An Analysis Of Emmett Rensin's The Smug Style In American Liberalism

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In Emmett Rensin 's Vox article, "The Smug Style in American Liberalism", he criticizes the smug air found within the minds of modern liberals. He lays out the mindset "smug style" as "…a way of conducting politics, predicated on the belief that American life is not divided by moral difference or policy divergence… but by the failure of half the country to know what 's good for them." He gains a sense of ethos in the essay due to his credibility as a liberal writer and cements his reliability using relevant examples to solidify his argument. He plays upon the emotions of his audience with an expert use of pathos with references to real examples of the harsh treatment of people deemed "wrong" by liberals. He also highlights common unflattering traits that are common with the liberal masses. The use of these rhetorical appeals and the examination of the aforementioned liberal traits allows Rensin to make a compelling and convincing argument in his essay. Rensin identifies common traits shared by liberals and, to cut down on length, I will put them into three succinct…show more content…
In his essay, Emmett Rensin utilizes real-world examples in order to trigger emotion in his audience and solidify his argument as the truth. While this essay does not often utilize the rhetorical appeal of ethos, an amount of credibility can be distinguished from Rensin 's position as a liberal writer. In his argument, he highlights three major faults found commonly amongst liberal masses: the knowing, the judgement, and the hate. While all three faults are internally linked, each has its own significant blemish on the liberal image. While he does not directly state his audience, one can assume that Rensin wrote not only to call the offending liberals out for their errors, but also to inform a younger audience in order to evoke change within the liberal community. This article, while rather long and repetitive, makes several important observations and implications on the liberal media and the liberal

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