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Scout is young and innocent enough to want to protect her father. Jem, on the other hand is old enough to be afraid for him.
Jem comes to the "mob scene" and wants to stand strong with his father. Scout, who also wants to defend her father, begins to make the mob more personal by connecting with Mr. Cunningham, the father of one of her classmates. Her calm and this more intimate connection breaks the mob mentality and the men disperse at Mr. Cunningham's suggestion.