Topic

The text “No Death Penalty, No Easter Bunny” by Colin Cohen is a satirical essay which explores the topics of death penalty and religion.

A satirical essay is a relatively short text in which the writer’s main goal is to criticize or make fun of a situation, a person, an event, or an idea. In this case, Colin Cohen wants to criticize those who promote and support the death penalty in the US. As with many satirical essays, the writer explores this topic by assuming a parody of the position of the people argues ag…

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Death penalty and religion

The two topics are announced both in the title and in the beginning of the essay: “Arguments against the death penalty are usually based upon the erroneous theory that it is morally wrong to kill a human being…” (p. 68, ll. 1-2). Throughout the first part of the speech, the two topics of the death penalty and religion are explored together. The writer’s main argument is that God endorses the death penalty and that Christianity is founded on the death penalty.

Cohen gives multiple e…

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The media and political interests

Colin Cohen also explores issues like the media's influence on American citizens. The writer goes to absurd lengths to describe how crucifixions could be part of a reality show, to criticize media influence in modern society: “We can even create reality shows based on crucifixions. For example, Who Wants to Crucify a Murderer? – in which contestants vie for the opportunity to nail the first spike into the villain's flesh.” (p. 71, ll. 23-25). In other words, the writer shows ho…

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Argumentation

Colin Cohen relies on direct argumentation to convey his (supposed) views on the death penalty. This means that he expresses his (supposed) views openly, typically by using the first person: “I propose that the laws be changed so as to enforce the death penalty on any person convicted of a violent crime…” (p. 70, ll. 39-41); “I believe that if it were good enough for the Son of Man, it's humane enough.” (p. 71, ll. 17-18)

Direct argumentation is also noticeable in the structure of the essay as the writer uses linking phrases to introduce arguments which he then explains and exemplifies: Firstly, the death penalty acts as a deterrent against crime.” (p. 70, l. 2); “Secondly, the death penal…

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