I Speak Tonight For The Dignity Of Man And The Destiny Of Democracy

1413 Words Feb 19th, 2016 null Page
On March 15, 1965 Lyndon B. Johnson gave a speech, “We Shall Overcome,” to Congress with intentions to pass a Civil Rights bill, allowing African-Americans the right to vote. The speech was given just one week after violent police attacks in Selma, where police beat up those planning to march to Montgomery for their voting rights. Although, the speech was given in front of Congress, it’s evident that he’s reaching out to the American public, as well. He uses many appeals and rhetorical devices to make a point to America, and Congress, that African-Americans deserve voting rights. He starts off his speech, “I speak tonight for the dignity of man and the destiny of Democracy. I urge every member of both parties, Americans of all religions and of all colors, from every section of this country, to join me in that cause.” In these first two sentences he is already making this speech relevant to all Americans. He does this by broadening his audience when he talks about both parties, and all races, religions, and locations. By saying “I speak tonight for the dignity of man,” it’s evident that he’s advocating for, not only, the rights of African-Americans but for equality of all people. By choosing to use the word “man” it broadens who he is talking about, and shows he desires all people to have equal rights, regardless of skin color. Also, he is taking responsibility, as President, and calling on his fellow Americans to take responsibility, as well, by asking Americans to…

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