Have you ever wanted to do something for someone that nobody else wanted to
due? That is exactly what Atticus Finch does for Tom Robinson in Harper Lee’s novel
To Kill a Mockingbird.
Atticus stands up in front of the racist town Maycomb and the
Jury. Atticus tries to convince the jury that Tom did not rape Mayella Ewell, and that he
is innocent. Atticus utilizes Aristotle’s three persuasive appeals. He does this in his
powerful speech targeting Maycomb’s values of religion, tradition and patriotism.
Maycomb highly represents a true respect for religion. In Atticus's speech he gets
the audience to feel guilty about accusing an innocent man of rape and reflect on what
God would want them to do. Also, he's trying to get them to rethink what they are doing.
Religion and worshiping God is a main value in Maycomb.An example of this is when
Atticus was just about to shoot Tim Johnson the crazy dog. Calpurnia and the kids were
watching him when “....Calpurnia murmured ‘sweet Jesus help him” (127)
Correspondingly in Atticus’s speech he bring up the value of religion knowing that
Maycomb residents value religion. Atticus recognises religion in the speech to remind
them all that God would not be happy if they encouraged sending an innocent man to
jail. Atticus states “ in the name of God do your duty” (275) Atticus tries to make the jury
and residents in the courtroom reconsider what God would would think of their sins. He
tries to make them feel guilty and bad for Tom. Atticus tries to pull at their heartstrings
and pull their emotions out.
Another value of Maycomb Atticus uses to convince the jury that Tom is
innocent is tradition. Atticus integrates getting the the audience to deeply think about
what they are really doing to an innocent man. He also gets them to think about why
they are all accusing Tom guilty, which is simply because of Maycomb’s strict “code.” ...