Truth and justice are hidden by oppression in society. In Harper Lee's To Kill A Mockingbird, it portrayed unfair treatment from a racist town causing justice and morals to be lost. Due to the serious racial divide between blacks and whites, Tom Robinson was wrongly accused and ultimately convicted of rape. Though the town was well aware of their ludicrous actions, the trial continued to demonstrate unjust persecution toward an innocent man. Tom Robinson's trial symbolized unfair treatment of blacks through blatant racism, fear of change and truth, and the negligence of faulty evidence.
A guilty verdict was delivered based on circumstantial and contradicting evidence. This was wrong and unlawful but still occurred in the trial of Tom Robinson. During the cross-examination of Mayella Ewell, Atticus proved that it was impossible for Tom Robinson to commit the crime. "His left arm was fully twelve inches shorter than his right, and hung dead at his side. It ended in a small shriveled hand… I could see that it was no use to him" (Lee, 248). This was a blatant contradiction and proved that Tom could not have punched Mayella. Despite having shown that Tom's arm, Mayella still claimed that Tom abused her. Similarly, Mayella lied to protect her reputation by claiming she had never invited Tom inside the fence. Contradicting Mayella, Tom Robinson stated, "Well, I went lots of times… Seemed like every time I passed by yonder she'd have some little somethin' for me to do" (256). However, the court trusted the white girl and assumed the black man guilty. Though there was evidence against her case, the court was forced to side with Mayella, because it was a black against a white. The town was negligent overlooking faults in the evidence which made them dishonest, unrighteous, and immoral.
Assumptions, discrimination, and bigotry of the town and jury fueled the injustice in Tom Robinson's conviction. Scout noticed the prejudice in the town in many situations such as learning about the Holocaust. Scout asked Jem, "I heard her say it's time somebody taught 'em a lesson, they were getting' way above themselves… Jem, how can you hate Hitler so bad an' then turn around and be ugly about folks right at home"(331). Clearly, Scout saw the injustice against blacks from her town's residents. Though people in Maycomb may not have seen the hypocrisy and prejudice present during the time, it affected the ruling of Tom Robinson's trial. In addition, Dolphus Raymond, commonly considered drunk, revealed his secret about feigning drunkenness. Mr. Raymond explained to Scout, Jem, and Dill, "I try to give ‘em a reason, you see. It helps folks...