I chose to read the speech made by Elie Weisel about indifference around the world today and in the past. This speech was very touching in my opinion and I believed showed examples of Bias, Rhetorical devices, and argumentation. Elie Weisel was able to connect with his listener by sharing his heartbreaking and emotional experience. He then talked about other instances where injustice occurred around the world. Elie Weisel made good arguments as to why we we do and why we cannot ignore these injustices. We must stand up and fight against those who oppress. It is so easy to ignore something happening right next to you when it does not affect you. Live and let live, don’t ask don’t tell, what I cant see cant hurt me…All of these things we say to ourselves to feel better about not standing up against evil. Feel better about being selfish human beings. In this essay I will discuss the different Arguments made, how these arguments and counter arguments were addressed and how effective Elie Weisel’s speech was.
Elie Weisel begins his speech using a rhetorical device and shows his bias by pulling at the heart strings of the listener. He does this by sharing his story in the third person. The story of a young boy who was just released from a Nazi concentration camp by the rage full and disgusted American Soldiers. He uses Alliteration through the beginning of this speech speaking about the rage that he and the American soldiers shared for the Nazis. This also showed the listener his bias, how could you know be bias when you experience such evil first hand. In addition, he uses alliteration by continuing to use the word gratitude throughout the beginning of the speech again.
The most common thing I saw throughout his speech was Parallelism which are “sentences structured in a similar way to make it easier for the reader to understand” (appendix D, Com220) An example of this in Elie Weisel’s speech is when he says “They no longer felt pain, hunger, thirst. They feared nothing. They felt nothing. They were dead and did not know it” (pg 2)?? In addition Elie Weisel also used fallacies in his speech by using scare tactics. He expressed how the country is going to be severely judged for ALL the mistakes it made in the past. He emphasized this in hopes that it would scare those in politics to realize they cannot make those mistakes again or the new generation would retaliate. We can no longer ignore the injustices happening around the world because it cant be covered up as well.
Elie weisel also made good arguments for why we cannot ignore the constant injustice occurring around the world now. He states that indifference only gives more power to the aggressor and takes away all hope from the victims. Elie Weisel argues that when we are indifference we are not only hurting those we are ignoring but ourselves because we are not protecting our fellow man. He makes a good argument for this topic by using his personal experience again. He shares how those in Auschwitz believed that their camp was hidden because there was no way those around the world would allow such horrific events to take place.
If they had known that the united states was in business with some Nazi companies it would have taken all hope from those waiting for the day when all the horror would end. They would lose the drive to fight for their lives. Elie Weisel speaks about Roosevelt and used the writing to called straw man. Although he says that Roosevelt was a great President he speaks about how he doesn’t understand why he would ever send the refugees back to Nazi german only to be murdered. Elie weisel begins to bring up counter arguments in a sense when he talks about the United States getting involved in more current situations where people around the world needed help. He speaks about NATO and the united states making a joint decision to help the refugees in Kosovo.
I believe that Elie Weisel arguments and writing techniques were very effective. His speech was touching and easy to understand. He made sure he related to the emotions of the listener, made them think by using rhetorical questions when he wanted to get an obvious point across, and sharing current examples.