The Great Person-Hole Cover Debate, By Lindsy Van Gelder

Good Essays
Persuasiveness is a vital skill all authors and essayists must master in order to effectively communicate their ideas. “The Great Person-Hole Cover Debate: A Modest Proposal for Anyone Who Thinks the Word “He” Is Just Plain Easier…” (Person-Hole Cover Debate) written by Lindsy Van Gelder is a poor example of how to construct a persuasive essay. This essay can be deconstructed into three key areas which are used to judge an essays persuasiveness. Failure to achieve effectiveness in these areas deem a persuasive essay ineffective. These areas include persuasive essay fundamentals, literary devices, and features. “Person-Hole Cover Debate” fails its goal of persuading the audience to comprehend and eventually agree with the thesis of the essay.…show more content…
One of the key references she makes is in her title ‘ A Modest Proposal’. This allusion was a poor choice to use in this essay because Van Gelder is an anarchist. The author's reference to “A Modest Proposal” only leads her audience to believe she is joking, when in actuality her message is meant to be received seriously. Van Gelder also uses hyperbole to describe how difficult it is for people to use recent terminology. “People who choke on expressions like ‘spokesperson’” (Van Gelder) is the exaggeration she uses to describes her annoyance with the difficulty as to which people say uni-sex words. Her assumption that these newspeak words can be said easily is a misconception considering these words have been introduced relatively recently. This misinterpretation confirms the lengths Van Gelder will go to achieve persuasion, but her use of hyperbole can easily be criticized by active thinkers as they read her essay. Also, the author uses an allusion to reference the criticism that “Band-Aids” received for titling their product ‘flesh-coloured’. The product was labeled racist and soon after the name was changed. This difficulty as to which as products name is changed in comparison to the inner workings of an entire language is not comparable.Van Gelder has a tendency to downplay the significance of changing a language, but at the same time exaggerating real-world issues and…show more content…
Appealing to the readers emotions, beginning with a rational tone, and using reasoning to prove the thesis are all features that Van Gelder fails to use effectively. Van Gelder often strays far away from achieving any type of agreeance with regards to her thesis because of her condescending and disrespectful tone used throughout the essay. Her use of sarcasm distracts readers of the thesis which overall takes allows all means of persuasiveness to be overlooked. Also, many people don't take issue with the English language as it is today. Other tragedies that have occurred throughout recent years such as the Las Vegas shooting, Paris bombing, and mosque Shootings are more important to address these issue before any strides to change our language can be made. Secondly, using a calm and rational tone is vital to an essays persuasiveness. Van Gelder strays as far away from calm and rational as possible and uses strong, offensive diction to communicate her message. An example of the authors disrespectful diction is when she states “you’re jeopardizing the worthy cause of woman’s rights by focusing on ‘trivial’ side issues” (Van Gelder). These mocking tactics are only discouraging to people that hold different beliefs than the author. This lack of calmness and rationality is a major downfall in terms of the essays persuasiveness. Lastly, Van Gelder uses weak reasoning to persuade the readers of her
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