Letter from a Birmingham Jail
Dr. Martin Luther King Jr., a civil rights leader, was put into jail after being part of the Birmingham campaign in April 1963. He was the president of the Southern Christian Leadership Conference and was asked by an Alabama group to come to Birmingham. He and members of his organization joined The Alabama Christian Movement for Human Rights and organized non-violent protests against racial segregation. Because of these nonviolent protests, many of his followers were put into jail. Alabama clergymen published a announcement in the paper stating blacks should not support Martin Luther King Jr. and the other protesters. While in jail, Dr. King replied with a letter directed towards these men and the rest of the community. Martin Luther King Jr. argued for nonviolent protest with the use of ethos, logos, and pathos in his “Letter from a Birmingham Jail”. Ethos
Martin Luther King Jr. is a very smart and reasonable man. He explained why he is in Birmingham and he compared himself to Apostle Paul and other prophets that wanted to bring freedom. He also wanted to bring freedom to other cities and so he promised to help the Alabama group with the segregation issue. King, being the intelligent and honest man he is, put his argument on the same academic and religious level as the clergymen; he made it hard for the men to prove him wrong. King was able to relate to other groups of people in the audience based on religion, race, and beliefs. He connected to everyone which made him a respectful and true person. Logos
In the clergymen's letter, the men stated that they do not approve the protests that took place in Birmingham. The clergymen felt that Dr. King and his people were disrupting the peace with the city. These men failed to notice that The Alabama Christian Leadership Conference had tried times before to make peace with the city. Nothing was ever done about the issue. An example Dr. King stated was that the legislature of...
Cited: King Jr., Dr. Martin Luther. “Letter from a Birmingham Jail.” Discovering Arguments. Ed. William Palmer. Boston: Prentice Hall, 2012. 273-284. Print.
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