June 2013 LSAT, LR2, Q4, statistical records of crime rates

Crowdsourcing the June 2013 LSAT:  June 2013 LSAT Explanation Central | About this project If there was one person in my 1L section at UC Hastings who was meant to be a lawyer, it was Nikki Black. I was too naive to realize it at the time, but “I don't care what kind of law I practice, I just want to practice law” is actually a very sensible stance, if you've spent time around lawyers and actually want to do what they do every day. She kicked ass in law school, of course, and became a star on Hastings' vaunted moot court competition teams. I got in an argument with Nikki exactly once””I thought Zuckerberg was intolerable in “The Social Network,” she defended him””and I will never get in an argument with her ever again. Instead, we'll just drink and play video games. I'm proud to have introduced her to my buddy Mike Krolak.

Guest blogger:  Nikki Black

When I finished reading this question, my first thought was "what a slam dunk argument!"  (What can I say, I'm pretty gullible.)  My second thought was, why am I so convinced by this? (Nathan has taught me well.) Because I'm impatient (and not a preeminent LSAT professional), I cruised right to the answer choices to see if anything jumped out. I'm looking for an answer that correctly describes the strategy of argumentation used.

A.  The argument does not address any contrary positions. What if crime rates are calculated by robots, which are incapable of motive? (Trust me, I'm a walking Voight-Kampff Machine.) This can't be it.

B.  I can understand all the words in this answer, that's nice. It's also on the right track: the question doesn't contain any contrary positions, just a conclusion and some convincing statements. Yet, I hesitate, because the argument didn't give "examples." (The word "may" in front of each one makes me suspicious that these aren't things that have happened, but rather things that might happen. Also the "probably" in the first sentence is a red flag.) I'm going to see if there are any other, better choices.

C.  Wow, this is a mouthful. I don't really know what this means, so I'm going to move on for now.

D.  Nope, not a proposed solution in sight. This can't be the correct answer.

E.  Again, no contradictory arguments here. I'm going to say no to this one, too.

Welp, none of the answers were clear winners. Looks like I'm going to have to slog through answer C to determine whether it's the correct answer, or if instead the test writers are trying to fool me with big words. (They will try!)

"A generalization that it assumes to be true:" I like this statement because it acknowledges that the author hasn't offered any facts, just "probablys," and "mays." "Deriving implications" sounds like brainstorming to me (or bullshitting, if you are more cynical.) I like answer C better than answer B because it calls the author out for his wishy-washiness. C is my answer.

Editor's note: I quite like the way Nikki went through the answers here. Rather than agonizing on each answer choice, she dismissed each one of them fairly quickly in pursuit of "the one." She eliminated all five answers on her first pass, which you SHOULD do occasionally... if this never happens, you're not being critical enough. When she didn't find a perfect answer on her first pass, she went back to B and C, which were the least terrible of the five. Since B has the fatal flaw of talking about "examples" when none were provided, the answer must be C. --nathan

Editor's note 2: Yikes, the answer actually turns out to be B! Thanks to the thoughtful readers who pointed this out. My corrected analysis is in the comments. --nathan

About Nikki: I practice immigration law in the sub-specialties of employment-based and family-based immigration.  After the recent passage of the immigration reform bill in the Senate and the Supreme Court's (no brainer) decision in Windsor v. United States, my office has been BUSY.  (Listen up, future law school students: Immigration law is where it's at.)  When I'm not zealously advocating for the rights of immigrants, I'm playing every video game ever and watching Dr. Who.  My nerdy immigration blog "A Geek's Guide to Immigration," is coming soon to my law firm's website, www.dayzadlaw.com.

Please ask questions and/or suggest corrections to anything that seems confusing... we want to make this the best resource we can for LSAT students. We'll have all the June 2013 explanations up as quickly as possible. Thanks for reading. Tell your friends! --nathan

Crowdsourcing the June 2013 LSAT:  June 2013 LSAT Explanation Central | About this project