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Melinda witnesses two very different reactions to speaking/speaking up. In some instances, she sees people humiliated, such as Rachel who speaks up against symbolism in English class. These instances reaffirm Melinda's belief that speaking only hurts you, never helps you. However, in other cases, such as David Petrakis' stance against Mr. Neck, Melinda observes the power of speaking up. These instances ultimately encourage her to grow and speak again.