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Benjamin Franklin’s ideology, manipulation of language, and illustration assert that the

ability to reason enables individuals to justify their comportment.

“I consulted with my Master Tyron the taking of every fish as a kind of

unprovoked murder…………But I had formerly been a great lover of fish, and when it came

hot out of the frying pan it smelled admirably well.” In this extract Mr. Franklin expresses

the fact that he disapproves the consumption of cod, since the fish have not, nor are they

able to attack. However, in the quotation that follows, he seems uneasy since he is a fish

lover, hence, his temptation serves as a foreshadow of the proceeding events: his

consumption of fish and its aftermath’s which in this case are his justifications.

Mr. Franklin’s ability to reason enabled him to justify his incentive to eat fish. “I

recollected, that when the fish were opened, I saw smaller fish taken out of their stomachs:

Then taught I, if you eat one another, I don’t see why I mayn’t eat you.” In this portion of

his excerpt Mr. Franklin concluded there was no apparent reason to feel guilt upon his

ingestion of fish, given the fact that fish eat one another. Therefore, he reasoned, that his

consumption of fish was equally justified.

The principle of reasoning in order to justify one’s actions proves to be efficient if

properly applied. For example, I recently made a commitment to improve my ability to

remain calm, even when under a considerable amount of pressure. However, yesterday

when my brother decided to engage in one of his everlasting tantrums, I lost my patience

and proceeded to castigate him (in a non-violent manner of course) for his actions.

After much deliberation, I realized that my reaction was for my brother’s best

interest. Had I not reprehended his actions, he would have continued to disperse of his

anger in very violent manners. Therefore, my ability to reason allowed me to justify my

actions. The capability to remain calm under pressure is essential, however the ability to

recognize when certain boundaries have been crossed proves to be most efficient.

In his last sentence, “So convenient a thing is it to be a reasonable creature, since

it enables one to find or make a reason for everything one has mind to do.” Mr. Franklin

concludes that individuals endowed with the capacity to reason, are empowered to create

valuable justifications for all of their actions. Mr. Franklin’s assertions demonstrate to be

valid since he provides ample proof, which affirm the credibility of his assertions.


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