In "The Cop and the Anthem," is Soapy a gentleman?  

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mwestwood | College Teacher | (Level 3) Distinguished Educator

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After Soapy enters a restaurant that caters to "large appetites and modest purses" where he is allowed to sit down despite having worn pants and shoes that denoted his poverty.  Having eaten a full meal, Soapy tells the waiter that he has no money, instructing him in imitation of clients of a much nicer restaurant,

"Now get busy and call a cop....And don't keep a gentleman waiting."

So, Soapy is not really a gentleman; he is simply mimicking the words of a man of a higher class. However, as the narrative continues, Soapy ironically proves to be more of a gentleman in reality. For, after he enters a church and hears the anthem that the organist plays, he is reminded of happier days.  Then, a "wonderful change in his soul" occurs and Soapy perceives the downward turn that his life has taken. So, he resolves to "pull himself" up again and redeem himself by resurrecting his old goals and become a better man, a gentle man of ambition and "immaculate thoughts" who is "somebody in the world." 


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