Research Links & Critical Thinking Questions for May 2017 Issues

Apr 20, 2017 | Ideas For Teachers


For further research, please see the links below. Links have been shortened for your convenience. Issue 1: Syrian Missile Strikes Statement by President Trump on Syria Bernie Sanders’ Opposition to Missile Strikes Visual Guide to Missile Strikes on Syrian Airbase Heritage Foundation on Missile Strikes Video Brookings Institute Pros & Cons to Missile Strikes Issue 2: Minimum Wage U.S. Department of Labor – Minimum Wages by State Raise the Minimum Wage U.S. Chamber of Commerce Article National Women’s Law Center on Minimum Wage CNBC Article on Universal Basic Income Congressional Budget Office Report


Help students develop their critical-thinking skills on legislative issues with these essay questions. Issue 1: Syrian Missile Strikes

  1. Please read the pro and con arguments in the Brookings Institute article (link above). Which side do you agree most with, and why?
  2. Will military intervention solve the Syrian conflict? Why or why not?
  3. Does the Syrian regime’s use of chemical weapons on Syrian civilians justify the U.S. missile strikes?
  4. What could potentially go wrong as a result of the U.S. missile strikes on the Syrian airbase? What could go right?
  5. Should the U.S. intervene in Middle East controversies such as the Syrian Civil War? Where should we draw the line?

Issue 2: Minimum Wage

  1. Using the U.S. Department of Labor link above, see if your state has a minimum wage law. How does your state compare to other states? Do you think it should be higher or lower than it is?
  2. How does the minimum wage issue relate to income, gender and race inequality?
  3. Please read the CNBC article (link above). Should the U.S. should establish a “universal basic income?” Why or why not?
  4. If you worked at a job that paid the current minimum wage of $7.25, you would work one hour and receive about enough money to pay for a fast food combo meal. Is that fair?
  5. Do you think that if the minimum wage was raised, it would ultimately help or hurt workers?