Michael Levin: the Case for Torture

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“Analyzing the Text” Michael Levin’s, “The Case for Torture” argues that there are various reasons for allowing torture in the United States of America. Michael Levin believes that torture is justified when victims are at risk, claiming that torture is not merely permissible but morally mandatory. The author makes hypothetical scenarios in which people’s lives are in danger and preventing future events from occurring. Then stating his position on torture when people’s lives are placed in danger. Levin’s target audience is Americans because his use of American symbolism such as “July 4,” and “unconstitutional.” In addition, the United States is not the only victim of terrorist attacks. Many countries around the world also fall prey to terrorism. According to Levin, begins his essay with a brief description of how he believes that societies view the subject of torture as negative thing. He justifies his reasoning on torture by allowing it in order to save innocent lives. Levin’s second claim is that the judicial system is a slow process when time is a factor and the only way to speed it up is by torture. In a hypothetical scenario where a bomb is hidden in a dense population that will explode at noon unless the demands are met, torture may stop the crisis from occurring. Given that the judicial system is a slow process, torture is the only quick alternative. In the fifth paragraph Levin uses a very effective appeal to logos to trap the reader, because it follows a very specific format of: if you believe that then you must also believe this. When Levin gives a hypothetical scenario it starts it extreme so, the reader can easily agree with his argument. Because the scenario is extreme it can be seen as black and white situation. Afterwards, he adds to his argument a more realist scenario a bomb in a plane. He uses extreme scenarios to justify torture to save
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