Explain Atticus's views on equality in To Kill a Mockingbird.

In To Kill a Mockingbird, Atticus views everyone as equal, regardless of race, gender, social class, or ethnicity. Atticus champions equality by exercising tolerance, sympathizing with others, and challenging Maycomb's prejudiced culture. He treats the poor Cunninghams with respect, considers Calpurnia an integral member of his family, and valiantly defends Tom Robinson in front of a prejudiced jury. Atticus does not judge others by their differences or opinions and treats people with the respect they deserve.

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In Harper Lee's classic novelTo Kill a Mockingbird, Atticus Finch is depicted as a morally upright, fair man who champions equality and practices the Golden Rule. Atticus views everyone as equal, regardless of race, gender, social status, or ethnicity. Atticus's actions and words reveal his views on...

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In Harper Lee's classic novel To Kill a Mockingbird, Atticus Finch is depicted as a morally upright, fair man who champions equality and practices the Golden Rule. Atticus views everyone as equal, regardless of race, gender, social status, or ethnicity. Atticus's actions and words reveal his views on equality, and he treats others the way he would want to be treated. Atticus sympathizes with Walter Cunningham's financial difficulties and goes out of his way to barter with Walter in exchange for his services. Atticus also treats Walter's son with respect when he comes over for lunch and reprimands Scout for speaking to him disparagingly. His willingness to exercise tolerance also reveals his views regarding equality. Atticus does not judge racist individuals like Mrs. Dubose and is quick to forgive Mr. Cunningham by telling his children that we all have "blind spots." Atticus even encourages his children to treat their reclusive neighbor with the respect he deserves by staying off Boo's property and honoring his privacy.

Unlike the majority of his prejudiced neighbors, Atticus does not discriminate against Black people and even risks his reputation by defending Tom Robinson. Atticus challenges his sister's prejudiced ideology by defending Calpurnia and even considers her an essential member of their family. The most prominent example of Atticus's views on equality takes place during his closing remarks toward the end of chapter 20. Atticus alludes to the Constitution and reminds the jury that everyone is considered equal in a United States court of law. He encourages them to exercise justice and judge the case without passion or prejudice.

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In Chapter 20, Atticus makes his closing defense speech in the trial of Tom Robinson. Atticus knows full well that Tom will be found guilty for no other reason than that he's a black man accused of raping a white woman. For most people in this deeply prejudiced society, that's enough to convict. But Atticus is different. In his closing argument he tries to persuade the jury that all the bad things that are traditionally said about black people apply equally to everyone else. Immorality knows no color; every single person in the courtroom—black or white—has done something bad in their life. Atticus is using a variant of Christ's injunction that only he who is without sin can cast the first stone. Indeed, Atticus explicitly invokes God's name in his final summing-up to the jury, trying to get them to at least consider the fact that Tom Robinson might not be guilty after all.

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Atticus is a fair, objective, and impartial mediator when it comes to people and their equality. He sees neither rich nor poor, black nor white. In the case of Tom Robinson, it is Atticus who tries to attempt getting all of Maycomb County to see that Tom is a person, nothing less, nothing more.

In addition, Atticus's treatment of other "lesser" characters in this novel leads the reader to conclude that he is totally balanced in his approach to humankind. Think for a moment of his conversation with Walter Cunningham at the Finch's dinner table. While Scout condemned Walter for "drowning" his food in molasses, Atticus simply accepted the practice, and continued conversing with Walter about topics as diverse as farming and agriculture.

Atticus Finch proves himself to be a reliable judge of human character through his colorblind approach to every character in this novel. 

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The amazing thing about Atticus' character is that he treats EVERYONE as an equal.  One of the first examples that we see Atticus treat others as equal is when he speaks to Walter (the son) Cunningham when he comes over in chapter 3 for lunch.  They speak like to men about crops.  He treats Walter like an equal by discussing what Walter is interested in.

In chapter 5, Atticus defends Boo (Arthur) Radley when he goes into a tirade at the children for trying to get Boo to come out.  He lectures that what Boo did was his own business, and if he wanted to come out, he would.  They were to leave him alone.  Atticus could have let the kids continue their games (like any of the other parents would have), but he stopped them, then and there.  Boo was a person, too, and what he did was his business.

Of course the most important character (who he desperately wants to make others believe is their equal) is Tom Robinson.  Atticus does everything he can to convince the jury that Mayella and Bob are lying.  He defends Tom at the jailhouse in front of a bunch of men with guns, too.  He wants others to see Tom as a man, an equal, but because he's black in this time period, the town would never see Tom in that light.  But Atticus made them all think about it.  He was the only one who could keep a jury out that long.  Maudie mentions that to the kids after the verdict.  He was "making a baby step" in the right direction.

 

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