Theformal charges filed by Meletus, Lyncon, and Anytus against are guilty of corrupting the youth and not trusting in Greek gods.The plaintiffs accuse of misleading many young people whodepend on him for advice. Additionally, Meletus accuses ofnot believing in Greek gods because he questions everything (Cooper28). Informal charges include the study of objects in the heavens andunderneath the surface and turning around arguments. doesnot believe that living things come out of nowhere and he studied theheavens and earth trying to come up with an answer. At the time, sucha thing was unheard of, and scholars accused him of trying to do awaywith tradition by studying objects above the skies and beneath theearth. Since has the incredible ability to turn argumentsaround, people accuse him of charging for his services and comparehim to sophists. denies both the formal and informal chargesand insists that he is simply a man who knows nothing and all he doesis question individuals who think they understand everything when inreality they are just as a clueless as him (Cooper 25). Comparing hisnew accusers (Meletus, Lyncon, and Anytus) to his numerous old foes,he fears the latter more because they have influence and can easilyshift the arguments in their favor (Cooper 23). In his defenceagainst the accusers, does not regret the kind of life thathe has lived and he believes the best way for a person to enjoy lifeis to ask questions about what is not familiar. In other words, anunexamined existence is not worth exploring.
Critobelieves that should leave Athens and escape his executionbecause his life matters more than anything else. He also pleads with to consider the kind of harm his execution would bring tohis friends. Crito tells that his reputation will be atstake if he lets him die with all his wealth still intact – thepublic would see Crito as a very selfish man (Cooper 47). As aconcerned friend, Crito asks to reconsider his decision andthink about the life of his children after he is executed – heargues that they will be left as orphans which is not fair. Tocounter these arguments, first states that the mere fear ofexecution is not a valid reason to escape as it contradicts with allhis previous reasons for staying. He then tells Crito to stopworrying about the views of the majority and only consider theopinions of the wise for they will understand why he left his frienddie. Even if chooses to escape and take care of hischildren, he will not live a just life. agreed to be triedby the state and to abide by its rules. Although his judgment wasrather harsh, he had to accept it since he had a contract withAthenians to abide by the law. Additionally, escaping will only bringmore harm than good to and those closest to him. It is wrongto retaliate against those who do harm because they will inflict morepain. If escaped, his family and friends (those left inAthens) would suffer under the hands of those in authority (Cooper58). Disobeying the sentence of the jury and running away only provesto the authorities that they were right about the – he isa law breaker. Therefore, staying and accepting punishment meant that did not believe his guilt and he wanted to die a just andhonorable individual.
Cooper,John M. Plato:Five Dialogues: Euthyphro, Apology, Crito, Meno, Phaedo.Hackett Publishing, 2002.
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