Just Mercy By Bryan Stevenson

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In the book Just Mercy by Bryan Stevenson is a memoir where Bryan Stevenson guides us through his life as a lawyer for those who are death sentence. From 1983 when he was student at Harvard Law to 2013 where he lost a client he was defending for years , he takes us through several cases he has taken over the years and showed how they personally impacted him as not only as a lawyer , but a person as well. Bryan Stevenson first got into death penalty cases to gain experience for school. The kids at Harvard advanced degrees and obtained great amount of experience. Therefore, Bryan felt pressure to catch up, but he wanted to “something with the poor, America’s history of racial inequality, and the struggle to be equitable and fair with one another”. He then stumbled upon an course as an attorney for the NAACP legal defense fund and he was able to fly down to Atlanta to work with an attorney named Steve. On the plane Bryan and steve talked about the life that comes with involved with death penalty cases, describing it as “surviving off the kindness of strangers, scraping by day by day, uncertain of the future.” He then met his first client named Henry where Bryan felt inadequate to help by continuously saying “ I’m a law student” and “I’m sorry” , but after receiving that news that his life had not yet been cut short yet, Henry was was grateful. Henry then began singing and from there Bryan took it as a “precious gift”. After this experience , Bryan knew this is what he wanted to do with his life. In addition, Bryan’s personal background also affected how he made this decision. Bryan grew up in poor rural area in Delaware where people were divided by “colored sections” by railroads. This is an area wher... ... middle of paper ... ...gardless of the circumstances. This reminds me of the book Invisible man where he felt he was not in being heard or understood in the society he lived in. This was also the case with the security guard Avery where he gave Bryan a hard time at the prison to meet a client with a mental illness(Mr. Jenkins). Avery threatened Bryan with the confederate flag and making him take off his clothes to to his client. However, when Avery realizes the client has similar traumatizing childhoods, he apologizes to Bryan for his behavior. “It is about how easily we condemn people in this country and the injustice we create when we allow fear, anger, and distance to shape the way we treat the most vulnerable among us.” This lead to the conclusion that empathy and sympathy are important for everyone to have so everyone can relate with each other regardless of what race, sex, or view.
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