Burning of the Berry’s:
This incident comes under the theme of prejudice as the law was on the side of the white people and justice was not done. The Berry’s were “lit (him) afire” by drunk whites who accused John Berry of “flirting” with a white girl and when Henrietta told the sheriff about the incident, “he called her a liar and sent her home”. This shows that the sheriff ignored the issue and didn’t bother investigating the case as he feels it was unimportant and that blacks were always in the wrong. This also suggests that he was bias as a white and so he was naturally on the white’s side. The white men took the life of an innocent black man without giving him a chance to explain himself based on a rumour yet were not punished for their actions and the suffering and victimization they caused. Secondly, the incident is under the theme of prejudice as the lives of the blacks were disrespected and disregarded by the whites. After the white men killed the Berry’s by setting them on fire, some of them went “around bragging about it” and even said “they’d do it again if some other uppity nigger get out of line”. This shows that the whites did not feel that what they’re doing is wrong and the terrible outcome was a glorious event to celebrate; not ashamed of anything. Hence, this shows their arrogance and superiority they displayed. They did not respect and care about the lives of the black people and thought the blacks were just part of a fun prank.
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