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Rhetorical Analysis Of "Gays Have An Equal Right To The Folly Of A Las Vegas Wedding"

753 words - 4 pages

With his political cartoon, David Horsey provides an effective counter-argument to a common anti-gay claim through the use of irony and comedy.

Horsey addresses the argument that gay marriage would ruin the sanctity of marriage. The cartoon was made around April, at the same time as Supreme Court rulings on the Defense Of Marriage Act and Proposition 8. By addressing the argument, Horsey is using pathos to allow the reader to make their own conclusion that this claim is incorrect. Rather than stating right out that the claim is incorrect, he proves this to the reader through ironic and comedic imagery and still allows the reader to come to their own conclusion. Horsey places his comic in a 24-hour Las Vegas chapel to prove his point, pointing out a major flaw in the anti-gay argument, which is that not all current heterosexual marriage is sacred. Rather, a large portion of the weddings that take place in Las Vegas are down under the influence of alcohol, not love, like with the intoxicated couple waiting in the window in the cartoon. He also promotes the idea that spontaneous Las Vegas weddings are not a privilege, but a imbecility that gays should also have the right to partake in.

Horsey uses irony as a form of pathos to show the failure of the anti-gay argument. By placing the scene inside a Las Vegas chapel, he is able to depict the multiple sins that occur in the city, all of which also defile a sacred institution. These include the divorce lawyer's phone number, the alcohol, the cigarette, and the gambling. While these appear to be insignificant details in the background, they are actually supplying the reader with evidence of a faulty argument. Each of these is a sin that is equally as sacrilegious as homosexuality, yet exist where gay marriage is not allowed to. These examples of irony also help point out the irony of Christian hate for gays, as many Christians claim that their hate is based on a part of the bible while they ignore other rules from that same section, such as the eating of shellfish.

Placing the cartoon inside the Las Vegas chapel also allows Horsey to utilize humor to connect...

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