrowing is still plagiarism. The page number is used because the author, Elaine Hedges is mentioned.

Clearly, the source, “Small Things Reconsidered: ‘A Jury of Her Peers,’ “ would be an entry on the Works Cited page.


Mothers [in the late nineteenth century] were advised to teach their daughters to make small, exact stitches, not only for durability but as a way of instilling habits of patience, neatness, and diligence. But such stitches also became a badge of one’s needlework skill, a source of self-esteem and of status, through the recognition and admiration of other women.

-Elaine Hedges, “Small Things Reconsidered:

A Jury of Her Peers,’” p. 62


One of the final clues in the story, the irregular stitching in Minnie’s quilt patches, connects immediately with Mrs. Hale and Mrs. Peters. In the late nineteenth century, explains Elaine Hedges, small, exact stitches were valued not only for their durability. They became a badge of one’s prowess with the needle, a source of self-respect and of prestige, through the recognition and approval of other women (62).

Example of Correctly Paraphrasing a Source: What you see is a student paraphrasing correctly by not using the exact same words as the original source. Instead, the student uses their own words and credits the original author. The page number is used because the author, Elaine Hedges, is mentioned.

Clearly, the source, “Small Things Reconsidered: ‘A Jury of Her Peers,’ “ would be an entry on the Works Cited page.


Mothers [in the late nineteenth century] were advised to teach their daughters to make small, exact stitches, not only for durability but as a way of instilling habits of patience, neatness, and diligence. But such stitches also became a badge of one’s needlework skill, a source of self-esteem and of status, through the recognition and admiration of other women.

-Elaine Hedges, “Small Things Reconsidered:

‘A Jury of Her Peers,’ ” p. 62


One of the final clues in the story, the irregular stitching in Minnie’s quilt patches, connects immediately with Mrs. Hale and Mrs. Peters. In the late nineteenth century, explains Elaine Hedges, precise needlework was valued more for its strength. It was a source of pride to women, a way of gaining status in the community of other women (62).

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