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Use Of Logos, Ethos, And Pathos In The Article, Is Santa Claus A Conspiracy?

1270 words - 5 pages

Jay Mocks article “Is Santa Clause a Conspiracy?” first appeared on The River Journal website on December 11th, 2009. Mock, an online blogger who has the mindset that there are conspiracies behind many things that go on in the world, seeks to encourage readers to discover whether there is a conspiracy behind Santa Claus. If so, whether or not it is maintained by the lies of parents, and whether or not their intentions are good because they support good, and even so would that still qualify as a bad thing? “We sometimes knowingly lie or overlook a lie if the reason is to support ‘good’” (Mock p4). The legend of Santa Claus can be the lure to which mankind falls into a ploy of conspiracy that may fortify a manipulative mindset and devious conduct in people. This article is a good example of how conspiracy theorist can appeal to readers through persuasion by the use of three kinds of proofs, reasoning (logos), credibility (ethos), and emotion (pathos). Although this article is a great attention grabber, it lacks the ability to impose the authors’ thoughts and feelings upon its readers.
Several rhetorical concepts are used to approach the readers of this article, these being proofs known as reasoning (logos), credibility (ethos), and emotion (pathos). Conspiracy theorists, such as Mock, often use logic or reason to attract readers. They understand that conspiracies are seen as lies and paranoia, so to build their audience they appeal to their logical side. In today’s society logic is everything, and being able to prove something is what is important. Making a reference to a factual document or book is always a source of proof. The reference towards a dictionary is used because it is something we use every day, something that is important and holds the definition to what we as a race thinks something is. Credibility will almost always be a conspiracy theorists lowest argumentative prospect, because conspiracy theorists are usually condemned for their beliefs. Mock makes no reference to an actual person or expert figure. Emotion
In Mocks article his perception on Santa Claus is clearly stated throughout the entire piece. He begins by immediately discrediting the belief in Santa Claus, “After a certain age we all understand Santa Claus is only a childhood mythical character. . . Is that a conspiracy; many people knowingly lying?” (Mock p1). Not only does he questions the myth and harshly accuses parents of being cruel for lying, but he also implies that the purpose of Santa Claus could be evil. “My dictionary says a conspiracy is: combing for evil purpose. So I guess the question hinges on whether Santa Claus has an evil purpose” (Mock p2). Mock continues his article by giving an example of how a child would act upon his suspicions about Santa Claus and whether or not that child is to believe his older brother. The young boy has many internal conflicts about the consequences of exposing the truth about Santa Claus and if he himself believes all...

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