There are many quotes throughout the novel To Kill a Mockingbird that identify the prominent prejudice throughout the community of Maycomb, Alabama. The community of Maycomb is highly prejudiced against African Americans. According to the Merriam-Webster dictionary, prejudice is defined as an adverse opinion or leaning formed without just grounds or before sufficient knowledge. White community members harbor negative feelings towards black people and believe they are inferior. In 1930's Alabama, Jim Crow laws were enacted to discriminate against black people. Throughout the trial, Bob and Mayella Ewell have confidence that the jury will take their word over Tom Robinson's because they are white. During Atticus' closing remarks, he calls attention to the prejudice in the community by saying,
"The witnesses for the state, with the exception of the sheriff of Maycomb County, have presented themselves to you gentlemen, to this court, in the cynical confidence that their testimony would not be doubted, confident that you gentlemen would go along with them on the assumption---the evil assumption---that all Negroes lie, that all Negroes are basically immoral beings, that all Negro men are not to be trusted around our women, an assumption one associates with minds of their caliber." (Lee 273)
Atticus urges the jury to cast away their prejudice and judge Tom Robinson's case void of "evil assumptions." The majority of Maycomb's community members believe that black people are inherently evil. This idea is prejudice because there is no sufficient evidence or knowledge that confirms this belief. Unfortunately, Tom Robinson is found guilty by the racist Maycomb jury members.