To Kill A Mockingbird Power Essay Example

Pretend you are in a small town in Newcomb, Alabama in the 1930’s. Segregation is still a thing and a rumor is going around that a black man beat and raped a white girl. There is going to be a court hearing about it soon. The main character is Scout. She goes through the story growing up and maturing with her family. She witnesses a court case that her father was an attorney for where a man is wrongly accused and convicted. Scout and her brother are attacked by the victim’s father, but are saved by someone they feared. In the end, they learn that you shouldn’t be afraid of people based on rumors. The theme of To Kill A Mockingbird by Harper Lee is that if someone tries to exploit their power, nothing good will come from it because it can cause them to get hurt when it could’ve been avoided, it’s hard to get away with, and it won’t end well for them in the end. Once the audience has read what I will cover in this essay, I can begin with my first topic.

Abusing your power can cause you to get hurt when that could’ve been avoided. Mayella was beat by her father. She was beat on the right side. She told the jury that Tom Robinson did it, but his left arm was crippled.  Her father was left-handed, though. ““You’re left-handed, Mr. Ewell,” said Judge Taylor” (161). Mayella was beat by her father after she tried to use the power she has as a white woman over Tom, an African American. This shows how when she tried to abuse her power, she got hurt. Now that I’ve explained how if you abuse your power, you could get hurt, we can switch to my second topic.

Trying to exploit your power is hard to get away with. Heck Tate threatened Bob Ewell with assault after he found out Helen came the long way to work every day. “I know every last one of you’s in there a-layin’ on the floor! Now hear me, Bob Ewell: if I hear one more peep outa my girl Helen about not bein’ able to walk this road I’ll have you in jail before sundown!” (288). Bob Ewell tried to use his power over Tom’s wife but her employer threatened him with assault and harassment charges. When he got caught doing this, he also got caught doing other things, such as skipping work out of laziness and getting fired. It’s not easy to get away with these kinds of things and Ewell is a good example of that. It’s important to know that if you try to exploit your power, you may fail because it’s hard to get away with, but my third topic is also very important.

Exploiting your power will not end well for you in the end. Boo Radley killed Ewell while protecting the children. Heck Tate covered up Boo’s crime because it would be like killing a mockingbird. “Bob Ewell’s lyin’ on the ground under that tree down yonder with a kitchen knife stuck up under his ribs. He’s dead, Mr. Finch.” (244). Bob Ewell used the power he has over the children to attack them. He ended up getting killed by Boo Radley, who was protecting the kids. My point stands because with Ewell, it clearly didn’t end well. Now that the audience understands that if you exploit your power, it won’t end well for you, we can move onto the conclusion.

Power is something that everyone has, but it’s different for everyone. There are many ways to use your power, but you should always use it for good. To Kill a Mockingbird by Harper Lee shows how trying to abuse the power you have can cause you to get hurt, is hard to get away with, and how it won’t end well for you in the end. While many people do use their power for bad, lots don’t. The main characters, such as Scout and Jem, use the power they have for good. In the end, the story shows how many of the characters use their power, some for good and some for evil. 

Works Cited

Lee, Harper. To Kill a Mockingbird. 1960.


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