Martin Luther King Jr. Speech of “The Three Evils of Society” Analysis

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Our world is still evil: We are in a world where we are submerged in the evils. One wise man, a social activist delivered at the National Conference on New Politics August 31, 1967. He argues that we as a nation how to do better not just as a country but I’m a deeper layer as the people in our country. Dr. King starts his argument with a gracious amount of logic with great ideas and views. In his speech, Dr. King set out in front of us with an emotional and logically insight of the three evils of society. On May 10, 1967 Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. took a stance at the Hungry Club in front of blacks and whites located inside the Butler Street YMCA in Atlanta. Dr. King shed light onto the three evils of society and how they are a norm in America. But he will stand up for what is right amongst the African American community.

Racism was the first topic of discussion and how this is something we are currently enduring in 2018. Dr. King second evil viewed was poverty, yes poverty the unemployment rate was at an all-time high in which it causes crime to also rise at an alarming rate. Dr. Kings third evil viewed was war. The War has cause America to become emotionless and numb to our fellow Americans especially the African American brothers and sisters. Killing our own unprivileged citizens by placing our military demands above their most critical needs. This goes to show how the three evils of society all tie in together one way or another.

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Throughout his speech Dr. King uses many strong statements his logic and appeal to logos, as well builds his agreement and vision. He points out that even in the early 60’s when civil right act began, it has grown longer and longer across America. “Freedom is spreading in the wildest liberation.” There has been a statement that was said by Arnold Toynesbee he states, “you call your thousand material devices labor saving machinery, yet you are forever busy.” This is an example as to why there are so many laborious projects that president Trump has for us hints: building a wall to keep immigrants out yet its immigrants that will most likely be building the wall. Dr. King had a way to logically think of way to end poverty and it only makes since because if African Americans had access to the same resources and opportunities as other more fortunate poverty percentages will drop drastically.

“The way to end poverty is to end the exploitation of the poor, ensure them a fair share of government services and the nations resources.” We also fail in the aspect of what’s important and what’s not in society, we watch what is fed to us on the television and not what’s directly in front of our eyes. “We must devote at least as much to our children’s education and health of the poor as we do to the care of our automobiles and building of beautiful, impressive hotels.” “We are called to play the Good Samaritan on life’s road side, but that will only be an initial act.” This is a great example of what it means for all people are created equal. Meaning it all starts with us as people and ends with us. It starts with a small smile as 2 people make eye contact to helping to elderly across the street.

Along with the strong views to logos, Dr. King also makes appeals to pathos all throughout his speech. “Now it is hard to escape, the disillusionment and betrayal. Our hope have been blasted and our dreams have been shatter.” We as a nation have been promised a Great Nation and we have been let down on several accounts. Let’s take President Trumps slogan “Make American Great Again” he says this over and over with nothing to show for it but a lot of hate and discontent. He is doing nothing for our country but reminding use why we need people like Martin Luther King Jr. When Dr. King would spook his voice moved people and got things done. He was a leader he used a part of a popular slavery hymn “ain’t gonna let nobody turn us around.” And Dr. King stood behind that. He marched for something he believed and did not let nobody turn him around.

“Yes, the hour is dark, evil comes fourth in the guise of good” Guise is another word for appearance or manner. Let’s think about when Hillary and Trump went toe to toe during the election, we were provided with no choice but, “who’s the least of both evil?” Dr. King made a statement that makes you wonder if this man was a prophet. “Negro 100% of a citizen in Warfare but reduce him to 50% of citizen on American soil.” Till this very day African Americans endure this very same issue. Men that have fought in the war struggle to get decent care after they have served their country. “The people who sat in darkness have seen a great light.” In other word Stay Woke. The details and logic the build his appeal to logos and reaches out to the reader that Dr. King in fact had made several good points of views that this movement is worth moving.

Additionally, Dr. King showed us that America have mislead us as a nation because we entrusted in the government when in fact the have shown us nothing be “betrayal” “deception” “bad faith.” “Racism” this is one word no one want to admit to but is clearly surrounding us. Racism is taught not hereditary. “White backlash” is an actual or hypothetical negative response of whit people to racial progress. “Racial Injustice” is freely shown all over even on the television. You could have two men one white and one black commit the same crime and both with no criminal record, due to the color of their skin that will determine their destiny. We as a nation continue to uplift each other, improve socially, culturally, and morally. This is very important and Dr. King expresses this as a “Social Uplift.” The tone of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr speech is to motivate the reader and make a change in this word for all races.

Throughout Dr. King’s speech he begins with his appeal to logos with all his great views on civil rights and the three evils of society He fought for equal rights for the negro man with equal opportunities. Dr. King go furthermore into the wall that the negro man must endure. A few being betrayal, racial injustice, white backlash, and social uplifting. Then, Dr. King goes on to show his appeal to Ethos showing his readers that poverty is the first evil of society out of the three. He guides us down the path that African Americans and lower income individuals have it harder due to poverty exploitation and inability to national resources. This speech of the three evils of society have grabbed my attention because Dr. King was fully aware of our struggles we were enduring then and able to see the very same struggles that we are currently facing. Dr. King knew the three evils.

Work cited

  1. Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. “The Three Evils of Society.” SCRIBD. 31 Aug.1967 access date: 5 Dec 2018.

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Martin Luther King Jr. Speech of “The Three Evils of Society” Analysis. (2022, May 05). Retrieved from

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