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Just Mercy Book Report

Essay by   •  February 9, 2019  •  Book/Movie Report  •  332 Words (2 Pages)  •  140 Views

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Every once in a while a book comes along that makes you think and even changes the way you look at certain situations “Just Mercy” is one of those books. Stevenson attended Eastern College, a Christian institution outside Philadelphia, and then Harvard Law School. His focus to defend the poor began during college when he took an intensive class on race and poverty litigation. He was required to spend a month with an organization doing social justice work. They sent him to Georgia to work with the Southern Prisoners Defense Committee. Bryan Stevenson’s Just Mercy tells the story of a lawyer fighting for those wrongfully accused and put on death row. This novel was an incredibly moving piece of work and undoubted opened my eyes to the crucial problems happening in the criminal justice system.

First, Bryan Stevenson focuses the main theme of his novel on the statement, “the opposite of poverty is not wealth, the opposite of poverty is justice.” In the novel, it brings up issues such as the death penalty, racial profiling, as well as inequality and poverty to emphasize the corruption not many are aware about. Bryan Stevenson battles racial injustice and represents many poor, people of color, mentally ill and young offenders. Their stories are distributed throughout the book as he recounts his defense of Walter McMillian, a black man on death row. In the late 1980’s, Stevenson’s legal firm first took up the cause of Walter McMillian, who was wrongfully convicted and sentenced to death for the murder of a white woman. The state’s case had many inconsistencies. They manufactured stories from witnesses who said they were with Walter when he committed the crime and disregarded accounts from many eyewitnesses who said they were with Walter at a church fundraiser. The legal system was determined to find someone to convict for this murder and decided Walter would be prosecuted because of his affair with a prominent white woman which was a crime during



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