american national government 13

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Week 2 – Discussion 1

Policy and Your Life

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Prepare: Prior to beginning work on this discussion question, read Chapters 3 and 4 in American Government, and review the Week 2 Instructor Guidance. In addition, watch the videos provided on federalism: Quick Study of Federalism Part 1 (Links to an external site.)Links to an external site., Quick Study of Federalism Part 2 (Links to an external site.)Links to an external site., and Quick Study of Federalism Part 3 (Links to an external site.)Links to an external site.. Review the Week 2 assignment and the Final Paper assignment for more guidance regarding selecting your policy for your Final Paper, which you will also utilize for this discussion.

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Reflect: The U.S. government’s expansive role in public policy is caught in a swirl of conflicting crosscurrents. On the one hand, popular expectations about government’s responsibility to solve problems often exceed the capacity of state and local authorities to respond effectively. On the other hand, policies developed at the national level may not sufficiently reflect the great diversity of interests across the United States to be effective at the local level. Moreover, the search for effective policy is further complicated by theoretical debates about the constitutional framework of federalism. That is, what limits on national power can be derived from the 10th amendment?

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Write: Select a specific policy or piece of legislation that you are interested in and that directly impacts your current or future profession (i.e., your major). For examples, go to the Week 2 DQ and Final Paper Policy Examples file located in your online classroom. The policy you select should be the same policy that you research for your Final Paper.

In your initial post,

  • Identify your profession or future profession, and provide a brief background on the typical job responsibilities.
  • Discuss what federalism is and why it is important.
  • Discuss your policy or piece of legislation that you have selected for your Final Paper and how federalism impacts it.
  • Discuss the federalism challenges that the policy you have selected is creating or facing.

For example:

  • If you are an education major, how are local, state, and federal government policies affected by the Every Student Succeeds Act or some other piece of education-related legislation?
  • If you are a criminal justice major, how does recent legalization of marijuana in some states affect local, state, and federal marijuana laws?
  • If you are a business major, how does the insurance mandate in the Affordable Care Actaffect local, state, and national businesses and their employees?
  • If you are a political science major, how has the recent Citizen’s United ruling affected the amount of money available for campaigns at the local, state, or federal levels?

Your initial post must be at least 300 words. If you are citing statistics our outside resources, please list the website or the reference entry.

Week 2 – Discussion 2

Week 2 Open Forum

This discussion forum allows you the opportunity to explore topics that interest you and relate to the United States government and the political processes we are discussing. Within this forum, you will share critical insights and discuss questions and issues that we are studying, share your personal challenges and successes, and discuss any concepts that you do not completely understand that have been discussed or addressed in our materials this week. Your initial post should focus on your personal experience within the course over the past week and should prompt further discussion from your classmates. Please be sure to address the following questions:

  • What policy did you decide on for your Final Paper? What research have you found to support your ideas? Is your research reliable and unbiased?

In addition to the questions above, also address at least one of the following questions as you reflect on the learning week:

  • What was the most interesting and/or intriguing concept you learned about during this week?
  • Are there any current events that you can recall that relate to the course concepts we are studying this week?
  • What insights have you had?
  • What concepts are causing you to struggle?
  • What questions have arisen for you at this point?
  • Do you have any helpful tips or ideas to help students better understand the material and course concepts?
  • What questions do you have regarding any of the discussions or assignments that your classmates might be able to provide insight? (Please note, if you have a question for the instructor, be sure to contact them through email or in the Ask Your Instructor forum, as they may not see the question here.)

You are required to post at least 100 total words in the forum this week. You can post one time or ten times; the only requirement is that you post at least 100 words total and that you engage in conversation related to the course materials. Ask questions, answer questions, provide extra resources you found interesting, or engage in a debate (respectfully, of course) about something you learned this week. The only requirement is that your posts must relate to the course content.

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