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Previous Episode:
The Baptism
Next Episode:
The Night Walker
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Recap

John Boy decides that he will publish excerpts from Hitler's book "Mein Kampf" in his newspaper. It was a book written by Hitler where he vows to lead Germany to world dominance, and John Boy feels that the people of Waltons Mountain should be aware of what he has written. Many of the community's people, including the Reverend, however, think that they should remain ignorant of what Hitler has to say. John Boy argues, however, that ignorance will cause people to become afraid and behave irrationally, causing fear and hatred. He thinks that if people know the truth they will not be afraid.

Mrs Brimmer tells John Boy that her husband was born in Germany and during World War 1 they were victimised wherever they went because of it, and eventually they settled at Waltons Mountain where nobody knew the truth. Hatred and fear does indeed occur, with many people taking their ads out of the newspaper and not buying it. The Waltons even get a rock thrown through their window.

As all this is going on, Erin is pleading with her family to allow her to enter a beauty contest, but they are not keen, until Grandpa comes up with a compromise. She doesn't win and blames John Boy and his article for her loss. The show ends with a symbolic "book burning" thought up by Reverend Fordwick. He says that if the Nazis are burning American books then they should burn a copy of "Mein Kampf". Buck Vernon found this copy and then went on to gather all the other German books he could find and proposes that these are burned too. John Boy becomes very angry and says that if books are burnt then you can't know about what's in them, and your freedom is taken away. He pauses and picks up one of the books: a German version of the Holy Bible. Ashamed, the Reverend acknowledges that John Boy did have a point and the townsfolk recognize that ignorance did indeed cause hatred and fear and could cause normally rational people to behave irrationally.


Recurring Role

Guest Cast

Notes

Quotes

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