Malcolm X "The Bullet or the Ballot Anlysis"

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The Civil Rights Era of the 1960’s was one of the many landmarks in American History. Because it was the first time in over 300 years that African-Americans in the “Land of the Free” had finally overcome their suppression and were at last free. It wouldn’t have possible without the leadership of many Civil Rights Activists such as Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. However one Civil Rights Activist stands out from the rest: Malcolm X. A convert to Islam, Malcolm X took the pilgrimage to Mecca where he witnessed fellow Muslims of various races coming together without any discrimination. This motivated Malcolm X to take a stance in America’s Civil Rights Movement to desegregate America. Known for his more “violent” approach to ending segregation, Malcolm X was notable for his speech “The Ballot or the Bullet” in April of 1964. Malcolm X uses logical reason and his charismatic appeal to get African-Americans to take to either elect new congressmen or use violence to desegregate America.

Malcolm X successfully connects to his listeners by appealing to their emotions. All of his listeners are descendents of former slaves and he uses this to his advantage. In his speech the “The Ballot or the Bullet” he says that his audiences “mothers and fathers invested sweat and blood” yet the audience is not allowed to get anything back. Immediately Malcolm X’s audience would have moved as they recollect the horrors their ancestor had to face and about their own struggle to freedom and how they worked hard to let their children become free and escape the hardships they faced growing up. And now the children of the current generation are facing the same hardships, and according to Malcolm X, “There's more segregation now”. By doing so Malcolm X builds up frustration and anger in his audience.

After arousing up his audience, Malcolm X sets down his approach to the problem of segregation. He then stresses the importance of “the ballot” and “the bullet”, as he puts it, and how...
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