English Composition 1
Section 12, Spring 2012
Martin Luther King Jr., Letter from Birmingham Jail - Most Effective Argument
I feel Dr. Martin Luther King’s use of facts and history was an effective argument because it not only gave reason to why he would be in Birmingham but also gave also made a convincing argument of why his cause was justified throughout history by giving examples of times in history where actions like his were necessary and actions of wrongdoing was justified through law.
In his letter to the clergymen, by referring to the bible a number of times, he appealed to the religious beliefs of the clergymen. He shows this when he refers to Apostle Paul, in where Apostle Paul would carry his gospel of god beyond his own village and throughout all over the Greco-Roman world, Martin Luther King would carry his gospel of freedom to beyond his own town and throughout all of the South and America.
Dr. Martin Luther King even goes so far as to refer to Jesus Christ, who he describes as an extremist for love and quotes from him, “Love your enemies, bless them that curse you, pray for them that despitefully use you”. Jesus went to extreme lengths to spread his teachings of love, and like Jesus, Dr. King would go to extreme lengths for justice and equality. And he proves this by leading them into the streets to march peacefully, boycotting restaurants and bus stations.
Dr. King also appeals to the sympathetic side of the clergymen when he tells them why his cause cannot ‘wait’ for their ‘constitutional God-given rights”. He goes on to write of why it would be easy for those who never experienced segregation to say wait, but for those who have experienced segregation, it is difficult to wait. Dr. King explains that those who experience segregation find it hard to wait after seeing witness their mothers, fathers lynched by mobs, their brothers and sisters drowned, and beaten and even killed by police officers. And how it...