Justice Or Love Essay

1000 words - 4 pages


In the short story, A Fathers Story by Andre Debus, a man named Luke Ripley is challenged by a decision that effects himself, the people he loves, and his faith. The author, Dubus, uses what a man named Paul Fussell describes as "the literary-artistic-historical sensibility"
Luke Ripley loves his daughter very much. He wishes that he was closer with his daughter but has an awkward relationship with her. She is the youngest of his four children and the only daughter. When him and his wife got divorced she took the children with her. Because they lived far away he was only able to see his children when they visited. The three boys did not visit much but his daughter would come for the summers. Luke speaks a lot about his daughter and how strange it is for him to watch her grow from a small child into a young woman. Although you can tell Luke loves his daughter he has a strange distant relationship with her.
Luke is also a very religious man. He goes to church every single Sunday. His closest and only friend is named Paul Leboeuf. Paul is also the minister at the church Luke attends. Being a religious man, Luke feels guilty about moving on and finding someone new to love because it goes against the wedding vows he made to his wife. Being a faithful and moral man is another example of how Dubus created underlying problems in the story.
Dubus then takes the fundamental issues and uses events in the story to bring those out. One summer night when Lukes daughter was visiting, she and her friends went out. They had a few drinks and on the way home after dropping off her friends she hits a young man crossing the street with her car. She rushes home in a panic to get her father. After sometime and a little alcohol she tells her father what happened.
Luke and his daughter share a beautiful movement when she comes home and tells him what had happened. Luke sends her to bed and immediately rushes out the door and goes to the stop were his daughter had hit the man. On the side of the road in a ditch he finds the young man dead. Luke then makes the choice between being the moral faithful man he was by turning his daughter in or be the father that loved his daughter more then anything and protect her against the law. He was forced to make a decision that impacted all the people he loved. Despite the fact that he was a religious man and valued truth he choose to protect his daughter.
The fact that Dubus made him a religious man makes the story more complicated. He choose his daughter even though his God could punish him for doing the wrong thing. Because he is a religious man he choose his daughter over possibly loosing or upsetting his God. I also think that having Luke and his daughters...

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