Analysis Outline of “Politics, Patriotism, And The Public’s Perception of Protest” by Emma Rigaud

Thesis: “Protest does not signify the absence of patriotism; rather, it is an exhibition of patriotism. Protest provides all people with an equal opportunity to raise awareness of the issues that plague their country and argue for ways in which it can be made better.” “One key lesson being that protesting is an essential part of American democracy whose practice should be valued and respected by all.”

Audience: Modern Americans who view the act of protesting itself as disruptive and unpatriotic.

Ethos: “I believe the same can be said about today’s society, and how white Americans are unwilling to acknowledge the continued oppression of blacks.” This is the only instance in which the author uses “I” and doesn’t share any personal anecdotes or obvious political opinions.

Logos: “The outright denial of the right to free speech and the right to assemble peaceably clearly conflicts with America’s ideals. It is unreasonable for a person to take out their anger on the act of protesting itself, as this is only a way to discredit what others are protesting for.” The author uses logic to show that the American ideal of protest being a protected act makes protest patriotic. They also show that attacking protesting itself only draws attention away from the issues at hand.

Pathos: “Americans view King’s preferred method of nonviolent direct action, described here, as the “correct” model for how people should protest today. They value him because of how peaceably he was able to enact positive change, although King wasn’t as revered in the 1960s as he is today. Instead, he was portrayed as a troublemaker with ill intentions, which proves that it takes time for people to adjust to the positive change that is so often brought about by protest.” The author uses a former negative representation of Martin Luther King Jr., a venerated figure in American culture and politics, to appeal to the emotions of readers.

Kairos: “The past decade has seen a rise in the number of movements for change, as well as in the number of participants.” “That said, there is a dangerous notion floating around that protesting is something destructive, as opposed to something constructive.” The author connects the current political climate, resulting protests, and further scrutiny of those movements to make a case for protecting Americans’ right to protest.


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