2014 New Student Summer Reading Form The first academic assignment of every new student for the Wagner College class of 2018 is to complete the New Student Summer Reading. The book will be discussed during Orientation and in each First Year Learning Community. Over the summer, each new student is required to read the book and submit reflection questions online. The reflection questions will be used as a writing sample in the First Year Learning Community. **Please select 4 of the 10 questions to respond to.** Name* First Last Email* Student ID #*Learning Community*LC 1: American Dreams: Leadership and Innovation in a Diverse NationLC 2: Developing Leadership Through EthicsLC 3: Politics in Theater, Literature, and FilmLC 4: Global Traditions and Material ExpressionLC 5: Spanish at Work: Language and Business in the 21st CenturyLC 6: Emerging Global Health ConcernsLC 7: Encountering Others in the New and Old WorldLC 8: Remembering and Representing AmericaLC 9: Minds, Machines, and Human BeingsLC 10: So You Want to be a Human Being?LC 11: The Love-Hate Relationship Between Humans, Microbes, and ChemicalsLC 12: Human Rights and WrongsLC 13: Being Human: Biological and Anthropological PerspectivesLC14: Society and the CityLC 15: Art, Music, and Technology: Spirit Meets Practice in the Visual and Performing ArtsLC 16: Leashed and Unleashed: Animals in ArtLC 17: Micro - Macro Linkage: Microeconomics and National PoliticsLC 18: Global Travel through Cultural Studies.LC 19: Views from the Fringe: Access and Equity in America Through the Lens of Immigrants and Individuals with DisabilitiesResponse Questions New Students must choose 4 of the 10 reflection questions below and submit their responses online by August 3, 2014. 1. Suppose a man has planted a bomb in New York City, and it will explode in 24 hours unless the police are able to find it. Should it be legal for the police to use torture to extract information from the suspected bomber? Should it be legal to torture his innocent friends and family if that is the only way to make the man reveal where the bomb is hidden? 2. Is it just to tax the rich to pay for public services? Should the government tax Bill Gates and other wealthy people and use the money to pay for public schools, hospitals, roads, parks, fire departments, and police departments, or would doing so be unjust? 3. Is it just to tax the rich to give to the poor? Should the government tax Bill Gates and other wealthy people and use the money to supplement the income of unemployed people, single mothers with low incomes, or other poor people? Should the government tax rich people and loan the money, interest-free, to poor kids so that they can go to college? Would all of that be unjust? Why or why not? 4. According to Locke, an unowned thing becomes your property if you “mix your labor” with it. Is that right? If you pick some flowers in an open field, do you have a claim to them? What if you build a fence around the open ocean? Does the ocean become your property? If not, what is the connection between property and labor? 5. According to Locke, your natural right to life is “unalienable”: you must never give it up, and therefore you must never commit suicide. Is he right? Is it morally wrong to commit suicide, even if one is terminally ill and in endless pain? 6. “A just law is blind to the differences between people, and treats everyone equally.” Do you agree? Why or why not? 7. Do you think it’s unjust if some people get paid less money for the same job merely because they are a woman or a member of a racial or ethnic minority? 8. Who should be admitted to colleges and universities? Should admission decisions be made strictly on the basis of academic merit, or should colleges and universities admit students with a variety of academic and other backgrounds and strive for diversity? What would be fair? What is the purpose of higher education, and does it help you to answer this question? 9. Say there is a shipwreck and the captain has to make a choice. He can either escape with his own son, or he can let his son drown but save several hundred of the ship’s passengers. What should he do? If he chooses to save the passengers, his wife will never forgive him. Is she being unreasonable? 10. Some people believe that the purpose of marriage is procreation and, therefore, that there should be no same-sex marriages. Other people believe that same-sex marriage should be permitted because the purpose of marriage is to honor and promote loving relationships between committed adults, regardless of their sex or their ability to procreate. Is it possible to defend a position on same-sex marriage without making a judgment about the purpose and value of marriage?