“Good by mr wigin tell them im strong tell them im a man”(234). Jefferson was at the wrong place at the wrong time when two other black men tried to rob a white man’s liquor store. After the death of these men, instead of calling 911 he steals some money out the register and a bottle of wine off shelf. After Jefferson has been sentenced to death by execution, his godmother, Miss Emma, requests that Grant Wiggins teaches him to be a man before he dies instead of allowing him to die as a hog-which is what Jefferson’s defense attorney refers to him as. Although Grant initially doesn’t want to help Jefferson, he gradually changes throughout this book and accomplishes his goal of transforming him into a man.
Jefferson, who was supposed to be meeting up with a friend to go fishing, ended up being convicted of murder. He was too ignorant to know that it was a bad idea to get into the vehicle with them and and ended up being accused of murder. Jefferson’s defense attorney defends him by calling him a hog. He says that Jefferson should not have been convicted of anything but stupidity. He refers to Jefferson as a hog. This word-
Bush 2 hog- affects Miss Emma terribly and hurts her heart. She feels that Jefferson must survive his situation as a man in order to prove his title. This situation with Jefferson affects each of these characters differently although in the same way. The entire black community is devastated by his condition. Grant feels sorry for Jefferson but, at the same time feels that it was Jefferson’s fault and that he should have nothing to do with it. Tante Lou is just as hurt as Miss Emma and feels that it’s Grant’s priority to take care of Jefferson and, by any means, make Miss Emma happy. The white people in town, however, feel that Jefferson is receiving what he deserves and Grant should have no interferences in what goes on with Jefferson.