The Assassination Of President John F. Kennedy 's Speech Essay

1406 Words Dec 9th, 2015 6 Pages
On November 27th of 1963, five days following the assassination of President John F. Kennedy, Vice President Lyndon Baines Johnson gave a televised speech in front of the House and Senate addressing Kennedy’s death and Johnson’s future presidential plans. His thorough use of pathos effectively brought the nation together to express their grief and agree to move forward in Kennedy’s honor. His speech is supported through the heavy use of anaphora, antithesis, and frequent changes in tone. Johnson’s speech, “Let Us Continue,” was given during an extremely emotional time for America. He wanted to reflect that mood to connect with and gain empathy from the audience, which he would later use to pick up his causes and drive them forward with the help of Americans. We see this tactic begin to come into play when Johnson says, “... An assassin 's bullet has thrust upon me the awesome burden of the Presidency. I am here today to say I need your help. I cannot bear this burden alone. I need the help of all Americans, and all America.” In addition to gaining sympathy from the audience, Johnson characterizes the assassin. Because he “thrust” this awful “burden” upon Johnson, the audience is reminded of the selfish, horrendous crime he has committed. Additionally, Johnson uses pathos here to show Americans that he needs their help, making them feel an urgent sense of importance. The use of “all” provides the audience with a feeling of involvement in their nation. In the speech’s most…

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