Ethos Within The Ballot Or The Bullet

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Ethos within “The Ballot or the Bullet” In 1964, Malcolm X gave a speech entitled “The Ballot or the Bullet” which described how African Americans were being used and should fight for their civil rights. Malcolm X stresses on the importance of understand how to vote for the proper candidate. The reason he stresses this in his speech so much is because he believes that this is the solution to ending the discrimination against African Americans. He addressed in this speech that most of the African American community don’t understand on how to vote properly and because of this they are getting miss treated from the very people they are voting to put in office. The reason Malcolm X says “the ballot or the bullet” is that its either going to come down to the “ballot” which is allowing them to vote, or the “bullet” which is going to result in violence in order to get the rights the deserve. Malcolm X chose to take action at the correct time since African Americans were left without their freedom, either the ballot or the bullet should be next. Blacks will either get their rights or they will rebel against government. Within Malcolm X’s “Ballot or the Bullet” he explains that there are issues within black and white community’s political, social, and economical standing that must be changed. To do this he uses ethos to build his credibility, authority, and to persuade the audience that now is the time to take action. Ethos can be used to build ones credibility and to make yourself seem to the audience that you are their because you know the information or have a personal connection to what you are talking about. Malcolm X uses ethos in both of these ways. By saying “The economic philosophy of Black Nationalism only means that we should own and operate and control the economy of our community” (X 341) he builds his credibility by showing that he knows his information. Not

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