Gay marriage has always been a subject of great controversy. Andrew Sullivan addresses this issue in his persuasive essay entitled “Let Gays Marry.” Sullivan’s essay appeared in Newsweek in June of 1996. Through his problem/solution structure of this essay, Sullivan uses rhetorical appeals to try and persuade the audience to accept gay marriage as a natural part of life.
Sullivan, an editor of The New Republic, also wrote Virtually Normal: An Argument about Homosexuality (26). Andrew Sullivan, who is openly gay himself, is a devout Catholic who has spent his life researching subjects involving the gay community. His articles are simply ways for him to show his feelings to the general public. His audience for “Let Gays Marry” is the general public, but could be more specifically written for gays who are too scared to stand up for the rights for gays to marry. He may have written this essay to inform the public how gays feel about the issue of marriage, but also to encourage gays to stand up for their rights as Americans.
“Let Gays Marry” is structured in a problem/solution format. Sullivan takes the issue of gays not being able to legally marry and offers a solution to the people of America. He addresses the issue that gays are not treated the same as other Americans in the issue of marriage and proposes that same-sex marriages become legal in order to solve this problem (26). Sullivan also knows that Americans believe that having same sex marriages would be against religious values (26). He then explains that gays don’t want to change anyone else’s beliefs, but simply want to live happily like other married couples in the United States (26). The last issue addres...
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...rica changed (26). Marriage has come a long way within the last century and should continue to modernize along with the people of America.
Andrew Sullivan uses many strategies to try to fully inform his audience of the rights of the gay community. Sullivan uses rhetorical appeals to persuade his audience to see his view of same-sex marriages. Sullivan successfully shows his side of the argument and confronts faults that others may see with his views. Using his problem/solution format, Sullivan resolves the problems that many Americans assume would accompany the legalization of same-sex marriages. Through his essay, Sullivan hopes to show to the general public that legalizing gay marriage is a natural step that must be taken in order to support the growth of America.
Sullivan, Andrew. “Let Gays Marry.” Newsweek 3 June 1996: 26.
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