Rhetorical Analysis of Gabrielle Gifford's "A Senate in the Gun Lobby's Grip"

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Bryce Vanderyacht English 105 Diane Goodman September 19, 2014 Congress is Shooting Blanks As the gun control issue began to heat up a timely find was made, a poem by Carl Sandburg. The first half of the poem reads, “Here is a revolver. It has an amazing language all its own. It delivers unmistakable ultimatums. It is the last word. A simple, little human forefinger can tell a terrible story with it. Hunger, fear, revenge, robbery hide behind it. It is the claw of the jungle made quick and powerful. It is the club of the savage turned to magnificent precision” (Doyle, 2013). This is an incredibly powerful poem that encompasses the terrifying power of a gun. Those who wield it hide behind and rely on its power as they commit horrible…show more content…
Her world came to a crash the day she was shot, point-blank, in front of a grocery store. With all of this gun violence going on recently the Senate has been flooded with gun-control legislation. Some of it is radical but the majority of the laws are no-brainers, like the background check law struck down by the senate earlier in the congressional session. The law required that background checks be given before the purchase of a firearm, and was supported by “Ninety per cent of Americans,” and “eighty-five per cent of gun owners” (Talbot, 2014). Interest groups like the NRA are scaring our legislators into making decisions that do not reflect the wishes of the population as a whole. In order to prevent shootings like those in Connecticut and Colorado, a bill was passed in the House of Representatives requiring a background check before the purchase of a firearm. However, when placed in the hands of the Senate, cowardice got the best of them. Gifford writes “These senators made their decision based on political fear and on cold calculations about the money of special interest…” (Giffords, 2013). Her experience in The Capitol gives her the credibility to be able to criticize these Senators, and her history as a victim of gun violence provides a firsthand account on what this bill could possibly prevent. The ethical rhetoric in this article is mostly, if not all, regarding the author’s credibility and experience. Ethos is the primary rhetoric used by Gifford

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