About 20,000 innocent people in the U.S. are in prison for crimes they didn’t commit, according to the Huffington Post. This fact is relates to the novel To Kill a Mockingbird, by Harper Lee, where readers follow the main character, Scout, as she endeavors to understand her cryptic, Southern-Alabaman community. More specifically, the notorious trial of Tom Robinson, a local black man who has been accused of raping Mayella Ewell, a young white woman. Although Judge Taylor specifically appointed Atticus to represent Tom, the trial was unfair because the jury ignored the concrete evidence presented by the defense.
Because the jury did not favor black men, Tom Robinson did not receive a fair trial, although Atticus made a great case. Segregation directly disobeys the fourteenth amendment, “No state shall make or enforce any law which shall abridge the privileges or immunities of citizens of the United States.” Maycomb Alabama is where the story, To Kill a Mockingbird takes place. Tom Robinson’s trial out come was not based on factual evidence. Mayella was lying to the jury, while Tom was completely innocent. He could not have done everything that Mayella said he did, due to the fact that he one has one working arm. The other arm was caught up in a cotton grind. Further more, it would be highly unlikely that Tom Robinson could have beat and raped Mayella the way she said he did.
As stated in the novel, a white man's words is always won against a black man’s. "The one place where a man ought to get a square deal is in a courtroom, be he any color of the rainbow, but people have a way of carrying their resentments right into a jury box"(Chapter 23). In this case the power is in one person’s words based on the color of their skin. Through the eyes of the courtroom nobody was blinded nor equal. The color of one’s skin determined who was guilty and who was innocent.
This essay will examine three types of disparities that happen under the United States sentencing today. Judges tend to look at the characteristics of the victim involved in the crime to determine the outcome of the sentence. Why should someone’s race, gender, or even religion effect the time they receive for their jail sentence? The 1984 Sentencing Reform Act (SRA) was created to eliminate disparities, basically explaining how one’s ethnicity, gender, and religion should not affect their sentencing. Even with this act existing, race and gender has still plays a huge part on unnecessary sentencing lengths.
Justice. The dictionary definition of that word is "just behavior or treatment". In the 1960's when "To Kill A Mockingbird" was written blacks were still facing prejudice for being colored, even though the story takes place in the 1930's. They were stereotyped and not given a chance to show who they really were. Some people may think that justice is the same for everyone, in my eyes I think some people are shown more justice than others. We know that in our U.S constitution it says that all men are created equal so I strongly feel that if we all are created equal, shouldn't we get equal justice?I feel the amount of justice you receive is based off of who you are, and by that I mean are you rich or poor, white or black. In the book "To Kill
In my opinion that is truly unfair. It makes sense as to why Atticus decided to defend Tom Robinson. He continuously tries to find the good in everyone and believes that the black community contains good people. Atticus had mentioned to his brother, Jack, that Tom was innocent but “doomed”. It was impossible
The court system is constantly referred to as“unfair” due to racism occurring in different cases. Some members of different ethnicities have come forward saying that they receive more severe punishments than white people, this is an injustice to these other ethnicity members. This is incorrect because of the way the United States’ policies. America runs the justice system not on discrimination, but on how severe the the . Systematic racism is not present in current criminal justice systems.
In To Kill a Mockingbird an innocent man by the name of Tom Robinson loses his life. “In our courts, when it's a white man's word against a black man's, the white man always wins” (Lee 38). Tom Robinson was tried on a case of rape, and with him being black, his word had less of a say than a white man's. With that he was wrongfully convicted of raping a girl. No matter what evidence he and Atticus could pull together, it wouldn’t change the mind of the jury.
Tom Robinson represents a mockingbird slain by injustice and racial prejudice. Robinson is a gracious African American unjustly convicted and executed for a crime he did not commit. He was a caring person, concerned for Mayella Ewell’s well-being despite her skin color. Robinson did not make any effort to push Ewell away from her approaches, but decided to flee without harming Ewell in any way. As it was a custom to lynch a black man accused of raping a white woman, the Maycomb folk attempted to lynch Robinson for entertainment. Robinson was left to suffer the wrath of injustice. The jurors decided that he was guilty despite of his innocence. It was stated in the constitution that “when it’s a white man’s word over the black man’s word, the
Injustice is the plaque of the century. In the novel “To Kill A Mockingbird” by Harper Lee, Lee happily shines a light on the subject of injustice. One theme Lee provides us with is that even if the odds are not in your favor (due to class, race, and color?), justice is a right and something worth fighting for.
In Harper Lee’s, To Kill a Mockingbird, it is shown that when people view justice through the eyes of society, true justice no longer exists. Despite all of Atticus’ effort to prove Tom’s innocence, he is declared guilty and sent to prison. During his trial, it eventually becomes apparent that Tom is innocent, but the entire trial was never actually about who the real convict was because, to society, it all came down to White v. Black. Atticus recognized this, and sadly found that even hoping for the innocent Tom Robinson to go free was a lost cause. He had known, from the beginning, what side society had chosen: race over true justice.
Trials held in America at the time of these two productions were never fair to African Americans because of the makeup, views, and general nature of juries. Juries never could fully understand the views and motives of the defendant because they were not consisted of the defendant’s peers. In To Kill A Mockingbird, Tom Robinson was convicted by a jury made up of middle-aged, white men, so they were unable to understand and view the case from Tom’s point of view. When talking to Scout, Atticus says that most people in Maycomb believe that white people are superior to black people, and that is how it is in court as well. He says,,
Harper Lee expressed the controversial side to the idea of justice in her award winning novel To Kill a Mockingbird. Justice is a complex subject to examine. Each person has their own interpretation of what justice is. This is due to the fact that justice is situational. This novel clearly exemplifies a message of standing up for what is lawful. However, it is tremendously difficult to form a rebuttal against the actions of some characters in this novel.
To kill a mockingbird is a very inspiring story written by, Harper Lee. Harper Lee tells the story of a small southern family, and what their life was like. Her book was filled with many life lessons and respectable characters. One very likeable character in particular, is Atticus Finch. He is a wonderful father, friend, and lawyer. He also shows many honorable traits throughout the story. Atticus is honest, fair, humble, and brave.
The main theme of the book is that fairness and justice are two virtues that are extremely hard to find. The central question, “How can a virtuous person continue to believe in these morals and not get discouraged?” is portrayed by the central characters Atticus and Scout. The deeply ingrained prejudice, that people of color cannot hope to live up to those who are “high class and white ” is explored and exposed. Sexism and class warfare are other conflicts within the story line. People in Maycomb are discriminated against because of the color of their skin, their social class and their gender.