Gideon's Trumpet Analysis Essay

1434 Words Nov 23rd, 2012 6 Pages
Everyday people around the nation are brought to trial. The litigants may or may not have sufficient resources, but are still entitled to a fair trial under the Sixth Amendment. Clarence Earl Gideon was accused of felony by the state of Florida and did not have the money for attorney representation. Instead, Gideon had to approach the Florida court system blinded by the rules of litigation and unaware of the processes of making an argument. He was helpless and could not win the battle, eventually being sentenced to five years in prison. In America, people are supposed to be treated equal in the eyes of the law, yet Gideon’s circumstance was unjust. As he ultimately reached the Supreme Court of the United States, Gideon was given an …show more content…
Historical background or precedent can lead to outcomes, along with the values of the particular judge in the current political climax. At the time of Gideon v. Wainwright (1963), there was a Dynamic Court view. The Civil Rights Movement was taking place and dramatic changes were established and incorporated into law. At the time, the judges were very anti-majoritarian, paying more attention to the smaller groups with legitimate claims. In addition, the Supreme Court judges were willing to ignore precedent and institute new just laws, with the help of high policy-making degrees. Life tenure did tend to play a significant role, as federal judges did not have to fear the loss of their seat in the Supreme Court (Cover 22). Decisions could be made that would expand civil liberties for the betterment of society. A prime example is the controversial Brown v. Board of Education in 1954, which overturned Plessey v. Ferguson, stating that “separate but equal is inherently unequal”. With a Dynamic Court view and respectable legal representation, you can say that there was a way for the “have not” to come out ahead. In the end, Gideon was victorious.
On the contrary, you could argue that Gideon did have the resources. After all, Abe Fortas was a strong, reputable lawyer, who knew the rules and strategies of litigation. Furthermore, he had the Dynamic Court on his side. Gideon also had the ability to cause a great expense to the

Related Documents