Letter From Birmingham Jail Pathos

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Every person is supposed to have equal rights and opportunities, since every citizen is born equal. Sadly, however, before the Civil Rights Movement, that wasn’t true. Any African American living in the United States was treated far worse than how they were supposed to be treated. They were disrespected, denied rights, and their freedom to go places were commonly restricted by signs that said; “Whites only,” or “No colored people allowed”. Martin Luther King, Jr. was a major activist in The Civil Rights Movement, and he was thrown in jail many times for his nonviolent protests. He explains and defends his motivation for change in his famous “I Have a Dream” speech and in “ A letter from Birmingham Jail”. The Civil Rights Movement was caused …show more content…

Black citizens have waited a century for equal rights, yet still struggle for equal rights, “Five score years ago, a great American… signed the Emancipation Proclamation… But one hundred years later, the Negro still is not free.” (Page 261, para. 2-3). This states that they were promised equal rights 100 years ago, and haven’t received them nevertheless. King’s speech also talks about their hopes and beliefs that they will one day be treated as equals by using pathos: “... We refuse to believe that the bank of justice is bankrupt. We refuse to believe that there are insufficient funds in the great vaults of opportunity of this nation… I have a dream that one day my four little children will one day live in a nation where they will not be judged by the color of their skin but by the content of their character.” (Page 262-263, para. 5 and 20). King is saying that they believe it’s possible for people of different races to be able to treat each other as equals. It’s not possible the world to run out of justice, and there are no limits to the amount of opportunities that can be offered to all …show more content…

He defends his actions and shows his moral view of the situation, as so with his logos quote “Since we so diligently urge people to obey the Supreme Court’s decision of 1954 outlawing segregation in the public schools, at first glance it may seem rather paradoxical for us consciously to break laws… A just law is a man made code that squares with the moral law or the law of God. An unjust law is a code that is out of harmony with the moral law.” (Page 276, para. 15 and 16), and this quote is explaining why it’s okay to follow some laws while protesting and disobeying other laws. Numerous laws are morally right, while other laws are completely illogical and aren’t morally right. He also exercises the importance of “Now”, why it’s important that they are given equal rights “Now”. King states he has heard “ The word “Wait!” and “It has ringed in the ear of every Negro with piercing familiarity,” along with “This wait has almost always meant ‘Never,” therefore “Justice too long delayed is justice denied.” (Page 275, para. 13). King is saying that if they don’t act, if they keep waiting for change to happen by itself, it will never come. It won’t ever happen and nothing will ever change and black citizens will still be treated

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