Rhetorical Analysis On Civil Disobedience

454 Words2 Pages
American author and motivational speaker, John Canfield once said: “One individual can begin a movement that turns the tide of history. Martin Luther King in the civil rights movement, Mohandas Gandhi in India, Nelson Mandela in South Africa are examples of people standing up with courage and non-violence to bring about needed changes.” True enough, many great changes in history were initiated by individuals who opted not to keep silent in the midst of injustice. Citizens should take action when they feel that the state is implementing unjust laws. But how can you express your objection? – Protest! There are many ways to protest; to make your message come across, but I think symbolic speech is the most effective way.

Symbolic speech – a non-verbal of expression of beliefs or ideas – is a peaceful way to protest against issues with which citizens do not agree. In his book, Civil Disobedience: a Practical Guide, Malcolm Coxall stated that the symbol triggers a subliminal reaction and symbols are often used as unifying motifs in large mass movements. In other words, actions or symbols expressing certain ideas can strongly influence the public consciously or unconsciously. So, not only
…show more content…
People could join the protest without fear of being arrested. Since they are not violating the law, there is no need for them to hide what they think regarding the issue. Thoreau shared his experience when he was jailed for refusing to pay his tax to protest against slavery. He violated the law. It doesn’t matter whether he was fighting a good cause; very few would join him for not many would implicate themselves in activities considered unlawful. Some might argue that symbolic speech may cause disturbance by attracting too much attention. It can also result to destruction of properties around the area of protest. However, protesters choose symbolic speech because they do not want to cause
Open Document