According to Jeffrey R. DiLeo, free will is “the view that people have freedom of decision or choice without coercion between alternative courses of action.”(p.1040)When it comes to Artie and Judd in the movie Compulsion; the boys were free to commit the murder of Pauly Kessler. I believe this because I am taking the view point of a soft determinist; the actions that the boys committed were based on their choices, no body forced them to do something therefore they murdered by the choices of their free will.
Soft determinists believe that people are responsible for their actions, even though all actions have a cause that is predetermined if there is no external force making somebody do something, they have free will. People choose their actions based on their character, Arty and Judd thought they were so above everyone else that they could get away with murder and therefore they made a free decision to take someone else’s life. This is why they should be held responsible for their actions and be punished for their crime.
When we define free will we should use the perspective of the common person. Stace, a soft determinist says that the definition of free will is incorrect. He says that it “is not whether actions are determined by some cause, but rather what kind of cause determined them.”(714) By this he means that the boys my have been forced to commit the crime internally because of previous things and the way that they were raised, however, there was no external cause. No one held a gun to their heads and made them commit the crime, therefore they have free will.