President John F. Kennedy 's Speech Essay

1234 Words 5 Pages
The 1960s marked a time of great change, turmoil, and innovation in American history. President John F. Kennedy worked hard to ensure the best for the citizens of the United States and that is why, when steel corporations raised their prices 3.5 percent in a time of economic distress, Kennedy responded with outrage. In his speech to the American people on April 11, 1962, President John F. Kennedy used a plethora of rhetorical strategies to persuade the American public to join his crusade against the greed of large steel companies. President Kennedy begins his address by immediately stating his opinion on the issue, that the actions of the steel corporations “constitute a wholly unjustifiable and irresponsible defiance of public interest.” His use of an absolute and unwavering tone establishes an incompatibility between the interests of the public and the recent greedy actions of steel corporations. This creates an ‘us vs. them’ mentality that Kennedy continuously emphasizes throughout his speech, used to further justify his opposition to steel companies as a defense for the “public interest.” After directly stating his opinion, Kennedy shifts his speech towards the current events of the time, citing the “grave crises in Berlin”, the Vietnam War, and the limitations on union members. By creating this context for the issue, Kennedy is able to enhance his dissent towards the steel industry. He explains how “servicemen [are asked] to risk their lives” in Vietnam, yet steel…

Related Documents