Martin Luther King Essay

1076 words - 4 pages

The Beginning of a Dream Come True Martin Luther King Jr. is renown for his unwavering views of equality and freedom. His ability to reach a diverse group of people has been undisputedly etched into his reputation. In Martin Luther King Jr.'s "A Letter from Birmingham Jail" addresses actual events that took place during a time when inalienable rights were not granted to African Americans. King manipulates language to expose the depths of his emotions while at the same time establishing his credibility by citing examples of the immoral acts that were imposed on African Americans in Birmingham, Alabama.King uses rhetoric by manipulating language and appealing to the emotions of the reader. This manipulation allows him to gain sympathy for Negroes not only in Alabama but also all over the nation. With over eighty-five pro civil rights affiliated organizations across the South, King tries to help as much as humanly possible in Birmingham. When asked to wait for equality King replies "But when you have seen vicious mobs lynch your mothers and fathers at will and drown your sisters and brothers at whim; when you have seen hate-filled police curse, kick and even kill your black brothers and sisters"¦ then you will understand why we find it difficult to wait" (King 145). In order to gain control of the reader Martin Luther King Jr. includes vivid images of cruel acts that African Americans in Birmingham endured. Concerning this unsettling time in society King could have described many of the immoral and unjust acts that he encountered on a daily basis. Instead he portrayed these situations by asking rhetorical questions about women, children and loved ones bringing the hardships Negroes faced into the lives of men of all cultures. It does not matter if you are black, if you are white, if you are Asian, if you are Hispanic, or if you are a mixture of any race, through King's words you could imagine yourself in any of the situations he describes. With the ability to touch the reader on not only a personal level, but also an intimate one Martin Luther King Jr. began to bridge the gap between the races.The events that arose in Birmingham during the civil rights movement are terribly unsettling as to how someone could possibly be so blind as to deny the apparent logic placed before them. Martin Luther King Jr. states, "Birmingham is probably the most thoroughly segregated city in the United States. Its ugly record of brutality is widely known" (King 143). With this fact widely known it is hard to understand why someone would not want to obey the 1954 ruling of the Supreme Court that desegregated schools across the nation. Throughout the letter King states clearly his views of just and unjust laws and actions that were being implemented in Birmingham at the time. "A law is unjust if it is inflicted on a minority that, as a result of being denied the right to vote had no part in enacting or devising the law" (King 147). During this era in the South, a...

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