The Lady, or the Tiger - Essay Example

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The author states that the trial system introduced by the king was not fair according to the modern standards because the modern system offers the accused a chance to present their points of argument and no one is punished until the guilt is proved beyond doubt…
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The Lady, or the Tiger
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The Lady, or the Tiger? Admittedly, the king’s system of trying criminals was not a fair one for various reasons. Firstly, the king did not offer the accused a chance for fair trial where the arguments of the accused would be heard before the final judgment and punishment. Instead, the king had an amphitheater where the accused was given a chance to try their luck; not to be head and tried fairly (Stockton, par. 3).
In fact, the modern notions of punishment and justice stipulate that it is better that ten guilty persons escape than one innocent suffer. In other words, the modern system of trial is based on the principle that no innocent person, at any cost, should be punished. Therefore, there are lengthy trials before punishment and the accused is offered a chance to prove their side. In these days, the accused is punished only if the crime is proved beyond doubt. In sharp contrast, what the king offered was a mere chance to try ones luck before death. While opening one door could save their life, opening the other would make them prey to a beast. Though the king termed it “impartial and incorruptible” (Stockton, par. 3), it is, in fact, irrational.
Secondly, the reward system offered by the king is not sane. Every accused who escaped the beast was gifted with a beautiful bride irrespective of whether they wanted it or not. The story states, “It mattered not that he might already possess a wife and family…” (Stockton, par. 6). In other words, the reward was enforced on them. Admittedly, the modern day court systems order compensation when someone is implicated with malicious intent. However, the compensation depends on the degree of damage caused and whether the person asks for it.
In total, it is clear that the trial system introduced by the king was not fair according to the modern standards because the modern system offers the accused a chance to present their points of argument and no one is punished until the guilt is proved beyond doubt. In addition, these days, punishment is decided based on the seriousness of the crime, the circumstances which led to the crime and various other factors.
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Stockton, Frank R. “The Lady, or the Tiger?”. Read More
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