Hope In Bryan Stevenson's Just Mercy

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In Bryan Stevenson’s “Just Mercy,” there is an underlying sense of hope that is seen in spurts through the constant stories of injustice and unfairness that take place. Throughout the book there are multiple people that are wrongly condemned and have to suffer on the dreaded death row. All of the inmates of the row know they will eventually be executed, but only a select few stay positive and give the reader a sense of hope in such a negative situation. Mr. Jenkins is one of those men. The mentally ill man was in and out of foster care as a child, and his terrible experiences lead to more serious brain damage. The trauma lead to him stabbing a man without even knowing it, which brought him to the death row. Not only does he have to deal with …show more content…

Jenkins. The security guard is portrayed as the stereotypical southern white man, who believes he is better than everyone else and plays the tough guy role. After his eventful encounter, he meets with Mr. Jenkins who immediately asks, “Did you bring me a chocolate milkshake?” Mr. Stevenson is surprised and responds that he did not know Mr. Jenkins wanted one and will try to bring one the following visit, which make Mr. Jenkins smile. As a reader, the question and reaction enlightens the rather depressing mood, which creates a sense of hope. After hearing the gruesome background of Mr. Jenkins, the reader now wants to see him receive his milkshake and be happy. After a number of court hearings, Mr. Stevenson goes back to the prison to meet yet again with Mr. Jenkins. He runs into the security guard again, but this time, he behaves differently, asking Mr. Stevenson how he is. As they continue their conversation, the reader discovers that the security guard also had a tough childhood in foster care and felt bad for Mr. Jenkins, not knowing how bad he had it. Then he finally says, “Well anyway, I wanted you to know that I took an exit off the interstate on the way back. And, well, I took him to Wendy’s, and I bought him a chocolate

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