You know what actually this part really pissed me off. Not that people stood behind Harry but because Pansy is being vilified for that totally legitimate action: Voldemort, the terror of their time, the dark wizard of all dark wizards, is going to spare their lives if he’s given this ONE KID. These are all children, she wants her life, she wants her friends to live, she doesn’t want war and fighting and death. She thinks sacrificing that one life is better than causing the deaths of all these other people, including herself. And everyone acts like this is a shameful decision and she’s a horrible person for thinking it, well fuck that.
And then ALL the Slytherins get locked up in the dungeon as if they’re going to turn traitor on them, completely negating any sense of unity and friendship that the stupid hat was singing about a couple books back. Fuck this scene and the judgey people and couldn’t someone have looked at Pansy sympathetically and said the fighting wouldn’t end with that one sacrifice or that Voldemort was too far gone and too evil to be bargaining with and that this was worth fighting for? Couldn’t they have been given any sympathy or understanding at all?
THANK YOU VERY FUCKING MUCH FOR SAYING THAT ^
^BLESS YOU MY MOTHER ALWAYS BERATES ME FOR SYMPATHIZING WITH PANSY
Except that in the book they aren’t locked up in the dungeon. In the book, the Slytherin’s are the first to be lead out of the castle through the Room of Requirement.
Speaking of this. What guarantee did they really have that an oppressive, psychopath was going to let anyone live?
Another problem. The proper actions of a people are not defined by that which is convenient and safe. To quote one of the founders of the modern concepts of freedom and justice: “They who can give up essential liberty to obtain a little temporary safety, deserve neither liberty nor safety.
Or in more modern words than Mr. Franklin’s: “You ask, what is our policy? I will say: It is to wage war, by sea, land and air, with all our might and with all the strength that God can give us: to wage war against a monstrous tyranny, never surpassed in the dark, lamentable catalogue of human crime. That is our policy. You ask, what is our aim? I can answer in one word: It is victory, victory at all costs, victory in spite of all terror, victory, however long and hard the road may be; for without victory, there is no survival.” a rather more poignant quote. See, that which is right is the only course of action to which one may commit, for all that is required for evil to win is that good men do nothing. Britain could have pulled out of the Second World War, rebuilt her forces, and stayed stalwart and strong, the refuge of Europe. Hitler thought the British people a fellow Aryan race, and had no interest in their slaughter. We didn’t surrender. Because It Is Not The Done Thing. And it’s the same in Harry Potter. Blood has been spilled, and anything short of defeating the absolute embodiment of evil? It’s not acceptable. It is to let those who have died, die in vain, and to sentence future generations far outnumbering those within those castle walls to a life under tyranny, and such a life is no life at all. Pansy was inherently a coward. Not because she did not wish to fight, but because she was willing to give the life of another for her own. Not because she would not raise a weapon in anger, but because she was willing to actively sacrifice someone’s life other than her own. In the Second World War, only 1 in 4 of allied soldiers fired their guns, but all of them were on the front lines, and faced the horrors of potential death, yet very few were willing to let the side down and give the life of another to save their own. They were no cowards. They are never cowards who despite fear and the risk of death stand against evil. In China a man stared down a column of tanks, and it helped free Western Europe and topple the Soviet Regime. In Tunisia Mohamed Bouazizi decided to protest with his life the oppression of his government, and while rough times lie ahead, he set off the Arab Spring. In India, Ghandi Stood against the racism and the tyranny of British rule there, and he won. Because the right thing does not mean that you have to attack your enemy, that you have to kill him. Just that in the face of him you do not let your voice be cowed or your values compromised. She did, and for that she should be vilified. Maybe the example of that best captured in art: The Burghers of Calais. Six men who did not fight their enemy, but chose and took it upon their selves to make the sacrifice. They were not coerced into going, nor were they thrown out in the cold to die for the “good” of the people, but they elected to face what they would have seen as evil, for the sake of their people.
Basically, the TL;DR version, is that sacrificing the liberty of another for your own safety is not legitimate, is not the right course of action, but it cowardice in its highest form, and an act which should be vilified. There is no shame in choosing not to fight, but there is in being willing to sacrifice another against their will, in sacrificing the tenets of your morality, and in letting those who will come after you suffer for your safety today, and that is was Pansy did.