The purpose of this essay is to examine groupthink and to represent Dr. Irving Janis’ symptoms of groupthink in the film. After viewing the film 12 Angry Men, this movie shows a jury of men trying to decide the verdict in the case of a teenager accused of murdering his father. A simple task for the jury deciding on if the teenager is guilty or not guilty turns into irrational decision-making. The 1957 film is an immense example of how groupthink can
Interestingly enough, on the previous page Juror Ten is called out by Juror Four (60). The foreman also has some prejudice at the beginning of the case. He brings up another case that is similar to the one they are doing. He says the defendant accused of murder was let off and “eight years later they found out that he’d actually done it, anyway” (12). Prejudice clouds a person’s judgement and does not allow the individual to see all the facts.
Every juror had his own set of prejudices which gave way to so many fallacies to come up. The fallacies here are listed juror wise, all the fallacious traits observed in one juror at a time. 1) Juror 1: i) The juror changes his opinion after listening to the explanations of how the knife was used to hit the man. This could be a fallacy of False Cause. This can be said because just by knowing the way murder was done, it could not be concluded that the kid was
Prejudice in this book is present and as a jury in the trial, it can bad for the accused in many ways depending on what the crime was committed. A man was murdered and the son of that man is the only one known to be with him that night yet claims to have been elsewhere. The jurors are the only ones to determine this guy’s future to be proven innocent, or falsely accused guilty by the preconceived notion of the juries. Only one jury stood out only because he knew the right for a fair trial is to be upon this man and as for everyone, the only one who hasn’t judged the boy in any way. Juror number three thought he was a slum as if any other slum would be, a criminal living trashy and even think they’re stupid.
I’m one of the innocents who could have spoken up and out when no one would listen to the “guilty”, but I did not speak and thus became guilty myself’”(Bradbury, 82). If people do not stay cowardly and stand up to the bad situations going on they can make a difference. When a person lets other people do bad things like killing that makes them as guilty as the killer. Even when society says that crimes and killing are okay but a person knows it is wrong they cannot keep quiet. If the person does stay quiet they are saying it is okay to do morally wrong acts which is wrong.
He then tries to transfer the audience’s pity to Tom Robinson, who is the real victim in the courtroom. He calls out the ‘witnesses’ for assuming that the jury would believe them just because of Robinson’s skin color. By doing this he appeals to the jury’s emotions by claiming that they are smarter than only judging on skin color. He addresses the racist prejudices that the jury might have had and tells them they are better than that, making them feel guilty for the racism they may have felt. Atticus tells the jury he is sure that they will make the right decision, saying, “Now I am confident that you gentlemen will review without passion the evidence that you have heard, come to a decision, and restore this man to his family.” He is putting additional pressure on them to make a choice based on facts and not on prejudiced ideas about race.
Why should the color of someone’s skin effect a crime that was committed? In the vignette of “Twelve Angry Men” the author, Reginald Rose addresses racism. According to act three on page 27 the Jurors are coming to a vote on whether or not the boy was guilty or not. The boy claimed that he wasn’t guilty of committing a premeditated murder but Juror number ten said otherwise. The evidence that is shown to prove this point is when all the jurors are all at the table and they all go to the window and turn their backs towards juror number ten, specifically juror numbers three and four.
I thought it was obvious. I mean nobody proved otherwise.’ – This is the justification given by juror 2 on why he thinks that the boy is guilty. This statement involves the ‘Appeal to Ignorance’. Just by saying that nobody proved that God doesn’t exist, therefore God exists, isn’t enough. Likewise, saying that nobody proved that boy isn’t guilty, so he is guilty, involves error.
An example of this would be the beginning of chapter 22. Atticus had told Jem that the jury had called an African American guilty and “they’ll do it again and when they do it-seems that only children weep.”(Lee 243). After the Atticus lost the case against Mr. Gilmer, Jem had said that he could not understand why the jury had said that Tom Robinson was guilty. But Atticus had said that he doesn’t know why they counted him guilty but they have done it before and will continue to make him guilty. Even though the readers know that Tom Robinson is not guilty, the court had ruled that Tom Robinson was guilty, due to the amount of racism found in Maycomb.
They were all accused of a crime they did not commit. Victoria Price and Ruby Bates were the accusers when they “pointed [out] six of the nine boys and said they were the ones who raped [them]” (Linder, The Trials of the Scottsboro Boys). Bob Ewell was quick to accuse Tom Robinson of the rape crime while Mayella went along. On the trial stands Mr. Ewell states the he had “seen that black nigger yonder ruttin’ on my Mayella” (Lee 231). Many believed the accusations, and even though there were many inconsistencies were found in the accuser’s testimonies the defendants were still considered guilty before the trial had even begun due to their skin color.
Not only did the attorney use no real evidence to support his case towards Jefferson but the attorney also was not confident in his case. In one part of the court scenes Jefferson’s attorney states “He is innocent from all charges against him. But let’s just say he was not. Let us for a moment say he was not. What justice would there be to take this life?” ( Gaines pg: 8) This is a perfect example on how the attorney believes Jefferson is guilty in his case because in the end he gave the jury a mental image for a moment to vision Jefferson being guilty and then comparing the relationship on whether it matters to keep this man alive or not.
Convicting the Innocent: Where Criminal Prosecutions Go Wrong In Brandon L. Garrett 's book, Convicting the Innocent: Where Criminal Prosecutions Go Wrong, he makes it very clear how wrongful convictions occur and how these people have spent many years in prison for crimes they never committed. Garrett presents 250 cases of innocent people who were convicted wrongfully because the prosecutors opposed testing the DNA of those convicted. Garrett provided simple statistics such as graphs, percentages, and charts to help the reader understand just how great of an impact this was. These wrongful convictions occur because the criminal justice system had many flaws. It was not only the system that had flaws but also the people on the board.
Today, people are innocent until proven guilty. For the people accused it was hard to find evidence that proved their innocence so they remained guilty. Also, he did not allow a lawyer for the people that were accused of witchcraft. He expected them to be able to defend themselves when most of them did not
They can take away my heart, but I know in my heart that I did not do these alleged acts" (Bohm & Haley, 2014, p.309). He plans to fight and overturn the verdicts. I do not think there is enough evidence to be able to overturn the verdicts. The evidence that was presented was the eight boy’s statements that were testified. One thing that would hold is the cover up that his piers were convicted of dealing with his crime and the juveniles testimonies if they all were similar to Sandusky’s ways to which the jury will be convinced.
Juror Nine votes not guilty because he admires Juror Eight for standing alone against the majority. Once the jurors start to discuss the case again Juror Seven questions who else would have the motive to kill this boy’s father. Juror Eight rebuts by saying, “As far as I know, we’re supposed to decide whether or not the boy on trial is guilty. We’re not concerned with anyone else’s motives here” (Rose 240). The main priority is to discuss the defendant’s innocence or guilt.