"Dry September" focuses on the kidnapping and likely murder of Will Mayes, a black man in a Mississippi town, when he is connected sexually (by way of rumor) to a white woman. The story features a vigilante mob, and explores the psychology of the mob's formation and operation. As we all know, this scenario was real in the pre-Civil Rights South, and even after that. Set in the late 1920s or early 1930s, the story presents a vision of a place where justice seems completely absent, and where conviction and sentencing come before investigation and trial.
By negative example, "Dry September" shows us that some important aspects of justice are patience, listening, and entertaining multiple perspectives.
Minnie and Will are both judged harshly by the people of Jefferson; these judgments are based on irrational prejudices concerning race, gender, and sexuality.