Now that I am looking back on Tom Robinson’s court case, I have seen what my decision has done to my family and I have heard what my friends and neighbors have to say about the ordeal. If I could go back in time, I would still make the decision to defend Tom Robinson. This decision is backed by many reasons of logic and my morals. Many decisions people make are decided on what suits themselves, they do not think of other people and how it may affect them or show them what is right and what is wrong.
I believe that defending Tom Robinson was the correct, moral action to take. If I did not take this case, I could never look at my children again (Lee 88). Many people say that I am a disgrace to the family for taking the case (Lee 83), however, I see it a little differently. In my eyes, I would be disgracing the family for not taking the case because it would not be just not to defend Tom Robinson since I knew that he was innocent.
Throughout the trial, I believed (and still do) that Mayella’s father, Bob Ewell, beat her (Lee 187). When I cross-examined Mayella, I tried to get her to admit to this, but she still insisted that Tom Robinson raped her (Lee 187-188). If a person would look at the evidence on hand, they would know that this was not the case. First of all, Tom’s left arm was crippled from being caught in a cotton gin (Lee 186). Considering the fact that she was bruised and beat on the right side of the face, this was not possibly an action from Tom. However, Bob Ewell was left handed, meaning that when he was hitting Mayella, he hit her along the right side of the face (Lee 177). Second of all, Tom was only trying to help Mayella with her chores around the house because no one else in the family would help her (Lee 191). Thirdly, why on this particular day, November 21st, were the children out of the house? Mayella told Tom that she had saved money for a whole year so she could treat them to ice cream (Lee 193). Also on that day, she asked him to come inside for the first time to fix the door hinges that did not need to be fixed (Lee 193). As stated by Tom, “She sorta jumped on meshe hugged meshe reached up an’ kissed me side of th’ face. She says she never kissed a grown man before an’ she might as well kiss a nigger.” (Lee194). Finally, why would somebody not call a doctor? When I asked Heck Tate this question, he replied, “Well I can tell you why I didn’t. It wasn’t necessary, Mr. Finch. She was mighty banged up. Something sho’ happened, it was obvious.” (Lee 167). In any case like this were there may be rape charges, a doctor should be called to clarify that the person had in fact been raped.
When this case was finished, I was walking down the street when Bob Ewell approached me and spit in my face while threatening me (Lee 217). On Halloween night, he went way too far, he tried to kill my children (Lee 261-262). When he threatened me, I could handle it, but my children are different. Even if he was not finished with me, I would never of thought he would go after my Jem and Scout (Lee 269). This attempt of murder scared me, but at least they escaped with a few minor injuries.
I believe that I made the right decision even though all of the terrible things that happened were a result from taking on the case. This case has made Jem and Scout stronger and has taught them to fight for what they believe in, even if it would bring hardships. In the end of this ordeal, Scout learned what I meant when I said that to really know somebody you have to walk in his or her shoes (Lee 279), which is a very important life lesson for anybody of any age. Jem and Scout also learned not to judge a person by his or her skin color, but by his or her heart.