Surratt’s lawyer, Frederick Aiken, accused the Secretary of War, Edwin Stanton, of seeking vengeance in Mrs. Surratt’s trial, not justice. What is the difference between vengeance and justice? Do you agree with Aiken’s claim?
Vengeance is the taking of revenge and, in this case, it would have been the desire to prosecute and hang anyone even slightly related to Lincoln’s assassination regardless of how truly involved they were. Justice, on the other hand, is the proper execution of the laws of the country/state/domain; in this case it would have been the proper consideration of Mary Surratt’s case without the biases brought about by the Lincoln Assassination.
However, I do not agree with Aiken’s claim. At the time of the trial, Aiken was very green and unprepared to defend his client. As such, his attempts to refute the prosecution’s testimony actually helped them. So I’d say that it was more his fault that everything went down the drain, although a general desire for vengeance was definitely present in America back then.