Harper Lee shows the racist social values that most of the inhabitants of Maycomb County follow are one of the factors that cause Atticus Finch’s defense to fail. In Maycomb, hating black people is a never-ending trend. Even though almost everyone follows it, Atticus does not. He is one of the only characters in the novel that has good social values and does not judge one by his or her skin colour. Although he has a feeling that he is not going to win the case, he still does the right thing by
If he had an impartial jury, he would have been a free man. However, none of the jurors believed that Tom was telling the truth. They were raised to hate all black people. White people have been hurting and killing black people for centuries because of hatred. Therefore, the black community in Maycomb was crippled with fear.
When Tom was accused of rape, this was the most racist point in the book to me. The people of Maycomb automatically labeled him as guilty. If I were in his position I would have wanted to fight back. Atticus Finch, a local lawyer and one of the main characters, is appointed as Tom’s lawyer. He is almost completely shunned from the town because he is trying to help a black man accused of rape.
The article I chose to discuss an author’s subjectivity is about the Trayvon Martin case. Trayvon Martin was a young Black man who was shot to death by George Zimmerman. The article states the verdict in the case, which was that Mr. George Zimmerman was acquitted of murder. In the article, I can sense the anger and hostility of the writer. He also displays a sense of frustration when he writes that “the verdict, which should have been shocking, was delivered with the inevitability that Black Americans know too well when criminal law announces that they are worth less than other Americans” (Yankah, 2013, p.A23).
Prejudice is a preconceived opinion not based on reason or experience. Sometimes prejudice is a destructive force in society. In To Kill A Mockingbird by Harper Lee, prejudice is shown in many ways. Prejudice was shown when Atticus was defending the jail, a group of men came to kill Tom and also when Scout was getting teased at school by other kids because her dad was taking Tom’s case. Furthermore, when Tom Robinson was accused of being guilty even though he was not, and died because of it.
Most of the people of Maycomb were unjust and ignorant when it came to the most basic rights of the African Americans. "Mockingbirds don't do one thing but make music for us to enjoy,…Shoot all the blue jays you want, if you can hit them, but remember it's a sin to kill a mockingbird.”(Page 98 Atticus) This citation is the focal point of the novel. Tom Robinson, a black man who did no wrong, as all evidence proved yet he was still found guilty. Atticus Finch was one of a few who believed in ‘justice for all’. Atticus was mocked and shunned for defending a black man yet he never retaliated.
So far, one of the major plots seems to be about his choice to defend a black man, Tom Robinson, in court. During this era, the residents of Maycomb county and the world in general were still extremely racist towards African Americans. They were considered slaves and not on the same level as normal people. The people who were poorer than the black people (for example: the Erwells) were even respected more. Because of this racism and prejudice, the decision of Atticus’ to defend this man (who would certainly be killed without a lawyer because he is black and the accuser is white) is widely discussed in the town.
It is a sin to kill the innocent and helpful mockingbird. But around the time of the Great Depression, important morals like that one seem to have been tossed aside. At that time, when a black man went to court, it didn’t matter whether he was guilty or innocent. The fact that he was a colored man made him the target for unjustified accusation. Innocent human beings have been killed for nothing but the crime of being different.
It is quite obvious that Robinson was not guilty, but he is still convicted anyway. Many racist actions lead up to the trial, actually encompass the trial, and these same actions are seen after the trial. She is racist enough to think that because Atticus is defending an African American, someone that he thinks is not guilty; it will harm her deep southern roots. This skirmish
Similarly in To Kill a Mockingbird by Harper Lee, Tom Robinson is convicted and sentenced to death for the rape of a white woman without any substantial evidence. The only reason he is convicted is because he is a black man fighting against a white man in a court with a prejudiced jury. The theme of prejudice and discrimination is evident in both of these cases because the defendants were charged and convicted merely because they were deemed to be “different” by their close minded societies, questionable evidence from prejudiced sources was used during their trials and because the accusers knew that all those charged could easily be used as scapegoats. The defendants in both of the cases were chosen as suspects because they were deemed to be different by their close minded societies. In the case of the West Memphis Three, the prime suspect in the murder of the young boys, Damian Echols stated, “I wore black and was rumoured to worship Satan, and I was the perfect target when the police ran out of leads” (A Most Heinous Crime Fiona Steel.2003 <http://www.crimelibrary.com/notoriousmurders/famous/memphis/suspect_4.html>).