Discrimination in the Worst Case

850 Words4 Pages
When the Constitution was created the writers believed that all men should be created equal. Not until almost a hundred years later were African Americans freed from slavery. Even after they had been granted citizenship, African Americans were treated unfairly and unequally. Roughly, another hundred years later, African Americans were still blamed for people's problems and were persecuted. In the Southern United States, people were still unwilling to fully accept African Americans in their society and this shows in "To Kill A Mockingbird" because of the attitudes portrayed during Tom Robinson’s trial. The trial was decided by a jury that was racist and unwilling to accept things have changed; they were unwilling to blame a white man for a crime, and this still happens today. This was unfair and unjust, even as an eight year old, Scout Finch comes to understand this (Lee 249-50). Juries in trials are allowed to have their own opinions, but they are meant to keep an open mind as well as not have any predetermined thoughts or ideas on the defendant or plaintiff. If they do have predetermined thoughts, or have any ideals or actions previously against any people like the defendant, they are most times excused by either lawyer or the judge. At this time in To Kill A Mockingbird, the year 1935, many people in the rural south held a grudge and discriminated against African Americans. Only the younger generation truly began accepting black and mixed people as exactly that: people and Americans. Atticus Finch, the father of Jeremy “Jem” and Jean “Scout”, teaches his children, however, not to discriminate and even tells his son, “If you had been on that jury, son, and eleven other boys like you, Tom would be a free man,” (Lee 223). This only... ... middle of paper ... ... Nonetheless in a court room? The people of America may have their own views but when someone’s life is being determined equality and open mindedness should be qualities the jury and the other decision makers have. Works Cited Lee, Harper. To Kill a Mockingbird. New York, NY: Warner Books Inc., 1982. Print. Mauer, Marc & Ryan S. King. “Uneven Justice: State Rates of Incarceration By Race and Ethnicity” The Sentencing Project [Washington, D.C.) 2007. Web. 29 April. 2014. http://www.sentencingproject.org/doc/publications/rd_stateratesofincbyraceandethnicity.pdf Rosenbaum, Candy. “A Typical Day of Jury Duty” The Candy Project October 2005. Web. 29 April. 2014. http://projectcandy.blogspot.com/2005/10/typical-day-of-jury-duty.html Trueman, Chris. Education and Civil Rights. 2003. Web. 28 April. 2014. http://www.historylearningsite.co.uk/civil_rights_education.htm
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