Opie and a man passing through Mayberry become friends. However, the man's free spirited tendencies start to rub off on Opie. Andy makes the decision to send the man on his way, to protect Opie and teach him the value of working hard, going to school, and respecting other people's property.
Reverend Moore delivers a sermon in which he discusses trusting others to do what's best for themselves rather than being their guardian. He asks, "If we don't start trusting our children, how will they ever become trustworthy?"