Essay topics: "Over the past two years, the number of shoppers in Central Plaza has been steadily decreasing while the popularity of skateboarding has increased dramatically. Many Central Plaza store owners believe that the decrease in their business is due to the number of skateboard users in the plaza. There has also been a dramatic increase in the amount of litter and vandalism throughout the plaza. Thus, we recommend that the city prohibit skateboarding in Central Plaza. If skateboarding is prohibited here, we predict that business in Central Plaza will return to its previously high levels."
Write a response in which you discuss what questions would need to be answered in order to decide whether the recommendation is likely to have the predicted result. Be sure to explain how the answers to these questions would help to evaluate the recommendation.
In the period of two years, the number of shoppers in Central Plaza have been diminishing. According to the arguer, this is the result of the increase number of skateboard users. The arguer has also stated that there has also been a dramatic increase in the amount of litter and vandalism. The arguer predicts that if the city prohibits skateboarding in Central Plaza, business would return. This recommendation seems like plausible, but fallacious at the same time.
First and foremost, what supportive reasons do the arguer have to conclude that the increase in number of skateboarders have caused the decrease in business? He/she only stated that the numbers of shoppers have decreased in the past 2 years. Two years isn’t a long enough time to predict that it is the cause of decline in business. Also, we have to take into consideration the economic status of the country. In an economic crisis such as the one that we experienced in 2008; consumers cutback on spending. It could be that coincidentally, skateboarders have started to come to Central Plaza to skateboard. With the extra available spaces from the diminished number of shoppers, skateboarders began to gather there more often.
Secondly, the issue of increase of littering; what evidence does the arguer have to show that they are done by skateboarders? There is no concrete proof aside of the assumption that is conveniently made because of a small trend of decline in business in the past two years. It seems that the arguer is using the skateboarders as a scapegoat for a bigger problem that the city is facing. As stated before, there could be an economic downturn that could’ve stifle consumers spending habits. Also, with economic downturns, there are a lot of government and business cutbacks. Janitorial duties could have been cut down so Central Plaza could save money. Instead of cleaning up the plaza every day, it now could be every other day. And the garbage gets piled up.
Thirdly, the rise of vandalism has also played part in the declined of business, the arguer stated. It is true that the aesthetic of an area can make a place of business a success or a fail; however, has the arguer considered that gangs may have defaced the plaza instead of skateboarders? Parts of gang activities are known to vandalize public places with graffiti. In the past two years, has there been new residents moving into the neighborhood around Central Plaza? There could be new families with delinquents lurking in the area looking to cause trouble.
Without much evidence, the arguer cannot falsely condemn skateboarders for the decline in business. There are many external factors to the misfortunate of businesses. Instead of recommending to prohibit skateboarding in the plaza, how about asking the city to build a designated area in the plaza for skateboarders? This way they have their own place to skate and does bother shoppers by swooping through them on skateboards.