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A Father's Touch in To Kill a Mockingbird Essay


The bountiful love between a parent and a child is very unique and special. It is as if there were a world-wide pact, that all of man acquiesced to always love their children and show them compassion all their lives. Parents show their children they love them day by day, endlessly, in many ways. Atticus Finch raises his children with the same type of love, if not more, and in doing so, he is seen as a hero. In To Kill A Mockingbird, by Harper Lee, Atticus Finch provides his children with an education and allows them to develop their own personalities by giving them more freedom than the average child.

Early in the novel we learn that Atticus does not approve of guns. He believes that guns do not make men brave and that the children's fascination with guns is inappropriate. To prove his point, he sends Jem to read for Mrs. Dubose who struggles to beat her morphine addiction before she dies. He wants to show his son one shows true bravery "when you know you're licked before you begin but you begin anyway and you see it through no matter what" (Harper Lee 121). Atticus also role models his sense of bravery by refusing to carry a gun to protect Tom Robinson from angry farmers and refusing to carry a gun to protect himself from Bob Ewell. Bravery runs deeper than the decision to carry a gun. Atticus shows bravery when he takes Tom's case despite knowing that his town would turn against him and his children. Jem shows bravery when he, scout, and Dill follow Atticus to the jailhouse and Jem refuses to leave his father's side during the showdown with farmers.

Atticus Finch is a typical man, however, as a parent Atticus proves to diverge from the main swing of Maycomb society. Few of Maycomb is full of prejudice people and dont care about anybody but themselves. Atticus knows that defending a negro man will put him in an awkward situation with the towns people. Even though everyone has something to gossip about, Atticus holds back and lets them say whatever they want because he knows what is right from wrong and doesnt care what people think. It becomes apparent that Atticus Finch is extremely well respected and in is a man of extreme integrity in Maycomb by the majority of its residents. If someone expresses a dislike towards him he will still try to do his best to love everybody (Harper Lee 73).

Respect is something you earn by being a good person or doing something admirable. All of the citizens of Maycomb look up to Atticus and see him as a respectable person. Atticus is the character in the novel that has the most respect. He is a caring, loving father, the only member of Maycomb who will actually defend a negro, and he always displays respect for other people. Atticus is a great leader of his family, teaching his children morals and life lessons. He makes them better people by showing them how to deal with the trial and people making fun of them. "You never really understand a person until you climb into his skin and walk around in it (Harper Lee 64). This quote shows that Atticus wants his children to get along with people, and so other people will respect them for whom they are. He makes it a common practice to live his life as he would like his children to live theirs, and thus displays the attributes of an honest, respectable, and kind man. Throughout the trial process, Atticus shows Jem and Scout that true courage is standing up for what you believe in and that all human beings, despite their race, deserve respect.

To Kill a Mockingbird is a novel, which forced me to think why the citizens of Maycomb acted in a derogatory way towards normal human beings. Atticus despises the segregation of whites from blacks and strives to adapt peoples opinions of them. Due to this, Atticus deserves to be regarded as heroic. He fought in a hopeless struggle with sincerity for what he believed in, even though he knew he wouldnt win. He describes courage as knowing your licked before you begin but you begin anyway and you see it through no matter what, and whilst doing this, he hopefully changed peoples opinions of the black community.

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