When Gold Hill runs short of money, they accept an offer of a school administrator, along with state funds. This results in unforeseen circumstances. First Mr. Simpson kicks out Murphy and Moses. Then he starts to implement more rules that results in less learning for the children, until they ultimately become a work camp. Things come to a head when he imprisons David and Matt in the mine with no food and water. Things look lost until Will discovers an important document. Written by
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When the Taylor's show up at the school to adopt Chester and introduce themselves to Simpson, Simpson proceeds to tell them there will be fees to pay back the State for food and clothes, and that since Chester is one of their better workers, the orphanage will lose profits from him being adopted. The Taylors leave in disbelief. The viewer is of course left with disgust that this character would think of profit before a child. But there is something that the writers may not have thought of: The same is true today with our country. The State controls the children, and one must pay fees to process and adopt children, thereby keeping many from bothering to try. Money before getting a kid a home. See more
In the beginning when Simpson arrives, he states that Father Murphy would have to leave "due to church and state separation". The establishment clause has always meant that there should be no national religion, like the Church of England. The "separation of church and state" as people talk about today didn't start until the 1940s/1950s. Back in the 1800s the government worked closely with the Church and other volunteer groups to help the people. See more