Within the first few chapters of our textbook, I noticed a common theme discussed regarding the fact that rhetoric can be used for both good and evil. Within today’s society, specifically in America, I connect the idea of rhetoric with negative connotations tied to today’s world of advertisement. Advertising is all about the deliberate use of language to result in a certain outcome. Although many advertisements today use images that spark emotions of lust, want, and need, many advertisements also use language in a way that sparks similar emotions. Many companies create ads using strategic language in a way that will entice potential buyers and it can be argued that using rhetoric in this way can be considered more of an evil approach than a good one. Most advertisements are using rhetoric in a way that aim to persuade the viewer or reader and make them believe they need or want the product being advertised.
The idea of ethics in rhetoric can come into play while talking about advertisements in America today. Throughout their strategic use of rhetoric in their ads, many companies can avoid mentioning the negative side effects of their drug, or the unexpected costs to come after buying their brand of car. These purposeful exclusions of information can back up the idea of rhetoric used for “evil” instead of good. Especially in the twenty first century, the world of advertising has seemingly escalated into what can be argued as being an unethical industry. The industry casts a negative light on rhetoric because of how it uses it to manipulate the public.