Rhetorical Devices In Jfk Speech

1474 Words 6 Pages
Haneen Halisi
Professor Eberle
English 1A
22 September 2016
Rhetorical Analysis: Why John F. Kennedys Speech Was Effective
In the early sixties equality in the United States was not enforced however segregation because of the color of a person 's skin was. On June 11th 1963 John F Kennedy addresses the Civil Rights Movement. His speech was written in response to the U.S. National Guard that was sent to protect the African American students who were enrolling at the University of Alabama. Kennedy took it upon himself to address this topic. As a political leader Kennedy reaches out and askes the citizens of the United States for help. Kennedy goes through and explains that the United States was founded on the principles of equality. Kennedy then
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Kennedy uses emotion as a method of persuasion. When he says “if an American because his skin is dark... Cannot enjoy the full and free life which all of us want, then who Among Us would be content to have the color of his skin changed and stand in his place?” (John F. Kennedy). This quote shows how Kennedy is forcing his audience to identify with African Americans. He is pushing his audience to try and relate to what African Americans are going through. Appealing to an audience 's emotions is a very effective strategy when trying to persuade them, especially when the writer appeals to an emotion such as sympathy. Having his audience think about what life would be like if they were being treated unequally helps to persuade and convince the audience to support the idea of equality no matter your race or the color of your skin. Also the tone Kennedy uses in this quote is very compassionate and caring. Because the tone he uses is so compassionate and caring it proves to his audience that this is a matter of importance not just for the country as a whole but also to …show more content…
His argument has plausible claim and gives his audience good cause to believe it. The facts and claims he gives in his speech are supported by good reason and evidence, and because of his credibility his sources are reliable. For example, Kennedy gives the following statistics: A negro baby born in 1963 has half a chance of completing high school than a white born baby, one third as much chance of completing college, and twice as much chance as becoming unemployed. After stating the facts and giving us the statistics he then proposes a logical solution when he says “Next week I shall ask the Congress of the United States to act, to make a commitment it has not fully made in this century to the proposition that race has no place in American life or law” (John F. Kennedy). And also when he states “I am, therefore, asking the Congress to enact legislation giving all Americans the right to be served in facilities which are open to the public…” (John F. Kennedy). Kennedy is stating the facts and solutions as a way to better persuade his audience. By proposing these solutions Kennedy is giving his audience a logical solution to

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