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Socialising is a very complicated process, for we often make unjustified assumptions that lead to misunderstandings or even worst, it might even cause the innocents to suffer. In “To Kill a Mocking Bird,” it was demonstrated a number of times, both in court and in every day life, often caused by people’s limited observations skills causing misjudgements; Jem and Scout made that mistake, thinking his dad is “old and feeble” and maybe useless but in reality he is actually a great shooter who doesn’t like to boast about his talents. I truly admire the Atticus’s personality, he was not thought highly by his town folks because he was humble and was not bind by the “fashion” in town. Harper Lee had uncovered the truth of human nature; because of Atticus’s appearance and modesty, he was not justified fairly.
Just like the old saying goes, “Don’t judge a book by its cover”, sadly, this is a philosophy that many cannot achieve. Inessential factors including bias, appearance racial hatred and so for always get in the way of justification, twisting the fact into the justifier’s favor and that is when injustice happen. In To Kill a Mockingbird, this had happened a number of time, even children had inherited this bad vile trait, including the main characters- Jem and Scout. In chapter 10, it was demonstrated when they were justifying Atticus on p.98:
“Our father didn’t do anything. He worked in an office, not in a drugstore. Atticus
did not drive a dump truck for the county, he was not the sheriff, he did not farm,
work in a garage, or do anything that could possibly arouse the admiration of anyone.
Besides that, he wore glasses.”
From the above description, we can tell that Jem and Scout were judging Atticus with their measures for an admirable person. They were counting what Atticus was not instead of what he could do, in addition, they didn’t know Atticus well enough to be able to make a judgment about him and they refused to listen to what others have to say about Atticus, in this case, it’s Miss Maudi. Jem and Scout were affected by prejudice and judged Atticus only based on his appearance and their own measures.
Jem and Scout always thought his father-Atticus was “weak and feeble” only because he was different from the rest of the fathers in town; he was not very active like the other fathers were due to his old age. Jem was never satisfied with Atticus, because to him, he was not a exciting father he could be proud of, until he discovered Atticus’ outstanding shooting skill. Jem and Scout always thought they knew everything about Atticus until that incident, Scout was quite young so she could not understand it, whiled Jem had finally understand Atticus’ wisdom of modesty and displayed his maturity by stopping Scout from bragging about Atticus in front of their friends and said this interesting quote.
“Atticus is a gentleman, just like me.” (Chapter 10 p.109)
Jem and Scout was always disappointed their father because Atticus is different from the others but his opinion for him had gradually changed as he matured, and as it did, he finally came to an understanding of the real values a gentleman should posses.
Atticus was a model father for his children and a great educator; he had earning respects from his fellow town folks, the readers and gradually, his children. He had always been thought as “weak and feeble” by his own children, but it changed right after his children discovered his nick name “One shot Finch”, their perspective for him has immediately changed. We could not completely blame his children for misjudging him; Atticus had hid his talents well with to his humble personality. I truly admire Atticus’s great personality: he was a true gentleman and showed great wisdom and humbleness. Even though his talent was discovered by his children, he still refused to brag about it, this was shown in shown in chapter 10 p. 108 when Mr. Tate spoke to Jem
“‘What’s the matter with you, boy, can’t you talk?’ said
Mr. Tate grinning at ‘Didn’t you know your daddy’s…’
‘Hush, Heck,’ said Atticus.'”
Atticus even stopped others from praising him, plus he still chose to keep his principles after he just prevented his neighbors from being attacked by a mad dog. Atticus was a great model for Jem and he greatly contributed to Jem’s grown in maturity.
“To Kill a Mockingbird” had a timeless topic; similar versions of this story had appeared again and again in human history, where innocents almost always suffer. Harper Lee had exposed the ugly truth of human nature and the fact that injustice exists in this society often caused by some people’s ignorance or selfishness. Jem and Scout started of misjudging Atticus and fortunately, it was all cleared up after the incident with Jem finally understood the values of a gentleman. Jem and Scout were lucky to have Atticus as a father, he was a great educator and he tried his hardest to make sure they are safe, safe from the weaknesses in human nature. To Kill a Mockingbird was a well-written narrative; it flawlessly uncovered a variety of human nature- the finest of humanity as well as ugly human natures.