In this unit, we have read and heard a variety of arguments from civil and human rights activists past and present, including Dolores Huerta, Greta Thunberg, and Emma González. They each fight for different things, in different ways, but share the idea of standing up against injustice and challenging the status quo. As Dolores Huerta says, “the power is in your person.” But, is it? Do we truly have power and a voice in this society and can we make a difference—or should we? And, if so, what is worth fighting for?
In a fiercely original, thesis-driven, and well-supported essay, make an argument that answers the following prompt.
In this society, do individuals have an obligation to challenge the status quo when they see or experience injustice? If so, what is worth fighting for?
• Take a clear position on the first question in your thesis and in the body paragraphs argue what is worth fighting for. If you argue against challenging the status quo, provide reasons and evidence as to why nothing is worth the risks involved.
• Quote from at least three different sources that either I have provided or you have found.
• Draw upon the arguments made by any of the activists we have read and heard
If you cite from the video clips I provided, name the activist and movement and cite them in-text as (YouTube.com). See their names and titles that follow.
Videos & Activists:
• Larissa Martinez, valedictorian at McKinney High School, gave the commencement speech and revealed her DACA status.
• Emma González gave the Fight for Our Lives speech at the march in Washington, D.C. after the mass shooting in Parkland, Florida that killed 17 people.
• Dolores Huerta is a civil rights icon and co-founder of the United Farm Workers union (along with Cesar Chavez) and currently runs the Dolores Huerta Foundation for social justice.
In this and all essays you should
• Open with something that hooks your readers and provide context on your topic/introduce your texts and authors
• Write a clear and forceful thesis statement that answers the prompt
• Use ample support to illustrate your points
• Make sure all quotes or paraphrases have signal phrases and are in “quote sandwiches” with proper MLA in-text citation (see handouts on Canvas if you need to refresh your memory on how to do this; this goes for any of these skills)
• Add appropriate transitions between ideas within paragraphs and to connect your points between paragraphs
• Provide enough context (brief summaries) in the introduction to give us an overview of whichever texts you choose
• Conclude with a summary of your analysis and make a final point or call to action
• Carefully proofread for spelling, grammar, and format errors
• Include a catchy title
The essay must be five or more pages and in MLA format (double-spaced), with a separate Works Cited page. The final draft will be turned in via turnitin.com before midnight of the due date. The rough draft should be printed and brought to class for peer review.
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