The Power of Persuasion

In class tonight, we were asked to give a few examples of good persuasive writing.  Here are a few that I found interesting:

Where Anonymity Breeds Contempt
By Julie Zhuo – The New York Times

This is an op-ed piece from The New York Times.  Even though I agreed with the writer before even clicking the link, I thought this was a great persuasive post.  It hit on all the key elements of a good persuasive post and was extremely well-written.  Zhuo included links to psychological research as back-up and told a heartwrenching story about how trolls have infiltrated memorial sites.  Her call to action was also clear and concise.  She says, “Let’s start to rein in bad behavior by promoting accountability,”  and follows that up with examples of how to do it.

What gays and straights both seek to affirm in the military: their masculinity
By Patrick B. Pexton – The Washington Post

Our military’s Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell policy is controversial to say the least.  Also controversial?  The new Pentagon report that repealing the policy will not hurt our military.  Pexton agrees and explains why in this op-ed piece from The Washington Post.  This piece has most of the key elements of a good persuasive post, however, the call to action is fairly weak.  He mostly urges people to let the controversy die and accept the fact that openly gay men and women will serve in the military at some point in the future.


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