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Patrick Henry's Speech In March 1775 (Essay Sample)


Type of work: response paper Task: discuss\"PATRICK HENRY’S SPEECH IN MARCH 1775\"


Patrick Henry’s speech in March 1775
The tensions between England and her colonial subjects were rapidly escalating. Henry, a young lawyer, spoke to his fellow Virginians of his opinions regarding the colony’s course of action. Henry Patrick is best known for the speech that he made in the House of Burgesses on March 23, 1775, Give me Liberty or Give Me Death. The Burgesses house was faced with a problem of deciding on whether to deploy their military against the encroaching force of the British military. The difficulty of arriving in a conclusive decision necessitated a meeting of lawyers and government officials where Henry Patrick was one of them. Henry spoke in favor of the military action.
Henry wanted his fellow Virginians to rise up and organize the strongest militia in the spirit of patriotism, “no man thinks than I do of patriotism”. Patriotism meant that citizens ought to adopt love and devotion for the country and culturally attach themselves to the well-being of the nation. The militia would enable them take a firm stand against the threats of British tyranny. The British were fast overpowering Virginians’ God-given freedoms and liberties as human beings. Actions by the British were going beyond the limit to the extent of causing fear of the impeding danger among the Virginians. The only option available for dealing with the British was organizing a military and deploying it to affected areas to combat possible attacks. According to Henry, there was not time for ceremony and the question before the house was one of the awful moment to their country. Henry further considered it nothing less than a question of freedom or slavery; the proportion of the magnitude for that debate had to be the speech of freedom.
Rhetoric was widely used by Henry by Henry in justifying his desires. He posed several questions to his listeners, which enabled them to think critically about the situation in which the country was at that moment. For example, Henry asked his listeners, “Doe this belongs to that to the part of wise men who are engaged in great and arduous struggle for salvation?” Henry was referring to that group of men who indulge in illusions of hope, particularly those who concentrate on listening to the song of dialogue until they are subjected to extreme misery. Another rhetorical question posed by Henry was, “Are we like those people who have eyes and ears, but fail to see and hear the things that concern their temporal salvation?” Here, Henry was trying to persuade the president and the present officials that they cannot ignore that nothing is happening. “And what do we have to oppose to them? Shall we again try argument?” Henry reminded listeners that they had tried argument for the last ten years and it had failed. Hence, there was not need to give it chance again.
Henry tried to engage his listeners as a way of further justifying his opinion. He told them, “Ask yourselves how the gracious reception of our petition accord with these war-like preparations that cover our water bodies and darken our precious land.” Henry confirmed to them that preparations for petition were similar to war itself, and they had to respond the same way. Henry won most of the minds when he asked them if they had shown themselves so unwilling to be reconciled that force had to be implemented to win back their love. “Let us not deceive ourselves, sir.” He added. According to Henry, war and subjugation were the last arguments to which the kings resorted.
Henry clearly elaborated the misery to which the Virginians were subject to if they did not take action at that time. According to him, losing their freedom by Virginians would subject them to slavery. Slavery was the worst thing a country would face during Henry’s time. If a city was captured and defeated in war, all the remnants were driven like animals to the captors’ land. While there, captors were subjected to a lot of misery through hard work without pay and severe punishments. Henry actively wanted to prevent this from occurring by stressing on having the freedom debate. Henry viewed freedom of Virginians as their sole responsibility that they held to God and their country. This was meant to remind the leaders that the freedom of their country was on their hands, and they had an obligation to do anything to protect their people from slavery.
During the time of the speech, some Virginians were still opposing the option of forming a military to combat the advancing British military. Henry’s main desire was to convince them to the extent each one of them saw sense in his opinions. His primary desire was to inspire and motivate the Virginians to feel the pain of lack of justice. The thought of losing his freedom and be made a slave to other men made him mad with rage. Henry begged his audience to open their eyes and see the adverse events that surrounded them. He said, “Do not suffer yourselves to be betrayed with a kiss.” The objective of Henry in choosing his words might have been that of angering and moving his audience to the extent that they open their minds to the reality that was facing them.
Henry reiterated the fact that they had tried everything else in their power except calling the army to fight in order to keep the liberty of their countr...
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