Monday, October 7, 2013

Counter-Assessment: Free Food!

After the jury finds Socrates guilty and Meletus asks for a penalty of death, Socrates has the option to provide a counter-proposal for his punishment. He begins by saying that he has done a great service to the people of Athens because he was constantly questioning them about their lives and trying to get them to think about important things like virtue and morality. For such a service, he says he should be treated to free meals at the Prytaneum (where people like Olympians were honored). He then says the he will not do himself harm by saying that he deserved punishment. He says even if he were exiled, he would get kicked out the next city for the same thing probably, so he would have to continue wandering. He says he cannot stop asking questions because "the unexamined life is not worth living". He finally says that he could afford a 1 mina fine, although his friends could help him with up to 30 mina. Unsurprisingly, the jury rejects his counter-proposal and they sentence Socrates to death.

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