Environmental Oceanography: Topics and Analysis
For Students

Chapter Questions

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1:  In a clear sentence or two, explain what you think Jefferson meant by the italicized phrase. Now assess the breadth of your response by considering Questions 3-2, 3-3, and 3-4.

2:  Do you think he was referring solely to thugs who physically brutalize their fellow citizens? Explain.

3:  Could he logically also have been referring to citizens who sought to poison others? In other words, is restraining “poisoners” a legitimate role of government? Explain your answer.

4:  Now, what if a citizen or organization dumps a toxin into water or air that all citizens depend on or if a citizen or organization fills in a wetland that performed valuable ecological functions on which local residents depend? May government under Jefferson’s principle restrain that person or organization?

5:  In the light of the transboundary nature of pollution, is it appropriate that local government by itself (e.g., the coastal city of Newport, Oregon) bear the responsibility for protecting its own environment? May the states and federal government have a legitimate role? Should international agencies be involved? Explain and justify your answer.

6:  Do you share or reject Jefferson’s opinions concerning corporations? Justify your conclusion. Prepare a list of positive and negative contributions corporations make to our environment and economy. Do you conclude corporations have “too much power” in contemporary life? Why or why not?

7:  Do you believe the Court acted correctly in deciding that a corporation was a person? Is the 1886 ruling relevant to the 21st century? Why or why not?

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