Summary Of Unjust And Inhumane By Bryan Stevenson

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Author and lawyer Bryan Stevenson chronicles the unjust and inhumane stories of multiple prisoners throughout the South. He tries to appeal and save each individual from unethical sentences that were handed down upon them. Stevenson uses this book as way to shine a very bright light on the unfair practices and sentences that consistently happen throughout American court rooms to the mentally ill and the vulnerable. He is able to provide a prologue for each prisoner and case he encounters that provides crucial information that can potentially alter whether each client would end up dying in prison, or have the potential to see life outside of cement walls and bars. Stevenson is able to show readers the unfair practices of not only prosecutors …show more content…

Whether it is institutional racism, racial profiling, unfair sentencing, and racial inequality; each of these issues were a constant theme throughout each case that he covered. It was surprising to see that to an outsider like Stevenson, was able address these issues that were so clear and apparent for every case. While for the prosecutors and judges involved, these issues were discarded and ignored. The case of Joe Sullivan was a prime example of this injustice. Sullivan was an impressionable young 13 year old boy that committed two burglaries with two older boys. After the burglaries, a stranger went and raped the same woman that they burglarized. At 13 years old, Sullivan was sentenced to life without parole even though he had no involvement with the rape and very little involvement with the burglary. He was a child that was unfairly thrown into prison with grown men, his previous family history and trauma was disregarded, the evidence against him was destroyed. Lastly, he was repeatedly raped and abused in prison where he then eventually developed Multiple Sclerosis. This case was especially troubling for Stevenson because Sullivan was racially profiled as a bad, dangerous, black boy, and he was sentenced like he was a habitual criminal when clearly he was not. He made one bad choice at a young that should have not defined the rest of his life. Racial profiling, according to Majority-Minor Relations by John E. Farley, is the act of suspecting a person is doing something wrong only based on their race and physical behaviors, rather than their actual actions and intentions (Farley, 349). Sullivan was racially profiled by the judge and prosecutors as a horrible individual, even though he was the farthest thing from. Ultimately, even though Sullivan’s case was not overturned, it was used as a reference from for the Graham vs. Florida

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