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Which characters in To Kill a Mockingbird feel like justice was served when Tom...

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rubyguy | Student, Grade 9 | eNotes Newbie

Posted July 23, 2011 at 7:54 AM via web

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Which characters in To Kill a Mockingbird feel like justice was served when Tom Robinson was found guilty?

I need to know if Scout, Jem, Atticus, Dill, Calpurnia, Miss Maudie, Aunt Alexandra, Miss Stephanie, Tom Robinson, Mayella Ewell, Bob Ewell, Mrs. Dubose, Mr. Underwood, Heck Tate, Boo Radley, and Mr. Raymond think justice was served when Tom was found guilty. Thanks soooo much to anyone who answers!!!! :)

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bullgatortail | High School Teacher | (Level 1) Distinguished Educator

Posted July 23, 2011 at 8:42 AM (Answer #1)

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Most of Atticus' friends and supporters obviously were not happy with the jury's verdict. Scout and Jem were unhappy with the decision, and Jem particularly felt that Atticus had proved his case. We can assume that Dill felt Tom was innocent after he left the courtroom in tears during the prosecutor's questioning. Miss Maudie made her feelings known when she told the children that Atticus was not alone in his support of Tom. Calpurnia, like the rest of Maycomb's black population, believed Tom to be innocent. Aunt Alexandra supported her brother and despised Bob Ewell, though it is not clear whether she believed Tom to be innocent. The newspaper editor, Mr. Underwood, clearly believed that Tom's death was unjustified through his editorial that compared it with the "senseless slaughter of songbirds." Dolphus Raymond refused to attend the trial, though he likely supported Tom. Sheriff Heck Tate may not have believed Tom innocent in the beginning, but he understood later that Bob Ewell's death was a fitting end since Ewell had caused Tom's death.

We don't know how Boo felt about Tom's guilty verdict, and Mrs. Dubose was dead (though she obviously thought Atticus was wrong to defend Tom). It's not clear where Miss Stephanie stood on this matter. We also don't know Mayella's reaction; however, her conscience could not have been a clear one, since she knew that Tom had not committed the acts of which he was accused. Her testimony was clearly made due to her fear of her own father. Bob clearly hated all black men and women, and he must have been greatly satisfied at the verdict--though not at how Atticus disgraced him on the stand. As for Tom, he chose suicide-by-cop rather than remain imprisoned for a crime he did not commit.

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jmqualls | High School Teacher | Honors

Posted July 23, 2011 at 11:38 AM (Answer #3)

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Tom Ewell did for sure.  Mayella Ewell may have said she did, but if she had any conscience at all, she really did not believe the verdict was right.  I do not think any of the others agreed, and some probably did not care.

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