RWS PROJECT #1.docx - Should Torture Be Legal The question...

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Should Torture Be Legal? The question of whether or not human torture should be legal in America regarding certain circumstances, such as terrorist activity, is a highly controversial topic that many people have yet to come to a conclusion on. Although some believe that it should be allowed, the act of torture is prohibited under both the U.S. and international law. Along with it being illegal, the U.S, and a majority of other countries have signed the ‘Convention against Torture’ treaty which they are all obligated to comply to. Alisa Solomon’s article, “The Case Against Torture” argues against the use of torture by stating that it is an inhumane act which has no evidence to prove it is effective. Michael Levin’s article, “The Case For Torture” tries to debunk this by arguing that torture is the only solution if society wants to stop the continuing trend of innocent people getting killed. I agree with Solomon that the use of torture is a barbarous act that goes against the U.S. constitution, has no proven effectiveness and exacerbates the issues in society rather than solving them, so therefore, it should continue to be an illegal act. The following paper will be analyzing and evaluating the two argumentative articles mentioned above, which each take a different standing on the topic of torture. I will discuss the rhetorical situation of each article, including the audience, purpose, tone and context of each argument. I will also discuss the different rhetorical strategies used in each article and how those contribute to the effectiveness of each authors argument. I hope to persuade the reader on why Solomon’s article created a more convincing argument by her use of logic and reasoning. Using the analysis of the two texts to support my opinion, this paper will then go into my personal position on the topic of torture. In the text “The Case For Torture”, Levin addresses the controversy of torture in the United States by making an argument in favor of the use of it. He argues that torture is a necessary action in order to protect the lives of our citizens and defend ourselves. The purpose of Levin’s piece is to try and persuade the audience that the use of torture should be justified in necessary situations when it is “morally mandatory” ( Levin). He believes that if the lives of our people are in danger, then the use of torture should be able to override laws and our constitution. Levin states, “ Torture is unconstitutional? Probably. But millions of lives surely outweigh constitutionality” ( Levin). In the article, Levin is writing to appeal to an audience which would most likely consist of a younger, educated American demographic since he is writing on an
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educational platform for an Ivy League University. Throughout his argument, Levin uses logos and pathos to add substance and persuasive abilities to his argument. Levin uses the logos
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Christopher Reinemann
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