Murrow vs V

By: Manuela Vallejo


V and Murrow have both announced their points of view through a speech. They want to inform the public that something is immoral and wrong with the way that they are living their lives. V states his purpose when he says, “There is something terribly wrong with this country, isn’t there? Cruelty and injustice, intolerance and oppression”. V’s purpose is to expose the government of their sinful and malevolent ways. He wishes for people to revolt against the government to create a change. On the other hand, Murrow states, “This instrument is good for nothing but to entertain, amuse and insulate, then the tube is flickering now and we will soon see that the whole struggle is lost”. Murrow’s purpose is to inform the public of the ignorance that they are building because of television’s media. He does not ask for a revolt but rather realization of something that is harming our society as a whole.

History differences

V refers to how things used to be in the past. He wants to go back to when the people were safe and not scared to speak their minds. After a dictator-like leader took rule, fear was the only thing that remained amongst the people. V announced to the public, “Once you had the freedom to object, to think and speak as you saw fit, you now have sensors and systems of surveillance coercing your conformity and soliciting your submission.” The people were constantly being observed and heard and there were men that made sure no one was in the streets after curfew. Anyone who broke the rules was punished, if not killed.

Murrow on the other hand wants to create memorable history. He does not want history to be about how the people of this nation spent their time escaping from reality for hours staring at “wires and lights in a box.” He believes that we have become ignorant due to the lack of information that we obtain from television. In his speech, he stated that, “Our history will be what we make of it. If we go on as we are, then history will take its revenge, and retribution will not limp in catching up with us.” Murrow knows that if the people do not do something now, then eventually they will all be punished in some way. Ignorance is not bliss when it involves matters about one’s own country.

Plan Differences

V revolts against the government and wants the people to do so as well. His form of revolution is physical. He wishes to create hatred against the government and in doing so; he gains hatred from the government. V blew up a building and will blow up another one on November 5. He concludes in his speech, “But if you see what I see, if you feel as I feel, and if you would seek as I seek, then I ask you to stand beside me one year from tonight, outside of the gates of Parliament, and together we shall give them a fifth of November that shall never, ever be forgot”. V wants to blow up the Parliament building because he wants to symbolize freedom and retaliation. He is the voice to all those living in fear.

Murrow’s plans are opposite to V’s. Although he does want change, he asks for it in a different way. It is as if he just wants the people to be knowledgeable of the harm that is being done to them. There is less anger in his speech compared to V’s. He is raising awareness, while V is creating a revolution. Murrow states in his speech, “ Unless we get up off our fat surpluses and recognize that television in the main is being used to distract, delude, amuse and insulate us, then television and those who finance it, those who look at it and those who work at it, may see a totally different picture too late”. Murrow is trying to explain that if no one recognizes the harm that is being done to him or her by insulating them and making them ignorant about the world, then they eventually be too late. Murrow wants support and for people to do something themselves to help this matter.

Similar Tones

Both V and Murrow do not talk in a way that seems forceful. They are not commanding the people to stand up for what is right; rather they give them a choice. Either they speak up or they do not and have to live with the consequences of staying quite. Murrow proves that he is not forceful when he concludes with “Goodnight, and good luck”. It is giving the public the liberty of deciding on whether they wish to do the right thing. V proves to not be forceful when he states in his speech, “If you’ve seen nothing, if the crimes of this government remain unknown to you then I would suggest you allow the fifth of November to pass unmarked”. There is no pressure for those who are fearful to agree with him because V does threaten anyone who does not follow him.

Hidden Message from Authors

Behind these speeches is a message. The authors are warning us today to help save our future selves. V's warning is about giving the government too much power. The evil in men come out when they are given unlimited power. Murrow's warning is about the power of television. It can either inform us and bring us closer to the world's problems, or it can make us ignorant and oblivious to the problems that the world has.


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