Jan 25, 2018 in Research

Freedom of Speech

Everything in the universe is based on arguments. This statement reinforces the wise men that altered that, one man’s poison is another man’s meat. Freedom of speech means different things to different persons. This is all based on different types of argument.  There exist various arguments including evaluation, casual and definition argument among others. The speaker combines the three distinct appeals to come up with a speech of his choice. These appeals are pathos, logos and ethos. An argument based on ethos is concentrated on the speaker’s character, the one based on pathos is characterized by speaker’s emotions, and the one based on logos is based on reason (Lunsford et al., 2007). There is freedom to use one of the three appeals, two of them or all of them at the same time. This is why every speaker argues differently depending on the appeal in question.

There are various reasons of raising an argument. Authors and speakers raise arguments to persuade, educate, criticize, inform or convince the audience.  This means that, the audience plays a great role in the speech. The speech can be approached in in-directional means depending on the flexibility of the audience. The speech has to be understood by the audience for it to bear expected fruits. Effective arguments do not waiver after every adjustment. This means that the audience is usually absorbed by the argument being presented, and are annoyed by disruptions. There is a bond between the speaker and the audience. Interfering with this bond brings miscommunication in the long run.

In his article, ‘Protecting Freedom of Expression on The Campus’, Derek Bok explains the controversy in freedom of expression in United states. He claims that, some acts were unwise and incentive, though they are legally permitted by the law. Freedom of expression carries both wrong and right actions. The dilemma lies on the criteria to select the right and the wrong actions. One man’s freedom fighter is another person’s terrorists. This confirm the saying that, ‘one man’s meat is another man’s poison’.  At Harvard, hanging the confederate flag was a controversial issue. Bok claims that the act was lawful, although he does not support it. He argues that all citizens are equal and have equal freedom of expression (Lunsford et al., 2007).

In her article, ‘a curse and a blessing’, Melina Ateya discusses the same issue with Derek Bok. Both authors agree on the first amendment. Some students at Harvard hang the confederate flag. The other students opposed the action claiming that it was wrong to display a Swastika. Ateya and Bok conclude that, it is wise to ignore some acts rather than denying some people freedom of expression which is a right to all human beings. I agree on these articles that every person has freedom to express his or her opinions provided no one else is being hurt by the expression. Displaying confederate flag and Swastika is not acceptable in the society. Every person has freedom to express his opinion regarding the matter (Lunsford et al., 2007).

Arguments are subject to misunderstanding.  Speakers and authors are potentially exposed to conflict. Every speaker has freedom to express his opinion to the audience. However, the audience does not have to agree with him. This invites disagreements and conflict. The speaker should be equipped with enough knowledge of the question at hand. This will help him answer all the questions raised by the audience. As a result, the audience will build trust with the speaker and listen more attentively. It is impossible for all human beings to agree on one thing. In fact, the world would be too boring if we all have the same opinions and views. Therefore, disagreements are acceptable in every speech (Lunsford et al., 2004). The author or speaker should take conflicts positively and extract knowledge from them. No one knows everything. It is through disagreements that people learn what they do not know. Similarly, conflicts bring reforms in every aspect of life. Artist, speakers and authors should never look for ways to avoid conflicts. Instead, they should look for effective methods of solving them (Zinsser & William, 1976).

Arguments based on ethos draw their attention from the speaker’s character. The speaker can argue a subject based on his authority, character or reputation. The audience has an open chance to agree or disagree with the argument. Arguments based on pathos appeal to the emotions of the audience. The speaker’s main objective is to persuade the audience to agree with him. He uses persuasive language and key words to drive points home. Using logos means using reason in the argument to persuade or convince the audience. This requires in deductive or deductive arguments when proving a point.

Speakers have freedom to base their arguments on value. Arguments based on values concentrates more on pathos than other instinct appeals.  The only deference is that, working on values deals with a specific group of people. The group should be aware of the values to be discussed (Morse & Ogden, 2006). This makes it easy for the speaker to convince and persuade the audience. For instance, if the speaker argues that, certain disobedience was brought about by Americans value, the audience should be aware of the values which made Americans to disobey.

Moral and ethical guidelines help speakers to come up with an effective speech which will not harm the society. They have to perform rhetorical analysis to come up with what is morally and ethically acceptable for that particular audience. Different audiences have different cultures, norms and perspectives. Therefore, the speaker must have a clear understanding of the audience before delivering the speech. This is why it is vital for the argument to come from the speaker’s heart. Arguments from the speaker’s heart are easy to defend and to convince the audience. A logical argument creates a bridge which unites the speaker and the audience. It ultimately increases trust and understanding between the two parties (Horn & Lorri, 2006).

In conclusion, speakers have an opportunity to present a speech of their choice. This contributes to free speeches given by politicians, religious leaders, humanitarians and everyone else who can present a speech. The speeches are different even when the topics of discussions are similar. This difference originates from the line of the arguments. Some arguments come from the speaker’s heart while others are based on reason, facts character or value. This basically means that, arguments can concentrate on pathos, ethos or logos. The appeal selected determines the direction of the speech. It is the speaker’s choice to either combine these appeals or use one of them. Everything is an argument and can be accepted or be rejected by the audience. The speaker has to analyze the audience properly to communicate effectively. Moral and ethical considerations have to be considered.


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