- Watch the full Just Mercy movie while taking notes in preparation for answering the questions below. Access to the movie can be found through various streaming services (Links to an external site.). Read the questions ahead of time in preparation for your note-taking.
- As your Initial Post, due Saturday, 11:59pm, answer the following 12 questions in no fewer than 3-6 sentences each.
Your Just Mercy Experience
- Which specific scene in the film did you find particularly gripping, interesting, or unexpected? Why?
- Which character in the film did you particularly identified with? Why?
- Where did you find any examples of hope, resilience, or redemption in the film?
- The film does not feature the perspectives of the family of the victim, Ronda Morrison. What do you think they were feeling during the appeals of the case?
The Death Penalty and our Faith
- Before watching Just Mercy, what did you think about the death penalty? Has your sense of it changed? If so, how?
- How does your Christian faith influence your opinion of the death penalty?
- As Christians, we are called to uphold a consistent ethic of life, regardless of whether a person is innocent or guilty. Describe how this makes you feel. Would you have felt differently about Walter’s death sentence if he had been guilty of the crime?
Our Criminal Legal System
- In the film, during a conversation between Walter and Bryan, Walter says “In Alabama […] you’re guilty from the moment you’re born.” Why is this such a common refrain from African-American families?
- Throughout Just Mercy there are many examples of systemic inequities influencing legal decisions (e.g. systemic racism, poverty, lack of mental health services, and others). What are two specific ways you think these systemic factors complicate the task of those working for the criminal justice system to mete out justice in a fair and impartial way?
- Our country’s traditional legal system tends to focus solely on which law was broken, who is guilty, and how they should be punished. What are possible alternatives?
Law Enforcement Perspective
- What are the top three critiques you think law enforcement professionals would bring of this film?
- What are the top three lessons you think law enforcement professionals should take away from this film and apply to their work?