Bryan Stevenson knew the perils of injustice and inequality just as well as his clients on death row. He grew up in a poor, racially segregated area in Delaware and his great-grandparents had been slaves. While he was a law student, he had interned working for clients on death row. He realized that some people were treated unfairly in the judicial system and created the Equal Justice Institute where he began to take on prisoners sentenced to death as clients since many death row prisoners had no legal representation of any kind. In Just Mercy, Bryan Stevenson focuses on some of these true stories of injustice, mainly the case of his client, Walter McMillian.
When you look out at the world today; it won’t take you long to point out all the tragic and horrific things that are occurring daily which include: terrorism, the current refugee situation, genocide, poverty, and mass murders among many others tragedies. Currently in the world today, people desperately need more love than hate, more compassion than judgment, more grace than harshness, and more justice than inequity. These qualities are important (love, compassion, grace) in order to making a difference in the world today, but I want to focus on justice and how it affects people with disabilities. The online English-Oxford Dictionary defines justice as, “a concern for justice, peace, and genuine respect for people” I do not agree with this definition entirely; I believe the word justice is more accurately defined as, “respect and compassion for all people no matter what situation they are in.”
Jail is a place no one ever wants to go. People go to jail for many reasons: robbery, murder, hate crimes, and there are people who are sitting in jail for a crime they did not commit. People have their different views on the justice system and how it works. People’s religious beliefs and personal beliefs in stereotypes play a major part in their convictions. In A Lesson before Dying Earnest Gaines reveals how different values and racism in a small community are seen through the characters Jefferson, Grant, and Tante Lou and their experiences and reactions.
There are many victims of unfortunate circumstances in the world today, yet some of these results could have been easily avoided. In the novel, Just Mercy, the author Bryan Stevenson addresses many cases in which children under the age of 18 are incarcerated within the adult criminal justice system. By treating children as adults in the criminal justice system their innocence and undeveloped person, become criminalized. These children become dehumanized and only viewed as full-fledged criminals and as a result society offers no chance sympathy towards them. Stevenson argues that children tried as adults have become damaged and traumatized by this system of injustice.
“There is a strength, a power even, in understanding brokenness, because embracing our brokenness creates a need and desire for mercy, and perhaps a corresponding need to show mercy (Stevenson 109) .” This bold statement is one of many as Bryan Stevenson sets the tone for his renowned award winning novel Just Mercy. As a young lawyer from Georgia, built the foundation for his company, SPDC (Southern Prisoners Defense Committee) to help convicts that are on death row or in need a second chance. Bryan Stevenson, a young lawyer from Georgia who fought for justice on the behalf of inmates on death row, showed tremendous intelligence in becoming a successful lawyer, demanding for not backing down in moments of refusal, and was an overall advocate
Anthony Hinton spoke to us about his time on death row, and the events leading up to arrest, conviction, and being exonerated. He was there to inform us on his experience and the injustice that can come with the death penalty. This eventually leads to him trying to persuade the audience to take action to get rid of the death penalty. As a strong believer of the death penalty, Hinton’s
In the novel A Lesson Before Dying, written by Ernest J. Gaines in 1993, Grant Higgins struggles with the idea of criminal justice in the south during the 1940s. During this time in Bayonne, LA African Americans did not receive the same justice as whites. In this quotation one can see the discrimination, “Twelve white men say a black man must die, and another white man sets the date and time without consulting one black person. Justice?” (Gaines 157).
Have you ever had an experience that altered or shifted your understanding of something? Just Mercy by Bryan Stevenson examines the experience of Bryan as he fights cases for people on Death Row, including those who have been wrongly imprisoned and/or have a mental illness. Through his interaction with Henry, Marsha, and Jim, Bryan’s level of understanding redemption and hopefulness was altered. Through his interaction with Henry, Bryan’s understanding of redemption and hopefulness was altered.
“Dead or in Prison”, is an autobiography written and based on the life of George Duvall. Through trial and hardship that most couldn’t even fathom, Duvall is able to avoid the prophecy bestowed upon him by his uncle, “you’ll be dead or in prison by the time you’re 13”(Duvall vi). Duvall’s writing for anyone from young adults to the elderly. The language he used while writing the book is simple; though the reader must be mature enough to reflect on the hardships Duvall faced and understand that some of the language in the book reflects the time period. This story spans from 1982, when Duvall’s uncle tells him of how dim his future looks, to 1996, when Duvall wrote “his Angel” and letter, thanking her for the incredible impact she had on his life.
Eventually down the road, Wilbert has lectured at universities, seminars, national and international conferences, and at meetings of organizations for the reform of the criminal justice system and against the death penalty. He also has been a consultant to both federal and state capital defense teams on dozens of cases around the country. Lastly, he also become an author writing about the American criminal justice system and the prison system. In the final analysis, from Wilbert Rideau becoming a strong positive representative to the lack of empathy that Vincent Simmons received, even though his case seemed a bit open and shut, to Eugene ‘Bishop’ Tannehill making a full turn around becoming a preacher to his once fellow inmates.
In Darrow’s closing argument he gives his famed “A Plea for Mercy” to the judge. This plea not only acted as a conclusion to his defense, but it also acted as an introduction the eradication of the death penalty. Darrow uses a mix of ethos, pathos, logos, and other rhetorical devices to impose a merciful effect on his audience in hopes to reduce his clients punishment and the use of capital punishment. Darrow gracefully uses all three appeals when referring to the rise of crime after war “I know that it has followed every war; and I know it has influenced these boys so that life was not the same to them as it would have been if the world had not been made red with blood.
The Right to Abortion On January 22, 1973, in a 7-2 ruling, the U.S. Supreme Court handed down it’s landmark decision in the case of Roe v. Wade, which recognized that the constitutional right to privacy extends to a woman’s right to make her own personal medical decisions — including the decision to have an abortion without interference from politicians (Planned Parenthood). There are many moments in history when Roe v. Wade has been so close to being overturned, yet it is still in place. Abortion should stay legal, or not overturned, for the health of women everywhere. First, this important case took place at the time of abortion being illegal in most states, including Texas, where Roe v. Wade began.
The article forced me to ponder about the existence of unfairness and injustice which inevitably and constantly hinders society because the individual discussed in the article experiences these factors in an unusual and rather extreme circumstance. William Goldman, the author of The Princess’ Bride once rhetorically questioned, “Who says life is fair, where is [this statement] written?”, which summarizes the outcomes of life itself. Humans frequently face adversity throughout daily lives, whether minor challenges or major hurdles; these problems include unretainable lost objects or the death of a beloved individual. To others, injustice may appear judicially and politically; Ivan Henry and David Milgaard were both wrongfully convicted of sexual
Men make laws to instill order in a society and prevent chaos in any shape or form. Naturally, laws will always be somewhat unjust because it is impossible to consistently construct laws that directly and equally benefit all members of a society. There will always be a majority that makes the laws and a minority that has to obey the laws. Although laws are usually the standard of morality by which we live by, they must be disobeyed in certain situations. These situations are, but not limited to, an undemocratic formation of aforementioned laws, laws that are inherently unjust according to human law which can be synonymous with God’s law. However, laws should get their legitimacy from religious backing, but the legitimacy should come from either the inherent goodness or
The Death with Dignity Act has two arguments: those who believe we have the right to choose how and when we die, and those who believe we do not possess that right; that we should not interfere with the natural order of life. Every year, people across America are diagnosed with a terminal illness. For some people there is time: time to hope for a cure, time to fight the disease, time to pray for a miracle. For others however, there is very little or no time. For these patients, their death is rapidly approaching and for the vast majority of them, it will be a slow and agonizing experience. However, there is hope of a peaceful death for these patients that exists in a controversial law being considered by many states throughout the country. It is known as the Death with Dignity Act. This law gives terminally ill patients the option of ending their own life in a painless manner at a time and place of their choosing by