Justice Is It Really Bieng Served Essay

Justice: Is It Really Bieng Served Essay, Research Paper

Justice: Is it Really Being Served ?

Crime is a very serious issue in today?s society that is

talked about through many different methods, media, television

programs, etc.. Clarence Darrow?s speech, ?Address to the

Prisoners in the Cook County Jail? displays a very strong feeling

on whether or not ?criminals? in jail our really at fault for

their crimes or if it?s the fault of those people on the

?outside?, those not in jail. Once being a lawyer himself and

defending criminals like Nathan Leopold and Richard Loeb, both

notorious murders, Darrow has a strong insight on hard core

criminals and the legal system. He utilizes his experience and

knowledge along with the appeals of pathos, logos and ethos, to

gain the respect and opinions of his audience.

Darrow?s main purpose in this speech is to state his

feelings of disregard for the justice system. He feels as though

jails do not serve a true purpose and that people are not in jail

because they deserve to be but rather because of unavoidable

circumstance. Those who obtain money hold the power and those who

are poverty stricken will be punished, no matter who was at fault

or who did the crime.

This piece was a speech to prisoners in a Chicago jail and

therefore, it seems as if his targeted audience must have been

the criminals themselves. However, he must have also been

targeting the politician?s and legal personnel for the tone of

his sentences and the beliefs he stated would do no justice for

those already in prison and must have been intended to influence

those people on the ?outside?.

Darrow strikes the pathetic or the emotional appeal

instantly in his first paragraph: ? I do not believe that people

are in jail because they deserve to be. They are in jail simply

because they cannot avoid it on account of circumstances which

are entirely beyond their control and for which they are in no

way responsible? (862). This statement alone could create an

uproar in any prison. Darrow uses great diction in this quote,

using it as, a persuasive tool, to slip past the scrutiny of

readers and sway them toward particular responses. With a

statement as powerful as that one how can a person not begin to

ponder on why these people are in jail and if the prisoners are

really at fault for their crimes.

Through the use of tone Darrow triggers the mind into

believing that the people that are on the outside are the ones

that create the havoc and those on the inside, the prisoners, are

mere victims of their ruthlessness. ?If it were not for the fact

that people on the outside are so grasping and heartless in their

dealings with the people on the inside, there would be no such

institution as jails? (863). The words seem to creep into your

mind making one feel as though he is correct in what he is

saying. It is as if one can hear the power and persuasiveness in

his voice speaking to the prisoners allowing one to have no

choice but to believe him.

Darrow targets the emotional appeal in his closing

paragraph, ? The only way to abolish crime and criminals is to

abolish the big ones and the little ones together. Give men a

chance to live. Abolish the right of private ownership of land,

abolish monopoly, make the world partners in production, partners

in the good things in life? (872). With his style of using harsh

and abrupt sentences Darrow produces the feeling that if we would

create an equality amongst us all that people would not

experience hardship, there would be no crime, hate and

competition. The length of Darrow?s sentences seem to bring about

different attitudes and feelings. His shorter sentences seem

blunt or terse, where his longer sentences, that delay closure,

posses more of a dramatic effect.

In addition to stimulating ones emotions, Darrow appeals to

the logical reasoning side of the audience:

Whenever the standard Oil Company raises the price of

oil, I know that a certain number of girls who are

seamstresses, and who work night after night long hours

for somebody else, will be compelled to go out on the

streets and ply another trade, and I know that Mr.

Rockerfeller and his associates are responsible and not

the poor girls in the jail cell? (866).

He leads us to believe that it is the fault of the rich and not

that of the poor. If the rich would not be so money hungry and

greedy they would not raise the prices of oil and create these

girls to not be able to afford it. In another aspect Darrow

acquires us by placing the blame on the government. ?In England

and Ireland and Scotland less than five percent own all the land

there is, and the people are bound to stay there on any terms

that landlords give. They must live the best they can, so they

develop all these various professions- burglary, picking pockets

and the like? (869). We must visualize that it is not the fault

of the people but rather the fault of the landlords. For they

give the rules and they are the ones who do not set forth

adequate salaries to the people. ?So long as men are allowed to

monopolize all the earth and compel others to live on such terms

as these men see fit to make, then you are bound to get into

jail? (872). In a simple sense, as long as we create a world

where we allow men to rule over us we will never succeed in

eliminating the crimes and injustice that take place.

?The more that is taken from the poor by the rich, who have

the chance to take it, the more the people there are who are

compelled to resort to these means of livelihood? (867). Once

again Darrow manages to state that it is the people on the

outside of these jail cells and there queries that place the poor

on the inside. ?They do not accomplish what they pretend to

accomplish. If you would wipe them out there would be no more

criminals then now. They terrorize nobody. They are a blot upon

civilization, and a jail is an evidence of the lack of charity of

the people on the outside who make the jails and fill them with

victims of their greed? (872). Another powerful statement that

accuses those with the wealth for the misfortunes of those of the

poor leading the poor to be criminals. Again stated earlier, in

Darrows eyes if this world could only possess true equality all

crime would be abolished and all jails and prisoners could be

disregarded. He uses a good choice of words that seem to grab at

the reader allowing the reader to sympathize and feel the pain of

the poverty stricken, and the prisoners. Through drastic tone and

pitch Darrow uses, his quotes are influential and go straight to

the readers heart and mind.

The ethos of Darrow is quite a touchy subject. Although he

was a lawyer for several years he obtains no solid evidence, only

well worded statements and descriptions that place thoughts and

visions into ones head. His words possess great power and one

could be easily influenced by them. It is now in the readers hand

to formulate their own opinion and decide whether or not their is

truth in Darrow?s accusations. The reader must rely solely on the

fact that Darrow is in the legal profession and has inside

information on what truly transpires.

Darrow?s theories can be summed up almost as easily as they

were first introduced. He feels that the only way to get rid of

crimes and criminals is to abandon it all. The only way that this

world will rid of the misdeed that goes on is to create a pure

world with absolute equality.


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