English Comp 012
September 12, 2014
Rhetorical Analysis Paper
Carol Anderson's "Ferguson isn't about black rage against cops. It's white rage against progress." was published to the Washington Post on August 29, 2014. In light of the protests and riots in Ferguson, MO after the murder of unarmed African American teenager Michael Brown at the hands of armed Caucasian police officer, Darren Wilson, Anderson provides a new point of view on the topic by employing visual tools, historical references, ethos, and pathos. These and more work together to culminate into a thought provoking, powerful article.
The first thing you see is a photo capturing the silhouettes of Ferguson police clad in riot gear, gas masks, and shields. The main problem in Ferguson is the extreme police brutality, illustrated no better than with that image at the front and center. A very dramatic photo, it is not one that we as American citizens would expect to see taken of our police forces on our soil.
This is not the norm, and we all know it. The article is prefaced with credibility establishment of Anderson, stating she's an associate professor of African American studies and history, and the author of Bourgeois Radicals: The NAACP and the Struggle for Colonial Liberation, 1941-1960. She begins by alluding to the awful treatment of the black citizens of Ferguson, with "white rage doesn't have to take to the streets and face rubber bullets to be heard" (Anderson) because "white rage carries an aura of respectability" (Anderson) that "black rage" (Anderson) does not. She is successfully applying her thesis, clearly stated in the title of the article, not only here, but throughout the entire piece.
This article is littered with a plethora of historical references from times of old and modern...