Letter From Birmingham Jail Essay

938 words - 4 pages

In the past there were many protest operated to fight for something injust or needed awareness for others to know the wrong doings that are present in our country. People fought for their rights and against the prejudice that they have to face, accomplish justice that every single one of them are fighting for. Dr. Martin Luther King, a leader of the protest against prejudice was able to pursue the rights for African American people. However eight of his fellow clergymen criticized his procedure to protest, but they still supported him. In the "Letter from Birmingham Jail", King wanted to encourage others to rebel against the wrong, even if it is not wise it is right, he was optimistic and yet disappointed. In order for him to convey his tone and purpose he reaches out to people by using allusion, analogy, and ethos.

King employs allusion, to appeal to his audience and convince them that what he is doing is right and necessary. In particular he refers to the Bible, "Was not Paul an extremist for the Christian gospel: 'I bear in my body the marks of the Lord Jesus'." It is coherent that King is compelled to take a stand against the prejudice and racism like the way Paul carried the gospel of Lord Jesus. King relate back to Paul to convey his purpose that Paul suffer for what he believe in and so that his fellow clergymen must take sacrifices for a great cost. Furthermore King speaks about, "Socrates felt that it was necessary to create a tension in the mind so that individuals could rise from the bondage myths and half-truths." To be specific King wants people to know that they must create social awareness like Socrates has done to have others rise against the wrong doing. This help convey King's purpose by implicating that in order for him and Socrates to have others negotiate about the injust they must show civil disobedience. King additionally talks about "Adolf Hitler did many acts in Germany that was "legal" and everything the Hungarian freedom fighters did in Hungary was "illegal," it was illegal to aid and comfort a Jew." Thus in comparison King tells how people who fought for freedom were taking action that is known to be illegal, when police use violence to stop the non-violent protest it was legal for them to do so. This present that moral things can not be judge from being legal or not, it refers to King doing the right thing even though it was illegal it was not wrong.

Then King uses ethos in order to give the audience reasons to keep on listening and to know that he is trustworthy and credible man. For instance he tells the reader that he " can urge men to obey the 1954 decision...

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