Some have been dismissed from their churches, have lost the support of their bishops and fellow ministers. To give his readers an idea of the racial injustice African Americans have experienced, King offers a list of injustices. The purpose is to hopefully get the backup from powerful religious leaders and end segregation. First, he apologizes for the length of his letter, but reminds his readers that he is sitting in a jail cell, with nothing else to do but ruminate on the conditions that have brought him there. Then, surprisingly, he turns his own argument on its head by invoking the names of seven men who rose up to meet extreme adversity with extreme response, including Jesus, Abraham Lincoln, and Thomas Jefferson. I doubt that you would so quickly commend the policemen if you were to observe their ugly and inhumane treatment of Negroes here in the city jail; if you were to watch them push and curse old Negro women and young Negro girls; if you were to see them slap and kick old Negro men and young boys; if you were to observe them, as they did on two occasions, refuse to give us food because we wanted to sing our grace together.
He wrote it in April of 1963 when segregation was at its peak in the South. Others have marched with us down nameless streets of the South. King goes into detail about the steps that have gone into this decision to protest, and again focuses on the failings of the white authorities. I would be the first to advocate obeying just laws. An unjust law is a code that a numerical or power majority group compels a minority group to obey but does not make binding on itself.
He doesn't claim to be the foremost authority on Jesus or the greatest political strategist of all time, for instance. Any law that uplifts human personality is just. He used abductive reasoning in creating the nonviolent campaign and planned the direct-action program around Easter time. However, even though the demonstrations were put on hold, the racial and degrading slurs were not removed. They questioned the Negroes' choice to break the law rather than wait for change in a letter they wrote to a local news editor. A law is unjust if it is inflicted on a minority that, as a result of being denied the right to vote, had no part in enacting or devising the law.
I had hoped that the white moderate would understand that law and order exist for the purpose of establishing justice and that when they fail in this purpose they become the dangerously structured dams that block the flow of social progress. Luther effectively uses logos to elicit a number of viewpoints on readers of the letter. The part is filled with a lot of emotion more so because of the actions the police. So he gives a vivid picture of what Black Americans have to go through in the segregated South. Abused and scorned though we may be, our destiny is tied up with America's destiny.
The yearning for freedom eventually manifests itself, and that is what has happened to the American Negro. Alongside the more obvious threats of death, bodily harm, or imprisonment, African Americans suffer from more complex issues like financial uncertainty and a sense of inferiority. His letter evokes ethical appeal for two main reasons; the language used is ethical and suits the topic, and the words come from a credible source. King makes an appeal to logic logos and an appeal to emotion pathos. If today's church does not recapture the sacrificial spirit of the early church, it will lose its authenticity, forfeit the loyalty of millions, and be dismissed as an irrelevant social club with no meaning for the twentieth century. The next day, more young people had arrived to replenish the ranks, and another march occurred. In order to justify his desire for racial justice and equality, Martin Luther King, Jr.
One way that King supports his thesis is by using appeals to emotion. I would agree with St. To preserve the evil system of segregation. He spends an entire paragraph explaining the horrors of segregation, including lynchings, police brutality, poverty, and daily public humiliation. King writing and thinking of a much greater audience than the clergymen to whom the letter is addressed. Not only was it a letter written in an unimaginable circumstance, beginning on margins of the newspaper and continuing on scraps of writing paper supplied by a fellow prisoner but it was the history of the author who made the letter so significant. Knowing that a strong economic-withdrawal program would be the by product of direct action, we felt that this would be the best time to bring pressure to bear on the merchants for the needed change.
Another logical aspect of Kings letter is when he expresses his efforts of negotiations with Birmingham merchants. Purpose King wants to make these men understand the struggle of his people. Back in the 1960s, the only recourse victims of police brutality had was to get their accounts published in the newspaper or tell someone important. Type of paper Academic level Subject area Number of pages Paper urgency Cost per page: Total:. .
King took ownership by synchronizing rhetorical strategies like stating his title and experience, defining his course of action, and providing expressive and logical examples of the current situation to capture readers' attention. King finishes his letter with a few final notes. King On April 16, 1963, Dr. Once King was released from jail, the protests assumed a larger scale and a more confrontational character. King replied directly to the clergymen, but used religious ties to also have his voice heard in the public.
He also persuaded the audiences to get involved with the African-American civil rights movement. Several local religious figures Dr. When these leaders praise the police for preventing violence, they are only concerned about violence against white citizens. But now I must affirm that it is just as wrong, or perhaps even more so, to use moral means to preserve immoral ends. I felt that the white ministers, priests and rabbis of the South would be among our strongest allies.
Can any law enacted under such circumstances be considered democratically structured? Words: 1198 - Pages: 5. There comes a time when the cup of endurance runs over, and men are no longer willing to be plunged into the abyss of despair. To put it in the terms of St. I also hope that circumstances will soon make it possible for me to meet each of you, not as an integrationist or a civil-rights leader but as a fellow clergyman and a Christian brother. I am not unmindful of the fact that each of you has taken some significant stands on this issue. He states that Birmingham is the most segregated city in the united stated due to its unjust treatment to the Negroes. You need to follow your heart and you religious beliefs.