My First Love
My first love was reading. Even in pre-birth I was into books and spoken word. My mom and grandma had to read to me to calm me down. I was talking about this love with a co-worker when we decided to we needed to read more. You know, to stay smart and sophisticated. We wanted to read the same things…We both are avid readers. So the Greentown book club was born. We are planning on reading whatever anyone chooses so if you are reading this, and want us to read something let me know. I guess I will be trying to speak about my love in an interesting and entertaining way and hope you fall in love with reading too. Or at least become good friends….or even casual acquaintances.
But back to the club’s first choice, read by high school students around the United States, To Kill a Mockingbird, by Harper Lee. The general story is about a little girl her brother in the south in the 30’s. The little girl lives with her father, Atticus, who is a defense lawyer and a respected man in their community. How do you get to be respected in the south? By working hard and being honest. Atticus was both but he ALSO happened to be as impartial as possible for someone in the south in the 30’s to be. In fact he was basically letting his black housekeeper raise his kids, (think The Help although not as heartbreaking- thank goodness). He was also trying to raise his kids to be good people and without prejudice. The children spent their time playing outside and trying to get their recluse neighbor to come outside, out of sheer curiosity, in the beginning, and then for friendship by the end. A case comes up for Atticus to defend a black man who supposedly raped and beat a white woman. Read the book to find out why I said supposedly. The woman, despite her supposed expectations of her race at the time, was known to be a liar. She was also known to be unrespectable, loose (as they say- I’m trying to be nice…), and pretty much every bad word you can say about a woman. The man, despite the supposed expectations of his race at the time, was known in his black community as respectable, hardworking, church attending, God-fearing family man, and also was even respected in the white community. He also only had one arm – an important detail once you read the trial. There was a life changing trial and I’m not going to tell you the end but it WAS a black man accused of rape of a white woman in the 30’s in the south…. that’s all I’m going to say. If you don’t like sad endings, well you have been warned.
At the Greentown club meeting we questioned if a similiar circumstance happened here, like the supposed rape of someone that everyone knew in our community, would the principle concern of the community be protecting the children from seeing and hearing too much. I doubt now the community, as a group would try to protect the children from seeing too much. The media doesn’t even try. Was there ever a time when really disturbing images were shown, but only after 9, when hopefully young eyes would be asleep? Another point illustrated by this book is how sad it is that people will do what is accepted over what is right. Sometimes what is right isn’t what is accepted but sadly a whole community will do what is accepted instead of doing what is right. (Sad face. I mean seriously society?!?!?!? ) I guess it was a depressing first pick. But maybe not…It does have a lesson. Killing something defenseless is wrong…and if only one person takes a stand for what is right, maybe you can’t change the whole world, but at least YOU have done what is right. If enough people do what is right, just for the reason of wanting to be able to look at themselves in the mirror, then you HAVE changed the world. So those were the thoughts of the club for our first book. Pick it up and tell me your thoughts on the book. The next book to be read is called Gang Leader for a day…If you want to read it with us, I’d love to hear your thoughts…So you know, I will be A LOT more opinionated for that book…I have SOOOOOOO many issues with half of this book in advance. Ok friends….Keep those pages turning :-)