“You too, child.”


Translated, this is what some believe were Julius Cesar’s last words as he realized Brutus was involved in the conspiracy to assassinate him on what became the Ides of March that we celebrate today. Whether he actually said anything is up for debate, but most historians are sure his disappointment at this discovery was profound.

We also celebrate the ill fated betrayal and demise of Jesus during these times.

As either story is told, its presents us with a classic martyr scenario. Yet, these actions were believed by their perpetrators to be justified, if perhaps somewhat cowardly in execution. It’s very easy to look at these scenarios through a morally polarized filter, but there have certainly been some assassinations over the years that were considered morally right by many, so as I always say, be careful about judging when you don’t know all the information and haven’t walked in the shoes of the other.

Stepping back from the questionable morality of it for a moment…and assuming there are times where it is a necessary action, what is the “right” way to assassinate someone? That it comes to this at all represents so many failures it makes one wonder, how could things be allowed to go so wrong? How could so much control be lost? Now there is the burden to weigh not only whether it can possibly be considered right to end a life under these (or any) circumstances, but what is the “right” way to go about it? Quick and decisive? In the open where you take the blame, and any consequences, or with secrecy? From a moral perspective, does it matter?

Everything matters if you care about the assessments of others.

And finally, what of the guilt the perpetrators carry with them after the fact? What of those men who fired the guns in the firing squad, or the man who released the rope of the guillotine? Or who gave the order to do so.

Betrayal, which comes in many lesser forms than murder, is a tough pill for either party to swallow. It is deemed wrong, and yet is sometimes justifiable, at least to some extent. Once things get this far, it is too late to save ourselves. We become prisoners, whether we execute the betrayal or not. There is no escape.

1 Response to ““You too, child.””

  1. 1 Christopher Ehren March 15, 2016 at 4:43 pm

    Gavrilo Princip.

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