July 07, 2003

Kill One to Save Many...

Sitting here and thinking about watching Trigun like I have incessantly of late, the great Machiavellian question of the greatest good comes up. But Trigun stands that question on its head and perverts it a bit. Rather than, "kill one innocent for the good of many" it's "take one life to save those of many." The sad thing is that the initial stance of the series completely fails to take into account the circumstances involved and the guilt of the life in question.

For instance, if there is a trained assassin who will kill anyone who gets between him and his target, this individual is obviously a liability. Rather than allowing multiple people to die at his hands, his life should be forfeit. Granted, given enough time you can incapacitate him so that he cannot kill anymore, but the odds are good that in that time, he will kill more innocents. I would kill him the first chance I got, before he had a chance to do his worst.

Is this playing God? Probably. On the other hand, the question of the ends justifying the means is typically a thorny one. However, when given circumstances that are this easy to rectify and the means is killing a murderer to justify an end result of saving countless lives, this just isn't a rough decision. At least, not in my pragmatic and Machiavellian mind.

Posted by Vengeful Cynic at July 7, 2003 10:37 AM