20 Ideas To Consider When Looking For A Controversial Essay Topic On Values

While English classes often work on persuasive essays and research papers, there are times when students have to write about their values. The student may be required to write about their own values, or they may have to take a stand on a controversial topic. If the exact topic is not mentioned in the writing prompt, students can always use one of the following 20 ideas to start their controversial essay on values.

Controversial Essay Topics on Values

  1. Considering the harm that they cause is similar to illicit drugs, should all tobacco products be outlawed completely?
  2. Employees are often tested for drugs before they are hired by a company. Does pre-employment drug testing infringe on the employee's right to privacy?
  3. Should abortion be legal?
  4. If the goal of a prison sentence is to make the prisoner less likely to commit the crime, what is the point of the death penalty? Should the death penalty be abolished? Which crimes deserve the death penalty?
  5. During Prohibition, alcohol was outlawed and a large black market developed to supply alcohol to the United States. Does outlawing something only cause a larger black market?
  6. Are atheists less moral than Christians or other religious groups?
  7. Nuclear waste has to be monitored and controlled for decades and centuries after it is created. Due to the risks involved, should nuclear weapons and nuclear energy be outlawed?
  8. Should doctor-assisted suicide be allowed?
  9. One of the few things that people are supposed to have total control of is their body. With this in mind, should prostitution be legalized? What are the positives and negatives of legalizing prostitution?
  10. Is online dating a better alternative to meeting people in real life?
  11. Animal testing saves lives by finding new medicines and treatments. At the same time, it can take the life of the animal. Is animal testing necessary and should it be outlawed?
  12. People are allowed the freedom of speech in a democracy, but does freedom of speech mean that they can use hate speech?
  13. Should prisoners be denied their right to vote during and after their prison sentence?
  14. At what age should people be allowed to vote, drink alcohol or drive a car?
  15. Should minors be given a mandatory curfew until they are 18 years old?
  16. Is it morally permissible for advertisers to market directly to children?
  17. Should news shows talk about celebrities or should they only focus on “real” news?
  18. Should minors be allowed to have reproductive rights or purchase birth control without their parents' approval?
  19. Should parents be legally allowed to spank their children?
  20. If a parent gives their child a present, are they allowed to take it back to punish the child? Does the child or the parent own the child's belongings?

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