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Immigration Wars - Essay Example

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Gaurav Sandhu Professor Lace May 19, 2011 English 101 Rhetorical Analysis Illegal immigration in America can be a heated and contentious topic in today’s political environment. Eduardo Proctor presents a rhetorical argument contesting economic claims levied against the illegal immigrants’ impact on California’s high school dropout workers…
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Download file to see previous pages However, the under utilization of pathos can be a highly effective tool in delivery of an argument when seeking to avoid an overly emotive response in politically charged subject matter. It is well known in the written rhetorical argument the writer is wise to embrace the concepts of logos, ethos, and pathos. The more difficult the subject matter, the more critical it is to master these rhetorical elements. Eduardo Proctor tackled a difficult topic in an aspect of illegal immigration. In Proctor’s lack of pathos, he successfully demonstrates the effectiveness of coupling logos and ethos as standalone tools of the rhetorical argument. Eduardo Proctor’s primary argumentative focus in the “Cost of Illegal Immigration May Be Less Than Meets the Eye” was logos. Proctor not only established credibility with his apt usage of statistics, he used them to maintain his credibility throughout the article. The best application of logos is found be in the statistical comparison of wage loss percentages between that of California and Ohio during the years of illegal immigration surges. He clearly identified that while illegal immigration critics cited wage declines in California, Proctor competently demonstrated Ohio, which has little to no illegal immigration saw nearly three times the low-income wage loss in the same period. By doing this early in the write, Proctor effectively attracted attention by using factual data that many may not have been aware. This effective use of logos literally forced the reader to continue hearing his argument. While starting the argument with statistics, Proctor was hardly done with logos. He continually reinforced credibility by repeatedly referring to the dates and time line in question. Why was this effective? This hit the mark for Proctor because he was referring to a period of spanning some 25 years. An important aspect of this article is the fact that the period in question is not a snapshot. This was originally introduced in the second sentence of the article because Proctor identified this as the key element of his argument. Proctor effectively applied the statistical date reference by referring to it no less than six times. He further built his credibility with this statistic by subtly referring to it in varying manners. By stating it as “quarter decade” and “since the 1980’s” allowed the reader to grasp the scope of time without losing interest through redundancy. Proctor was also effective in his use of quotes to build credibility. He quoted well-identified, credible sources. To establish his sources, he listed them by name, profession as it pertained to his argument, and organization. Proctor utilized appropriate quotes to support his argument without belaboring the quotes with inappropriate or off topic information. The quotes were precise, direct, and factually based. To achieve success in this, Proctor identified the individuals he cited, as “economists” to establish they were on the same level of those from which he was dissenting. In quoting one of the economists he cited, "’Illegal immigration had a little bit of a role reinforcing adverse trends for the least advantaged, he said, but there are much stronger forces operating over the last 25 years.’" This was an ideal quote because it both builds credibility and solidifies Proctor’s use of statistics. The element of logos has been highly effective in this article. However, Proctor did not ...Download file to see next pagesRead More
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