Rhetorical Analysis of Martin Luther King's I Have A Dream Speech

1751 Words 8 Pages
Martin Luther King Jr.’s “I Have a Dream” speech was made to thousands of people at the Washington Monument while facing the Lincoln Memorial on August 28, 1963. Dr. King called upon Americas to consider all people, both black and white, to be united, undivided and free. His rhetoric harkened back a hundred years past when the Emancipation Proclamation was enacted during Abraham Lincoln’s term as president which abolished slavery and allowed all people living in America to be equal and have equal rights. Unfortunately, in 1963, America had lost sight of this key Constitutional component instilled in the lives of many. For many years, African Americans suffered from persecution and segregation in a class-oriented society. Martin Luther …show more content…
African American slave owners in the South were whipping and beating the ancestors of many future leaders in America today. Even founding fathers that helped create and write the Declaration of Independence, such as Benjamin Franklin and Thomas Jefferson, “rightfully” owned and held slaves in captivity to work on their family estates. Martin Luther King Jr. embraced the hatred of many African Americans and some white citizens that surfaced as a social undertone and related their plight of discrimination to such lofty historical documents, as the Declaration of Independence and the Emancipation Proclamation. These documents failed their intended purpose, which proposed freedom to all, both ideologically and realistically. Martin Luther King Jr, spoke these words to the country, from the mountaintops of Colorado to the valleys of Mississippi: “When the architects of our republic wrote the magnificent words of the Constitution and the declaration of Independence, they were signing a promissory note to which every American was to fall heir. This note was a promise that all heir. This note was a promise that all men would be guaranteed the inalienable rights of life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness” (King, 1963 para. 4). The Declaration of Independence grants citizens with equal rights for all races of Americans that defines this country as a democracy. Every man wanted their own pursuit of happiness, no
Open Document