I think that the message Atticus gives the public in To Kill a Mockingbird is that justice and fairness do not have a color line, and that a man of integrity will not bow to society when it is wrong. Atticus is the one character in the book who consistently shows, courage, integrity and compassion. He not only agrees to defend Tom Robinson but he defend his to the best of his ability despite the consequences to himself and his family. This displays great courage and integrity. However he also displays compassion by not showing bitterness on losing the case, but being hopeful that things might change soon. He also shows compassion and integrity in his dealings with Mrs.Dubose, Mr. Cunningham, Boo Radley and he even shows compassion for Bob Ewing. The enotes section on character quotes a critic saying that Atticus is a picture of a "just and equitable southern liberal," However, you couls also say that he is the perfect example of a true southern Christian.