27 September 2012
America’s Freedom Call
We as all Americans know of our past history, Americans were never given the same rights as every person living in America. America was known for its unequal, unjust laws, and segregation. As a result of the segregation occurring in American, African Americans were the most involved ethnic group fighting for equal rights, as defined by in the Declaration of Independence by Thomas Jefferson: “We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain inalienable rights, that among these are Life, Liberty, and the pursuit of Happiness” (80). Throughout our history we have had extraordinary civil rights leaders such as Frederick Douglass, John F. Kennedy, Abraham Lincoln, and Malcolm X who have sacrificed their lives for equal rights in the United States of America. Between the years 1958 to 1968, it was Martin Luther King Jr. who engaged in fighting for the equal rights of African Americans, primarily in the South. King was the most influential civil rights leader in America for a long period of time. During his struggle for civil rights, he was arrested in Birmingham, Alabama for a program of sit-ins at luncheon counters without a permit. As a result of this incident, King composed a famous letter, “Letter from Birmingham Jail” in response to the criticism he received after these nonviolent demonstrations. King states in the very beginning his reasoning for writing the letter as a response to the clergymen’s statement calling his “present activities unwise and untimely”(King 213). He wanted to make clear the misunderstandings from his fellow clergymen. The purpose in his letter was to clarify to them his reasons for engaging in the demonstration. To get his reasoning across to his fellow Clergymen, King uses two compelling rhetorical strategies of logos and pathos to demonstrate his intelligence and ability to...