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Ying/Yang: The Pacifist And The Antagonist

1744 words - 7 pages

Ying/Yang: The Pacifist and the Antagonist
America: land of the free, unless you were a black American during or before the 1960’s. With such tribulation of a community as that experienced by African Americans, come people with an equally powerful passion for revolution. That passion was the driving force behind two people particularly who led the two of the biggest turning points during the civil rights movement. Both, Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. with his “I Have a Dream” and Malcolm X with his “The Ballot or the Bullet” speeches, had the same objective in mind, but took different approaches in conveying their messages. Together they create a large enough message for people to focus the ...view middle of the document...

King used this pacifistic approach to keep his fight peaceful amongst the people and to keep hope in their heart by directing the focus to the prospects of the future, and not to fester hatred stemmed by ruthless history. The optimistic tone made for a connection to a larger demographic of people and created an argument that most people cannot negate. The majority of people want peace and Dr. King knew that taking that approach would work allow him to connect with the masses.
Dr. King uses logos in trying to express his quest for freedom. In paragraphs 3-5 of King’s speech, he compares the words of the Constitution and the Declaration of Independence, to a check written to the citizens of the nation, and the injustice occurring, to the nation’s empty bank account (King, 1963). He uses this metaphor to appeal to reason with the crowd, because everyone understands money and can relate. Without money in an account, a check is nothing more than a piece of paper with some numbers on it. King’s point was the Declaration of Independence and the Constitution were nothing more than a piece of paper with words on it, because those words had not been backed by action. Dr. King uses this technique to remind Americans that the African Americans were not being granted their promised wage by the government.
Where the title, and what some would note as the most memorable portion of Dr. King’s speech, came from, is his imaginative use of rhetoric. “I have a dream that one day this nation will rise up and live out its true meaning of its creed: “We hold these truths to be self evident: that all men are created equal.” I have a dream that one day on the red hills of Georgia the sons of former slaves and the sons of former slave-owners will be able to sit down together at a table of brotherhood. I have a dream that one day…” Dr. King uses this conduplicatio to emphasis and solidify the joyous potential of being “one nation.” He does this again in paragraph fifteen when he repeats, ”Let freedom ring…” and then goes on to name mountains throughout the geography of America (King, 1963). King does so to cover an area of the united states so broad, that most people know at least one of the mountains and can relate to the area he is speaking of, which is a good example of King’s creative use of pathos and rhetoric. King uses metaphorical imagery in throughout his speech. He uses phrases like, “a state sweltering with the heat of injustice – sweltering with the heat of oppression, will be transformed into an oasis of freedom and justice,” and “hew out of the mountain of despair a stone of hope”. He used these metaphors to better create a frame of reference and add value to the meaning of his words.
Malcolm’s speech uses a tone expressing frustration for the oppression of Blacks in America in hopes to pursued African Americans into action. Malcolm wanted the rights that the United States of America were founded on, to be equally functioning and accessible for all colors...

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