Posted by Robin Selby on August 28, 2018 at 00:33:50 user RobinSelby.
In Reply to: Re: Least Favourite Character! posted by Mike Jones on August 27, 2018 at 08:37:36:
The behaviour of Mr Farland, Dr Dudgeon and Constable Tedder is bizarre. They are respectively a solicitor, magistrate and policeman, and should know that there is a presumption of innocence until proved guilty. They refuse to exercise any sort of fairness to their children’s friends, though they should know that it is improbable that the Death and Glories should suddenly display anti-social behaviour, and equally improbable that their children would want to continue their friendship with such changelings. Messrs Farland, Dudgeon and Tedder therefore fail to give a lead to the community, regardless of the risk that a lynch mentality is developing which might cause real damage: Joe’s mother says that ‘Hannam’s would have sacked your dad if he weren’t too good a boatbuilder.’
Mr Farland talks nonsense when he says ‘It was a wicked plot and a clever plot, and many people have been taken in by it…It wouldn’t be a bad thing if the truth got out, though as a solicitor I suppose I ought not to say so’. It was imperative that the reputations of the boys should be restored forthwith.
Thus in the interests of his plot, Ransome had to make the adults behave badly. Perhaps Ransome went further than was strictly necessary; for example, Dr Dudgeon did not have to say that he found some of Tedder’s evidence persuasive, the more so since he had not followed the dictates of natural justice and heard what the Death and Glories had to say. However, it is worth noting that the moral failure of Messrs Farland, Dudgeon and Tedder is counter-balanced by Mrs Barrable and Mrs Dudgeon.
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