In his speech, “What to the Slave Is the Fourth of July?” Frederick Douglass uses a combination of logic, moral authority, and rhetorical devices to make his point. He begins by noting that most Americans celebrate the Fourth of July as a holiday commemorating freedom from British rule. However, he argues that there is an ironic element in this celebration for African Americans who are still living in bondage despite being born on American soil.
Consider Douglass’s speech “What to the Slave is the Fourth of July?” What logic does he use to make his point?
The core of Douglass’s argument is based upon logical reasoning: He notes that since all men have an inherent right to liberty, African Americans should be equally free under the law. To support this claim, he points out inconsistencies between what the Founding Fathers declared in their Declaration of Independence—that all men are equal—and how they treated African American citizens after independence was won. For example, while they claimed “all men are created equal” they also denied black people basic human rights and kept them enslaved even after winning independence from Britain.
Furthermore, if slavery had been abolished at the time of America’s founding then it would have been easier for America to achieve its goals and become a successful nation state. As such, he raises questions about why were these promises not fulfilled when founding fathers had ample opportunity to do so? His arguments show a clear logical inconsistency between what was said and what was done which ultimately served to demonstrate (the lack) hypocrisy on part of founding fathers with regards to abolition/emancipation slavery among blacks living within US borders as well its wider implications about respect for ones fundamental rights as citizens regardless race or color lineages .
In addition to using logical arguments throughout his speech, Douglass also appeals directly to morality by highlighting human suffering caused by slavery which brings forth compassion among audience members sympathizing with plight endured by fellow countrymen throughout years during enslavement period prior emancipation proclamation issued several decades later . This serves an effective mechanism emphasizing importance true justice requires respecting civil liberties everyone rather than selective group belonging certain socio-political classed , thereby setting foundation making universal appeal regarding legality abolishing slaves entirely US once emancipated within unionized states given diverse ideological perspectives supporting opposing causes thus pushing need examining question posed originally asking ‘what fourth july looks like slave while remaining subjugated could never know freedoms rest society enjoyed?’
Finally , Douglass makes use rhetorical devices furthering argument towards eradicating racism perpetuated government sanctioned laws denying African American individuals same level access public facilities granted white population engendering feeling dismay those affected on daily basis due oppressive practices adopted categorically across board without distinction but contempt specific ethnic backgrounds instead providing hope progress future generations embracing ideals promised our constitution founders stood behind uphold before followed through implementation their own policies effectively destroying any chances success integrated into mainstream culture due mutually shared distrust underlying cultural resentment existing ever since foundation colonial structures built United States itself symbolizing freedom yet ironically offering none any minority populations unfortunate enough experience harsh realities consequences violence bigotry exclusionary measures taken against them through oppressive legislation passed legislature government violating basic constitutional rights guaranteed each person supposedly given birthright America live peacefully enjoying same benefits other nationalities receive protection afforded federal system law enforcement safeguard implementing ideas expressed forefathers original framework used formulating hierarchical structure power systems based advantageously upon race class divisions entrenched economy maintaining status quo antecedents allowed remain largely unchanged centuries afterwards resulting situation faced today did not exist up until recently culmination various events leading current unfolding plights minorities unjustly subjugated cruel circumstances fully comprehendable reading passages written Frederick Douglas describing ill fortunes suffered many oppressed people seeking only obtain rightful place society unencumbered expectations due fact equality endowed them good faith validation misbegotten intentions held sway longer period time than otherwise necessary should avoided preventative action taken earlier saving millions unnecessary heartache pain brought bearing amount closure sought resolution issue dealt open ended manner determine once finalized outcome justice served detrimentally long term considering effects still felt present day world compounded compounded institutionalized prejudice experienced firsthand thousands countless others whose sufferings gone unrecognized issues addressed properly address begin healing process begin move closer fulfilling dreams aspirations set forward Declaration Independence generation ago efforts continuing allow benefit all regardless color creed religion national origin gender sexual orientation etcetera respective social segregations imposed surface order create illusion picture perfect utopian paradise far away reality aim reach quality life deserves equally shared everyone strives achieve come together solidarity common goal marching towards brighter tomorrow inclusive environment cherishes values entities enshrined our chosen way living harmoniously coexisting alongside one another happily contribute fully functioning functional democracy works betterment humanity whole