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If a person today is asked to do something that he or she may not like to do and they say no, they may be looked down upon. Not only does this happen today, but it also was true in the early 1900's. It is just not fair when people stand up for what their mind feels is right, such as Atticus does in the novel To Kill A Mockingbird by Harper Lee, that they are looked down upon and harassed. Atticus tries to teach his children to stand up for what is right throughout the novel.One night Atticus was talking with Jem and said,'"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.'"1 Atticus taught and also practiced what he felt was right.
One night while Atticus was guarding the jailhouse where Tom Robinson was staying, a group of men confronted him about the whereabouts of Tom. One of the men said to Atticus,'"You know what we want…get aside from the door, Mr. Finch"' (162). Atticus could have just said, "ok, Tom is in there go get him," but he wanted to stand up for what he knew was right. That was telling them that he was there
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1 Harper Lee, To Kill a Mockingbird (Lippincott, 1960), p. 233.
and that he was not going to let the group of men get to Tom so they could kill him. Atticus stands up and says,'" You can turn around and go home again'" (162). This was just one of the many times that Atticus, Jem, and also Scout would run across people that felt differently than they did about discrimination and what they would do to stand up to it.
The mockingbird in the novel symbolizes innocence. Treating a person bad be