Rhetorical Analysis

Topics: Prison, Criminal justice, Punishment Pages: 4 (1367 words) Published: March 8, 2014

In “Bring Back Flogging”, Jeff Jacoby addresses the problems within America's criminal justice system. He gives many reasons why imprisonment simply does not work, and suggests that corporal punishment should be used as an alternative. Published in the Boston Globe, a newspaper well known for being liberal, Jacoby provides a conservative view and directs his argument towards those who strongly support imprisonment and view corporal punishment to be highly barbaric and inhumane. However, in order to shed light on our current situation, Jacoby discusses the dangers that we face though our criminal justice system a nd shows concern that imprisonment is doing more harm than good. In effect, Jacoby looks to the past for solutions, and despite knowing the liberal views of his audience, refers to the Puritans' use of flogging to display historical background of corporal punishment in America. Furthermore, Jacoby uses statistical data and refers to experts such as a Princeton criminologist and a former Supreme Court justice in order to further convince his audience. He makes an appeal to emotion by mentioning rape cases within prisons. Through effective rhetorical strategy, Jacoby argues that imprisonment contains too many flaws to be used in the American criminal justice system, and suggests flogging as an alternative.

Jacoby uses ethos within his essay by displaying a conservative yet credible persona that expresses great concern for the well-being of those wrongfully affected by imprisonment. One concern Jacoby addresses is that for almost every crime committed, the penalty will always results in imprisonment, which is to say that no matter what the crime is, small or large, everyone will receive the same type of treatment (Jacoby 193). Subsequently, Jacoby clarifies that imprisonment is an unfair punishment which as a result, portrays Jacoby's good will. Jacoby does not want to see innocent people being harmed, which is why corporal punishment is...
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