Bias, Rhetorical Devices, and Argumentation

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Com220 – Week 1
Assignment – Bias, Rhetorical Devices, and Argumentation

The speech in which I choose to complete my review on was the “1992 Republican National Convention Address: A Whisper of AIDS” by May Fisher (1992) • What are some examples of bias, fallacies, and specific rhetorical devices in the speech you selected?

For this question I would first like to address the question of fallacies as while the speech has to do with a serious topic, I found the tone of the speech to be using the scare tactic technique. Sentences such as this “…or listening in the quiet of your home, to recognize that AIDS virus is not a political creature.” Using the word creature put the image of a monster or something from your nightmare into your imagination. Other scare tactics used would be “littering its pathway with the bodies of the young” and “If you do not see this killer stalking your children, look again.” These statements bring terrible over the top images to mind, with no other purpose other than to scare you into following the direction laid out by the speaker. Also such fallacies as the slippery slope are used. In the paragraph: AIDS is the third leading killer of young adult Americans today. But it won’t be third for long, because unlike other diseases, this one travels. Adolescents don’t give each other cancer or heart disease because they believe they are in love, but HIV is different; and we have helped it along. We have killed each other with our ignorance, our prejudice, and our silence.” The suggestion is made that one action will lead to the next, which may or may not be truth.

Regarding the issue of bias among the reading in this paragraph, I believe that the bias by spin is used in the following section of the reading, “With the President’s leadership, much good has been done. Much of the good has gone unheralded, and as the President has insisted, much remains to be done. But we do the President’s cause no good if we praise the American...
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