Calpurnia is a black woman, but Atticus and the kids dont see that. She is just progresses there are a few comments about Negroes, and one by Cal, (referring to belief in Hot Steams as being 'Nigger talk'). Later in the novel it is a bit of a puzzle in the kids' minds as to why there is a problem with Atticus defending Tom.
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Atticus always maintains that prejudice is a sickness of sorts. It doesn't take much to maintain this sickness; it has been ingrained into people for generations. Tom Robinson lives in a world where racial intolerance is normal rather than the exception. Atticus and a few other characters attempt to change things but prejudice is a tough disease to treat. By the end of the novel both Scout and Jem have matured. Their innocence is lost as they see the ugly truth of racism in all its obscenity. There is racism everywhere. Yes, it is even around me. I live in northern Canada and racism takes on various forms. Fortunately we have progressed from the context of Mockingbird but it still exists. What do we do about it? I think Atticus said it best by putting ourselves in other people's shoes. Empathy and education is the best tonic to cure this silly disease.