In chapter ten, the children are playing with their air rifles when Atticus teaches Scout and Jem an important moral lesson by saying,
Shoot all the bluejays you want, if you can hit ‘em, but remember it’s a sin to kill a mockingbird. (Lee, 93)
This lesson can be metaphorically applied to teach Jem and Scout the importance of protecting innocent, defenseless beings. Atticus also acts as a positive role model for his children by protecting Tom Robinson from a lynch mob before the controversial trial.
After witnessing racial injustice firsthand, Jem complains about the corrupt, racist jury to his father. Atticus then teaches his children a lesson on honesty by telling them,
As you grow older, you’ll see white men cheat black men every day of your life, but let me tell you something and don’t you forget it— whenever a white man does that to a black man, no matter who he is, how rich he is, or how fine a family he comes from, that white man is trash. (Lee, 224)
Atticus is essentially...
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