Hazel seems easily swayed by others, even today, or neither the first nor last incidents could happen.
And yet, I feel that what she did in the middle (did her own research and dug deep into the issues) is a more important thing to take away from this story. Isn't that the point of Rachel from "Inherit the Wind" being the best character in that play? That she actually sat down and read Origin of Species rather than trusting what both sides were telling her it was about? Apply that to Hazel's situation, and I think she is a real winner for having the guts to be able to look at the opposing side with open eyes.
Who knows what privately passed between them or went on in her mind. We really don't get to have an idea what changed, since she won't talk. I just don't find much to respect there. Understand, yes, - human frailty - but respect, no.