A Crime Of Compassion
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When an individual is willing to grow up, sooner or later, that person will experience many adversities that at times might take them by surprise, and cause them to question their ethical morals. Beverly Mitchell once stated, “Part of growing up is just taking what you learn from that and not taking it to heart.”These words of Beverly are meaningful because growing up is about assimilating your own experiences and knowledge you have gone through in life in order to make a stronger self for the future. In the novel “To Kill A Mockingbird” displays the story of Tom who is a black man that was accused of sexually abusing a young women named Mayella Ewell. He is arrested and is later convicted of the crime and is sent to jail. Later on Scout and Jem find out that Tom was an innocent man and was later shot dead by the police. This leads to Bob Ewell, the true criminal shot dead by the police. Triggering him to go after Scout and Jem out of hate towards Atticus. As they were being attacked Boo Radley came to their rescue but ended up stabbing Mr. Ewell. Scout and Jem come to realize that Boo Radley is a person and not just a strange man.They realized after the attempt of Mr. Ewell trying to kill them as they were heading back home from the play. As a result, Jem got hurt and Scout was saved due to the ham costume she was wearing. Everything happened so fast according to Scout and wasn’t able to justify if Jem killed Mr. Ewell as Atticus thought . Mr. Heck Tate proposed to Atticus and stated Mr.Ewell was dead under the tree and claimed he stabbed himself. However, Mr. Tate knows another fact. He knows Boo Radley was the one who stabbed him.In my belief, I believe Heck Tate was justified in covering over Boo Radley stabbing Mr.Ewell.
Heck Tate defending Boo Radley connects with Tom Robinson’s case because in both we can see the similarity between them. For instance, Tom and Boo are both referred as “mockingbirds” who have been injured or destroyed through contact with evil that’s why it’s a sin to kill a mockingbird. Both of them them can be seen as Mockingbirds because they don’t harm others instead they only want to bring a little bit of brightness/ happiness into the dark harsh world they live in . For example, Boo saving Jem and Scout and Tom helping out Mayella out of kindness and not of other intentions but even if he did, he wouldn’t be capable to do so as stated by him”I can’t use my left hand at all. I got it caught in a cotton gin when I was twelve years old. All my muscles were tore loose.” As stated by Miss Maudie “ shoot all the bluejays you want, if you can hit’em, but remember it’s a sin to kill a mockingbird”. These words identifies how bluejays are not important since they don’t do much goodness but rather badness referring them as Mr. Ewell and society. Mockingbirds are illustrated innocent and harmless because they only sing to make peoples days better. Also, Scout once stated “ Well, it’d be sort of like shootin’ a mockingbird wouldn’t it ?”This demonstrates that if the police ends up putting Boo in jail for killing Bob Ewell it will be like killing a mockingbird because Boo was only trying to save Scout and Jem. Having a person always watching your back in case you’re in trouble should always be grateful because that person will most likely lose something order to help you forsas in Boo’s shoes, he lost his innocence.
It’s depressing to see that the world Tom and Boo lived in the past is still the same as if no time has passed and people are still being discriminated by their aspects or by their actions. After Mr. Ewell tried to kill two innocent souls : Jem and Scout , Boo Radley came to the rescue as the “mockingbird” he is by heart. Atticus couldn’t believe the fact that Mr. Ewell attempted to murder children out of vengeance because he thought Bob Ewell would’ve come to him, it never came to his mind he would harm his kids. As stated by Atticus “He was out of his mind,” said Atticus “Don’t like to contradict you, Mr. Finch – wasn’t crazy -mean as hell. Low down skunk with enough liquor in him to make him brave enough to kill children. He’d never have met you face to face” (308). This demonstrates when in a sober state someone is not brave enough to commit a sin as in a drunken state. This also reveals that Bob Ewell was a coward and needed to drink in order to have the courage to harm Jem and Scout.Tate once have said “ let the dead bury the dead this time Mr. Finch Let the dead bury the dead (317)”. This is significant to know because just like how easy Mr. Ewell blamed Tom of a crime he never committed just because of their different appearance, they each have different amounts of trust in their society.Mr. Ewell paid for his sins against Tom who never harmed a single person resulting in his death and the truth never coming out to the world in order to save the only living mockingbird left, Boo Radley. Lee demonstrates that justice and compassion reach beyond the boundary of color and human prejudices. For one who has committed a crime, they should pay for what they did especially if it cost an innocent individuals life like Tom Robinson.
However, others may state otherwise: it is injustice of Heck Tate and Atticus in hiding the truth of Mr.Ewell’s death.It’s understandable that it’s wrong to commit a crime and run away from it but sometimes in life we have to lie for the better. As Mr.Tate tries to convince Mr. Finch that Jem did not stab Mr.Ewell but that Bob stabbed himself and they should never say the truth of his death in order to protect Boo he states,“Let the dead bury the dead this time Mr. Finch let the dead bury the dead”. These words were recited in the Bible.These words are significant because it’s justifing to let Tom Robinson “bury” Mr. Ewell as an act of justice. In this way Boo Radley’s “shy ways” won’t be exposed to the gossip and to the cruel society. Also,that the town can put the case of Tom Robinson behind of their lives as all the injustice attached to it will finally end. Either dead or alive they will take care of eachother and will go their own separate ways living.Otherwise, it will be like killing a mockingbird to bring Radley to court. Understanding the wisdom of Mr. Tate, Atticus agrees the decision of Heck Tate.
In all of this , justice is seen when Heck Tate makes the decision of covering up the death of Bob Ewell. As he did what he did he saved the last mockingbird left in Maycomb. He saved Boo Radley because he regretted how he wasn’t able to save Tom from the cruel society as he himself was also blinded in judgement not seeing the truth and the innocence of Tom during his case.