Is the punishment Miss Strangeworth receives at the end of the story appropriate?

The punishment that Miss Strangeworth receives at the end of the story could be viewed as appropriate because it is aimed directly at her roses, the thing she cares for most in the world. This echoes the damage that she caused to other residents in the town.

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Miss Strangeworth spends her energies in tearing down others. She believes herself to be of the highest character, almost a type of nobility for their small town. Thus, she also believes that she is justified in passing along hurtful information, whether the information itself is true or not. She believes that evil must be rooted out, and by keeping everyone suspicious and on guard, she facilitates this effort.

Instead of confronting people directly, Miss Strangeworth works in secret. She doesn't write her letters on the stationery bearing her name and never signs her letters, either. She walks to the post office alone and includes no return address. In every way, Miss Strangeworth attempts to make certain that her identity cannot be discovered as she ruins lives around town. Sending out these letters is an act that she knows is "harsh," but she believes that exposing the wickedness of the town is worth it.

I'd say the punishment is appropriate for a couple of reasons. First, the actions...

(The entire section contains 5 answers and 1085 words.)

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