In “Crito,” Plato uses Socrates as a tool to argue the point. Socrates is in jail for “preaching false gods” and “corrupting the youth” by causing them to doubt or disregard the wisdom of their elders. His friend Crito comes to visit and pleads with him to escape from his imprisonment and death sentence. Socrates asks Crito to give him one good reason that will hold up to scrutiny to persuade him, and then he will choose to escape. Crito brings up how people would think of him because he wouldn’t spend his money to get his friend out of jail.
Socrates looked out for his state, while Crito’s arguments were based on himself and how others would view him. Socrates’ conclusion to stay in the prison may have cost him his life, but his act saved the morality and truth of Athens. Works Cited Wolff, Robert Paul. “Ten Great Works of Philosophy”. New York: Penguin Group, 1969.
Euthypro early in the conversation even compares himself as being likewise in thought with Socrates. Euthypro tells Socrates that the people are jealous of them and they must be brave in approaching them. Then instantly as a true hypocrite, Euthypro takes a step back when he tells Socrates that he is never likely to anger the people in Athens as he does. Since they obviously think alike, the difference is that Socrates is willing to openly speak the truth of his mind regardless of the consequences, while Euthypro out of fear for his way of life barely publicly shares his thoughts. Since Euthypro isn’t willing to go out in public, he could never be accused like Socrates of corrupting anyone since no one hears him.
His long time friend Crito proposes to Socrates a plan to escape from his death sentence in prison. Crito and Socrates argue the issue of escape with Socrates deciding on accepting his sentence. I feel that in light of his beliefs Socrates was ethically correct in refusing to escape from prison. It was important to Socrates that he have good reasons not only to motivate but also to justify his actions. Socrates was concerned that his actions not only be good, but be just and noble as well.
Socrates was being guided by his moral beliefs when he decided not to escape from prison. Socrates informs us of his principle when he says, “[…] my first principle, that neither injury nor retaliation not warding off evil by evil is ever right.”(1). Retaliation and injuring other people is what Socrates did not lived by. For this reason, Socrates knew that if he were to escape, the state would prosecute his family and friends. Consequently, Socrates was afraid that the state would harm his family by depriving them of property or citizenship.
The writer however, feels that it was a wise decision for Socrates to simply condemn the jury and accept his fate. In a statement the writer states, “Socrates had agreed to abide by whatever Athens required of him in return.” Analyzing Socrates commitment and obligation to Athens is vital. However, his decision not to escape and flee are reasonable, but his acceptance of his unjustly sentencing is not. Therefore, Socrates’ decision to not act on an illegitimate sentencing was foolish and as a citizen he should have appealed his
The just speech warns Pheidippides that “he will persuade you to believe everything shameful is noble and the noble is shameful” (Aristophanes, 1020-1021). Aristophanes’ claim is that the challenges Socrates makes against the law are not good for the city or society as a whole. Though he might agree that some of the laws of Athens are not just, Aristophanes sees them as necessary to keeping the peace. To him, the philosopher is the one who stirs up rebellion or fights against order. The
A. Under trial for corrupting youth and not worshiping the Gods in Athens, Socrates takes an attitude that many might interpret as pompous during his trial. Rather than apologise, as Plato’s dialogue title Apology suggests, Socrates explains why he is right and those who accused him are mistaken. He speaks in a plain manner, as if the jury is just another of his followers. Socrates first cites the profit at Delphi for why he behaves in ways that lead to him being under scrutiny of the law.
Although, I expected that people would react this way to my actions, or lack of actions, regarding Socrates death. For Socrates, being executed was the only option available to him. Of course we, his friends, could have helped him to escape, but what would that prove? It would only go against everything that Socrates has taught us. It would also defy everything that Socrates stood for in life.
Socrates was considered by many to be the wisest man in ancient Greece. While he was eventually condemned for his wisdom, his spoken words are still listened to and followed today. When, during his trial, Socrates stated that, “the unexamined life is not worth living” (Plato 45), people began to question his theory. They began to wonder what Socrates meant with his statement, why he would feel that a life would not be worth living. To them, life was above all else, and choosing to give up life would be out of the picture.