What did Jem unexpectedly do at Mrs. Dubose's and why did he do it?

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When passing Mrs. Dubose house, Jem grabs Scout's baton and attacks her camelia bushes chopping off the top of every bush.  He does this because Mrs. Dubose had been making comments about Atticus defending Tom Robinson and Jem got to a point where he couldn't take it anymore so he took his anger out on her flowers.

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