An Enemy of the People
Dr. Thomas Stockmann was a determined and caring man who was passionate when it came to his beliefs. However, Stockmann was also an idealist who was rather naive when it came to reality. As the Medical Advisor of the baths, he wanted to expose the truth of the hazards that the baths presented before any more people became ill. He fought with the fervor of a true patriot, but was accused of trying to sabotage the hometown that he was fighting for and was condemned as a traitor. Was Dr. Stockmann really an enemy of the people or just an idealist with all the odds against him?
Right from the beginning of the play it was apparent that Dr. Stockmann was a man of character. He welcomed the company of his fellow townspeople by offering food and drinks to anyone who entered the Stockmann house. He was very active in town and was constantly publishing articles and pamphlets concerning various ideas he had to improve the health or lives of his fellow citizens. The main reason he took such a strong position on the issue of the baths was because it concerned the health of the public. Even after the whole town was against him, Dr. Stockmann was still looking out for the well-being of the people by not giving in to the Mayor's request that he take back his accusations in order to save his job.
One of the several things the doctor had against him was that not many people took his ideas and discoveries seriously. Therefore, when he declared that the town's baths were actually cesspools he didn't get the reaction he had hoped for. The Mayor warned Dr. Stockmann that fixing the problem of the baths would hurt the town economically and therefore they should cover the problem instead. Dr. Stockmann refused to let people suffer illnesses from the toxic water just to save the town money. The Mayor retaliated by refusing that there was as much danger as Stockmann claimed, therefore turning the public against the doctor. However, being the idealist that...
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