- (in writing or speech) the undue use of exaggeration or display; bombast.
- the art or science of all specialized literary uses of language in prose or verse, including the figures of speech.
- the study of the effective use of language.
- the ability to use language effectively.
- the art of prose in general as opposed to verse.
I’ve been told I should tone down my rhetoric. The intended use of the word was not specified, so I figured I’d address them all.
- Undue. Exaggeration. Bombast (speech too pretentious/pompous for an occasion). What about animal rights activism is undue? What about drawing attention to the reality of food production is exaggerated? How am I pretentious for wanting to scream at the top of my lungs that we are no better than the animals we are exploiting for our enjoyment?
- Oh, so you want me to be less intelligent when I speak? No thanks.
- Again, where’s the problem?
- You don’t want me to be effective in my speech?
- I use my words and actions to convey what I need to. Typically this is trait is desirable.
So, why would anyone want me to tone my rhetoric down? To tone down myself, my actions, my words; is to be silent. Given that I already see so much that makes me want to scream but instead I lower my head, avert my eyes, and try not to think about it every second of every day… to do less than I do is to be silent. Is to betray myself. To do any less is to be complacent; which I am not. In a world where action is needed for anything to ever change, to do nothing is to consent. Which I do not.
My rhetoric should not be cause of concern for anyone. What my discourse and actions are about is what you should be offended by.
I do what I do because it is important to me. I do what I do because it is important. I do what I do because I care an awful lot.