Race Relations Between The Police And The African American Community

1490 Words6 Pages
The OJ Simpson murder case was an event that transfixed the nation over 20 years ago, with everyone who was around back then having some recollection of the whole ordeal. Today, that same case in entering back into the public consciousness, as a new television series dramatizing the events, entitled “The People vs. OJ Simpson”, just premiered. In an op-ed for the New York Times, John McWhorter pens an argument that the case was symbolic of race relations between the police and the African-American community. McWhorter, an African-American, goes into detail about how he did not understand why his community was cheering back in 1995 about Simpson being acquitted. McWhorter even believed that Simpson was guilty. However, he does now…show more content…
In order to make tell this story and make his argument, McWhorter uses the rhetorical appeals available to make his case. McWhorter opens his article by employing the appeal of kairos and telos, by describing the overall timeframe of penning the article, as the case and “…months of lurid televised court testimony- now being dramatized in a series…” (McWhorter, 2016). By adding this piece into his argument, McWhorter is able to ground the audience into the time frame of when his argument is being presented, as this case is going to, once again, enter the public conscience. McWhorter adds the use of telos by adding the reason why he wrote this article, by explaining that he “…wasn’t one of them.”, an African-American that did not cheer when Simpson was acquitted of the two murders, and proceeds to explain why so (McWhorter). By starting off his argument by giving the major reason why McWhorter is arguing his case, with giving the setting of his argument, the audience is able to see why this op-ed is relevant in this moment, with an opposing view of past events being prepared to be delivered. The rhetorical appeal that McWhorter greatly employs is the appeal of ethos, in order to establish credibility between him, the argument that is presented, and to the audience. The first instance of McWhorter establishing his ethos is by stating that he “… wasn’t one of them.”, with them being “…black people
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