Speech Name ______________________
Purpose Statement: My audience will think twice about name calling, and know to think about what they are saying before they speak.
II. The different perceptions about a turkey.
A. The turkey is an ugly bird
B. Benjamin Franklin thought highly of turkeys.
C. The turkey has a reputation for being a stupid animal.
D. Hunters respect the turkey.
III. Conclusion- the discrepancies regarding the turkey.
A. The wild turkey.
B. The domestic turkey.
1. Do you think it is a good introduction? (circle one) Yes No
Why or why not?
2. List the main points of the body.
3. Do you think it is a good conclusion? (circle one) Yes No
Why or why not?
4. Is the speech well organized and easy to understand? (circle one) Yes No
Why or why not?
5. What grade would you give this speech? _____________ Why?
Have you ever heard the expression, “Choose your words wisely”? In this speech, I’d like to encourage you to do just that by demonstrating the different meanings one very simple word has. By listening to this speech, I hope you can begin to understand the familiar adage, there are always two different ways to say something.” As well as why it is important to follow the advice, “if you don’t have anything nice to say, don’t say anything at all.” Now, you may be wondering what one word in our English language can accomplish all that? The word is, “Turkey.”
Has anyone ever called you a “Turkey”? Well, a careful examination of this word indicates that you might have a right to be confused. Most people think of a turkey as a large bird that we eat on holidays, especially Christmas and Thanksgiving. But the turkey is more complex than that.
On one hand the turkey is seen as an ugly bird. Its waddled neck has given the name “turkey neck” to people whose necks are wrinkled. And while condors and vultures are not exactly beautiful, why is the turkey the one blessed with that red worm looking thing that hangs next to it’s beak? I think it would be fair to say that no one wants to look like a turkey.
On the other hand, one of America’s most brilliant inventors and diplomats thought highly of the turkey. Benjamin Franklin, in a letter written in 1784, said, “I wish the bald eagle had not been chosen as the representative of our country. He is a bird of bad moral Character, and like those among men who live by sharpening and robbing, he is generally poor and often lousy. The turkey is a much more respectable bird and with (al) a true original native of America.”
However, the turkey has a reputation for stupidity. In a thunderstorm, they say turkeys will sometimes smother themselves in a panic by smashing themselves in a corner. Outside they have been known to drown themselves by looking up in a rainstorm with their mouths open. Admittedly, their nature of panic and suicide do not make them sound intelligent.
Hunters will tell you a different story. They say the turkey is a wily fowl in the woods. Difficult to call, tough to stalk, and impossible to fool, the wild turkey is anything but dumb. Hunters respect the turkey.
How can we reconcile the discrepancy regarding the turkey? Franklin and the hunters are thinking of a wild turkey, while the dumb turkey is the domestic turkey raised on a farm. So next time calls you a turkey, you should ask if they mean the wild variety or the tame one. That way you will know if you have received an insult or a complement. Yet, even more importantly, be sure you think about your own words and what they mean before you use them.