Kill a Mockingbird the Issue Term Paper

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Robinson being black and the alleged victim of the rape being a white woman. Finch then states that "I have nothing but pity... For the chief witness whose evidence has been called into serious question... The defendant is not guilty, but somebody in this courtroom is" (Lee, 1988, 231). What Finch is attempting to say is that the true guilt lies on the white woman who has accused Mr. Robinson of raping her, an accusation that is false. However, Finch then relates that "She has committed no crime" (Lee, 1988, 231), due to the fact that the statements of a white woman against those of a black man are always taken as truth by white southern society.

But then Finch throws a legal lasso over the court by declaring that the woman "must put Tom Robinson away from her. Tom Robinson was her daily reminder of what she did... She tempted a Negro. She was white, and she tempted a Negro.
She did something that in our society is unspeakable: she kissed a black man" (Lee, 1988, 231). Certainly, in 1960, such an act by a white woman was considered as "unspeakable" and horrifying, yet because of southern society, Mr. Robinson was denied his right to justice for a crime he did not commit. One important statement by Finch sums up the entire problem -- "the evil assumption, that all Negroes lie, that all... are basically immoral... that all are not to be trusted around our women... " (Lee, 1988, 232). Thus, it appears that justice in the South of the 1960's was not designed for black Americans but only for white Americans and that prejudice, hatred and bigotry could be found everywhere, even in a court of law, where all Americans are suppose to receive fair and equal treatment under the law.


Cooper, Michael. (2005). "To Kill a Mockingbird -- a Book Review."

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