This is the last straw, Atticus, Aunt Alexandra said. Depends on how you look at it, he said. What was one Negro, more or less, among two hundred of ’em? He wasn’t Tom to them, he was an escaping prisoner. Atticus leaned against the refrigerator, pushed up his glasses, and rubbed his eyes. We had such a good chance, he said. I told him what I thought, but I couldn’t in truth say that we had more than a good chance. I guess Tom was tired of white men’s chances and preferred to take his own.
— Не трябва винаги да показваш всичко, което знаеш. Такова нещо не подхожда за жени… и после, хората не обичат, когато някой е по-умен от тях. Дразнят се. Ти никого не можеш да промениш, като му приказваш правилно. Хората трябва сами да имат желание да учат, а когато нямат желание, нищо не може да се направи, освен да си мълчиш и да приказваш като тях.
Avery said it was written on the Rosetta Stone that when children disobeyed their parents, smoked cigarettes and made war on each other, the seasons would change: Jem and I were burdened with the guilt of contributing to the aberrations of nature, thereby causing unhappiness to our neighbours and discomfort to ourselves.
When I pointed to him his palms slipped slightly, leaving greasy sweat streaks on the wall, and he hooked his thumbs in his belt. A strange small spasm shook him, as if he heard fingernails scrape slate, but as I gazed at him in wonder the tension slowly drained from his face. His lips parted into a timid smile, and our neighbor’s image blurred with my sudden tears. Hey, Boo, I said.
you saw something come between them and reason. You saw the same thing that night in front of the jail. When that crew went away, they didn’t go as reasonable men, they went because we were there. There’s something in our world that makes men lose their heads—they couldn’t be fair if they tried. In our courts, when it’s a white man’s word against a black man’s, the white man always wins.
Well, most folks seem to think they’re right and you’re wrong. . . . They’re certainly entitled to think that, and they’re entitled to full respect for their opinions, said Atticus, but before I can live with other folks I’ve got to live with myself. The one thing that doesn’t abide by majority rule is a person’s conscience.
The remainder of my schooldays were no more auspicious than the first. Indeed, they were an endless Project that slowly evolved into a Unit, in which miles of construction paper and wax crayon were expended by the State of Alabama in its well-meaning but fruitless efforts to teach me Group Dynamics.