Certainly, the dialogue and the argument took place in Socrates prison, where he awaited his execution. Crito, his long time paid Socrates a visit in order to organize and arrange for his escape. In his arguments, Socrates seems to be remarkably comfortable with the execution. Hence, Crito persuaded him using different arguments. Socrates was in a death penalty row for what the state authorities saw to be a corruption of the young people by use of dialogue, which adds to a charge of impiety not in favor of the state1. Socrates based his argument on a moral issue; he argues that an individual in society has the highest duty to the city, goodness, justice, as well as the truth, rather than family, survival instinct and friends. I agree on the arguments of Socrates.
The arguments of Crito as not out of reason but emotional, yet all his life Socrates has based all his arguments on his entire life. Ultimately, the argument of Socrates honors reason, and uses as a weapon to expose lies and find justice, and truth in society2. Socrates was right when he turned down emotional advice of Crito, this is because going against reason, would be a totally betrayal to his lifetime principles, and values.
The arguments of Socrates against Critos advice coincide with his whole life teachings. Crito argued that leaving Socrates to undergo a death penalty would reflect how bad his friends are. Hence, he argued that he wanted to safe his friend. According to Socrates on his answer said that people should not be worried on what the public would say, but only take note of expert and wise advice. Socrates argument is exceptionally good. This is because we should not worry about what others will say, but focus on behaving well on personal and public level. In fact, the only thing that will make Socrates accept Critos advice is the issue of justice3.
Perhaps, to elaborate on the issue of justice, Socrates came up with the law of Athens. It would be very unjust for him to escape prison. This is because laws exist in society as one entity. Hence, breaking one would mean breaking all. In the real sense, if Socrates being in prison is unjust4. Then escaping from prison would be the best option. As a matter of fact, laws in most cases are just, bust the people who implement the law are unjust. Hence, if Socrates remains in prison, he will be siding with the unjust individual. On the other hand, when he escapes he will be going against the just laws.
The entire arguments of Socrates confuse individuals so much. But, despite its difficulty, it motivates individuals to focus on laws and issue of justice, as well as base arguments on reason. Socrates wanted to demonstrate goodness and truth in his actions. He fundamentally believed that individuals should prove what they say by actions, through just means. Crito argued that he would use few bribes, which could be very easy to manage5. Socrates was very right in going against Critos arguments. Bribe is immoral and unjust means in society. According to Socrates, it is a great shame that people in society has unlimited capacity to do harm or good. The only thing that the public can do is to base its achievement on chance. The public never makes an individual’s foolish or wise6.
Crito argued that by remaining in prison, Socrates will be abandoning his children, as well as the entire upbringing. Furthermore, it will make the Socrates friends look cowards. Most of Critos arguments are right, convincing, and sensible. On the other hand, Socrates basic teaching is associated to justice, goodness, knowledge, as well as evil. Socrates believes the ultimate goal of life is building up people’s wisdom, through questioning and revealing ignorance.
Anagnostopoulos, Georgios. Socratic, Platonic, and Aristotelian Studies. California: Springer,
Hugh, Benson. A Companion to Plato. London: Blackwell, 2006.