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Everything’s an Argument by Andrea A, Essay Example

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Essay

In “Common Themes and Questions About the Use of ‘Indian’ Logos,” Barbara Munson argues that Wisconsin schools exploit Native American culture through logos and team mascots. As Munson explains, “’Indian’ logos and nicknames create, support and maintain stereotypes of a race of people” (1). While many industries support such stereotypes, Munson along with other Native Americans believe that the public school system should not be a pathway for institutional racism. Although the Native American community views racism in schools as repulsive, Munson presents several ways that the educational system has targeted and abused Native culture. Instead of solely arguing her point, the author uses common statements made by non-Native Americans to prove her theory and create a conversational piece that the average person can comprehend.

At the beginning of her argument, Munson presents the concept of institutional racism as “cultural abuse [that] is supported by one or many of society’s institutions” (1). Since public schools are classified as societal institutions, cultural abuse within the educational system would qualify as corporate racism. Although Munson establishes a good argument, she needs substantial support to solidify her claim. While the average scholar would compose and argument that consists of statistical data and educated opinions, Munson uses public viewpoints to support her claim. The author’s argumentative style is beneficial to the reader because it allows him or her to review the facts and come to an informed decision. Whereas the average argument merely regurgitates what professionals believe to be accurate, Munson’s style gives untainted evidence to the audience. Although such evidence may prove offensive to some, others can appreciate the author’s responses to community beliefs.

While it does not appear that the author places comments in any particular order, the reader gets the implication that statements have an organizational mechanism to them. The first statement, for instance, says “We have always been proud of our ‘Indians’” (1). In many respects, such statements can serve as the opening sentence to an introductory paragraph. While not completely free or racism, the comment does not infuriate the reader to the point of him or her discrediting the entire argument. Whereas a mild statement at the beginning strengthens the claim, a comment like “this logo issue is just about political correctness” (3) would annihilate Munson’s argument. Such comment made at the beginning of the argument would cause the reader to question the importance of the claim and may spur some individuals to go against what the author is trying to convey. Although not numerical, Munson manages to place milder comments at the beginning and end of her claim in order to draw the reader into the concept and give them hope. In many respects, Munson’s organization is patterned after to traditional five paragraph essay where the claim’s substance is found in the body while general concepts are placed in the introduction and conclusion.

“Common Themes and Questions About the Use of ‘Indian’ Logos” is a powerful piece by Munson that calls everyone to question their biases. Although the author could have easily written a historical analysis of Native American culture in Wisconsin, Munson decides to let the community support her argument through common statements. Although not a popular way to formulate an argument, the author is successful because she orders each comment according to severity. While Munson places the least offensive comments at the beginning and ending of the claim, substantially racist statements are placed in the middle. Through her argument, Munson proves that Native Americans are exploited in the educational system. The author also proves that it is possible to create an effective argument with little statistical or professional data. In many respects, argumentation is more about organization than documentation.

Works Cited

Munson, Barabara E. “Common Themes and Questions About the Use of ‘Indian’ Logos.” 1-4 Wisconsin Indian Education Association “Indian” Mascot and Logo Taskforce. 1997.

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