THERE’S TWO PART’S:
Reflective Writing: Texas Legislative Branch, Redistricting, Campaigns and Elections under Federalism
Requirements and Completion Instructions
When completing your essay, you must provide in-text citations for any work that is directly quoted or paraphrased. When writing your essay, respond to the prompt thoroughly, and completely.
Your response should be your own thoughts and analysis. Citations may be formatted in APA, MLA or Chicago style, as long as they are consistent throughout. Research and resources should be incorporated with scholarly application. I.e. used as examples or evidence to support your analysis. Make sure to use complete sentences, and proper grammar. Your response to the prompt should focus on analyzing the information you gather and use to complete the constitutional chart through application. Incorporate the information you gathered by using it to provide examples and support for your response to the prompt.
Your analysis and essay must be at least 2 pages, in length. This does not include the bibliography. The bibliography should be incorporated, on a separate page, unless you are using Footnotes. You will upload your essay, and bibliography together, as a single file, to the designated link, in Eagle Online. File submissions accepted include .pdf, .doc, .dpcx files. Any other files, submitted, such as pages etc. will not be reviewed, and will automatically receive a grade of a zero, without re-submission.
My expectations of a complete assignment are that information is organized clearly and in detail with specific examples. Quality is preferred to quantity.
Copy and paste the link below, to access and stream the movie The Big Buy: How Tom Delay Stole Congress, free online. http://www.dailymotion.com/video/x6rzv (Links to an external site.)
ADDITIONAL LINK IF NEEDED – https://vimeo.com/235850615 (Links to an external site.)
Choose from one of the prompts below, to respond to
1. Thinking about federalism and the how power is distributed between multiple levels of government, including the federal and state level, identify current federal and Texas laws that regulate elections, such as those that provide for determining electoral processes, eligibility to participate in an election, selection methods, winning requirements, candidate qualifications, determining when and where election is held. Discuss inconsistencies and provide some possible examples to explain the potential effects these could have on electoral outcomes, of who is deemed winner, and ultimately achieving democratic representation of the appropriate people (constituents) who will be electorally linked and impacted by the winner of a political office.
2. In your own opinion, is re-redistricting, before the decennial census, a crime, based on statutory and constitutional law? Or, given the nature and number of state level elections, across a wide geography made up of an extremely demographically heterogenous population, make it democratically necessary that re-mapping between census’s be a reserved power of the states, in order to maximize representative democracy. How could the remapping of Texas be applied to example and explain the state’s Don’t Mess With Texas, age old attitude, and individualistic political culture.
3.How could you defend an argument that re-redistricting was not illegal, and how could you defend the argument that re-redistricting violated the Voting Rights Act. Despite, the Texas remapping controversy, should the federal judicial system be involved, in what Justice Felix Frankfurter called the “political thicket” of partisan redistricting? Especially, since the power to redistrict is a power reserved to for the state, and its people. If political gerrymandering is a problem, should its resolve be left to the voters, state by state, and jurisdiction by jurisdiction, or to the federal government (i.e. oversight, regulation, intervention, law…what do you think).
Objective: Use examples from the movie to explain the politics of Texas’ justice system in application of criminal proceedings and the nature of corrections policy to illustrate meaning of the death penalty/eye for an eye mentality; and create an argument supporting rehabilitation, death penalty or long term incarceration as the best correctional policy approach to dealing with criminals in Texas.
When writing your essay, respond to the prompt completely and thoroughly. Essays must be a minimum of 1.5 – 2 pages in length, double spaced, 1 inch margins, 12 point font, and written in Times New Roman.
Your response should be your own thoughts and analysis. Citations may be formatted in APA, MLA or Chicago style, remaining consistent throughout. Research and resources should be incorporated with scholarly application. I.e. used as examples or evidence to support your analysis. While outside research is not required it could help support your argument. Remember you do not have to cite anything that is common knowledge.
Make sure to use complete sentences, and proper grammar. Your response to the prompt should focus on analyzing the information you have gathered and used to provide examples that support your analysis.
“A” papers should include a critical analysis of the video’s by applying at least 2 examples to support your position.
A bibliography, references or works cited page, must accompany submission. This page does not count towards the minimum length, of the paper. Students must provide proper in-text (parenthetical) citations. Failure to cite paraphrased work or direct quotes, from the original work, thoughts and/or ideas of someone, other than your own, will result in an automatic 0, with no make-up work being accepted.
PART 1: Video Access and Viewing
The video you are required to watch will cover the notorious Texas execution case of Todd Willingham. In 2004, Cameron Todd Willingham was executed for the arson (fire) deaths of his three children. The initial investigation found 20 indicators of arson, pointing to his guilt. When science is included and they reexamine the evidence used to convict Willingham, no sign of arson was found. Did Texas potentially execute a man who was innocent?
The video is publicly accessible through PBS Frontline’s official website. You can access the video by following the instructions provided below
Click the link below, or copy and paste the link , into a new tab, in your internet browser.
http://www.pbs.org/wgbh/pages/frontline/death-by-fire/ (Links to an external site.)Links to an external site. (Links to an external site.)
PART 2: Video Reflection, Analysis and Submission Instructions
Write a reflective analysis of crime, justice and punishment under application of the Death Penalty, in Texas, based on application of what you learned from the Todd Willingham Case Video.
Write an essay that addresses each of prompt’s 2 components, Issue Position and Explanation and Application, outlined below
First, identify whether you are for, or against use of the death penalty as a form of criminal punishment (there is NO right or wrong answer). Successful completion of this assignment, and it’s learning objective, require your compliance in identification or your personal position, and perspective, towards the issue of the “death penalty”. Responses are confidential and will be graded objectively, based on student’s independent, reflective analysis of their own individual personal perspectives, and application of the information.
Explanation and Application
Then, Discuss, and describe, the nature of political debate, surrounding the issue of the death penalty, and explain how your personal position toward the issue has changed or been reinforced, with regard to application to crime, punishment and justice in Texas, based on what you learned from the movie.
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