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Huckleberry Finn's moral delema

swing_voter

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It was a close place. I took . . . up [the letter I’d written to Miss Watson], and held it in my hand. I was a-trembling, because I’d got to decide, forever, betwixt two things, and I knowed it. I studied a minute, sort of holding my breath, and then says to myself: “All right then, I’ll go to hell”—and tore it up. It was awful thoughts and awful words, but they was said. And I let them stay said; and never thought no more about reforming.


So Huckleberry had the Widow as a foster mother, she took him to church every Sunday. Huckleberry didn't like civilization much.

Huckleberry's father, kidnapped him. A vicious drunk, he was about to kill Huckleberry, but Huckleberry faked his own death and escaped onto the Mississippi River. That's where he meets Jim, a runaway slave.

Jim's goal is to find his wife and kids who have been sold down river.

Jim's an all around good person. He's kind, thoughtful, and all that.

The problem is, society, the church, and even his no-good drunk of a dad had tought Huckleberry that turning in a runaway slave was the right thing to do.

So what was Huckleberry to do? He wrote a letter to Miss Watson explaining how to find Jim and return him to slavery. But then he decides to tear the letter up.

“All right then, I’ll go to hell,” he says.

Was this the right decision?
 

SmartCat

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When I read that as a teenager I thought Huckelberry Finn was mistaken about his belief that he would go to Hell for helping Jim find his wife and children.
 

swing_voter

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When I read that as a teenager I thought Huckelberry Finn was mistaken about his belief that he would go to Hell for helping Jim find his wife and children.



Even the Constitution said escaped slaves are to be returned to their owners.
 

swing_voter

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Where did the Constitution say that? Quote the specific words.


The Fugitive Slave Clause of the United States Constitution, also known as either the Slave Clause or the Fugitives From Labor Clause, is Article IV, Section 2, Clause 3, which requires a "person held to service or labor" (usually a slave, apprentice, or indentured servant) who flees to another state to be returned to ...

Don't you have google?
 

SmartCat

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The Fugitive Slave Clause of the United States Constitution, also known as either the Slave Clause or the Fugitives From Labor Clause, is Article IV, Section 2, Clause 3, which requires a "person held to service or labor" (usually a slave, apprentice, or indentured servant) who flees to another state to be returned to ...

Don't you have google?

No Person held to Service or Labour in one State, under the Laws thereof, escaping into another, shall, in Consequence of any Law or Regulation therein, be discharged from such Service or Labour, but shall be delivered up on Claim of the Party to whom such Service or Labour may be due.
 

Big Eye

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It was a close place. I took . . . up [the letter I’d written to Miss Watson], and held it in my hand. I was a-trembling, because I’d got to decide, forever, betwixt two things, and I knowed it. I studied a minute, sort of holding my breath, and then says to myself: “All right then, I’ll go to hell”—and tore it up. It was awful thoughts and awful words, but they was said. And I let them stay said; and never thought no more about reforming.


So Huckleberry had the Widow as a foster mother, she took him to church every Sunday. Huckleberry didn't like civilization much.

Huckleberry's father, kidnapped him. A vicious drunk, he was about to kill Huckleberry, but Huckleberry faked his own death and escaped onto the Mississippi River. That's where he meets Jim, a runaway slave.

Jim's goal is to find his wife and kids who have been sold down river.

Jim's an all around good person. He's kind, thoughtful, and all that.

The problem is, society, the church, and even his no-good drunk of a dad had tought Huckleberry that turning in a runaway slave was the right thing to do.

So what was Huckleberry to do? He wrote a letter to Miss Watson explaining how to find Jim and return him to slavery. But then he decides to tear the letter up.

“All right then, I’ll go to hell,” he says.

Was this the right decision?
There is no dilemma unless you think all man made laws must be right....given the diversity of man made laws on any given subject over time and between different countries it is clear that those laws with the least universal acceptance are probably morally wrong.
 
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