Composition – Block 3
22 August, 2011
Quotation Comment/Purpose “Five score years ago, a great American, in whose symbolic shadow we stand today, signed the Emancipation Proclamation. This momentous decree came as a great beacon light of hope to millions of Negro slaves who had been seared in the flames of withering injustice.”
| This was a very good way to start off the speech. Martin Luther King Jr. starts by recalling when Abraham Lincoln signed the Emancipation Proclamation, which was the first step to Black freedom, and that what they were doing then was the next phase.
| “This note was a promise that all men, yes, black men as well as white men, would be guaranteed the ‘unalienable Rights’ of ‘Life, Liberty and the Pursuit of Happiness.’ It is obvious today that America has defaulted on this promissory note, insofar as her citizens of color are concerned. Instead of honoring this sacred obligation, America has given the Negro people a back check, a check which has come back marked ‘insufficient funds.”
| Here Martin Luther shows that the Negro people deserve to be free just as much as any other American white person. He uses an interesting metaphor to describe what America has done to the Negro people. Martin Luther does this, because it would fit well with the audience. He knew the audience would respond well to it.
| “We have also come to this hallowed spot to remind America of the fierce urgency of Now. This is no time to engage in the luxury of cooling off or to take the tranquilizing drug of gradualism. Now is the time to make real the promises of democracy. Now is the time to rise from the dark and desolate valley of segregation to the sunlit path of racial justice. Now is the time to lift our nation from the quicksands of racial injustice to the solid rock of brotherhood. Now is the time to make justice a reality for...
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