I watched those Miss America pageants growing up and imagined by some blind stroke of magic that I’d be crowned if I ever chose to run, but in the deep pockets of my heart I knew it would never happen. There was more cowboy than princess in me.
I thought Scout Finch, the young girl in To Kill A Mockingbird, was my isolated hero. No one but me would admire gal in overalls who used her knuckles to defend her honor. But when I did the Kick-Butt Women of Literature post, I discovered lots of others love Scout and thought it deserved some brain time.
1) Perhaps it’s because she’s intelligent in a way that comes from reading only the good parts of people. I tend to meet someone and read their bad side first. Oh sure, they have a good side, but like Jason Bourne, I like to know who I’m dealing with.
2) She certainly knew that a dress and maryjanes would keep a gal from climbing trees, crawling under forbidden fences, and taking her rightful place in exploring the world. Note to self: Dress more often for adventure and I’ll surely find it.
3) While it’s true, she has a combative streak, it comes from courage. We cheer and root for those energetic souls who get off their honyocks to follow their passion rather than slug a thumpty-slump through life without confrontation.
4) Most of all, like bedrock, she has a core faith in the goodness of the people around her. By the end of the book she changes.
But even the change is something to admire. She can appreciate human goodness without ignoring human evil.
The character inspires us to become what Mother Theresa advised:
“If you judge people, you have no time to love them.”
Keep shining your example Scout Finch. I’m working on it.
Not all change is bad.
Who’s your hero of change?