Solomon 2003

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I am the Headsman.

I deliver the Judgement of the People.

I Kill in Your Name.

I hone this axe.

I heft this axe.

I wield it with precision.

Neither my purpose nor my sinew will ever waver.

My resolve is iron.

My heart is ice.

I see my Peers, my fellow players. I do not think of them.

I see the man on the scaffold.

I do not judge him.

He is neither guilty nor innocent.

He is neither friend nor foe.

He is neither alive nor dead.

He is a job to finish.

I see the jury.

I do not measure them.

I do not doubt that they would embrace my task, if needs prescribed it.

But they lack the mercy of my efficiency.

They lack also my detachment.

They have discharged their responsibility through their choice.

They should not suffer in its implementation.

I see those who have already suffered.

Some would call them victims.

I have no need of such emotive words.

I see the displaced and the defiled.

I see the tormented and the tortured.

I see the dead, and those whose fate is worse.

I pity none of them.

And I see those who beseech me not to deliver the blow.

They alone disturb me, for they question my very purpose.

If you would stay the Headsman, then you must pay a price.

You must look into the eyes of the man on the scaffold, the eyes of the jury, the eyes of the victims.

You must judge them all.

You must weigh this suffering.

You must decide.

If you assert that all killing is always wrong, then you are a fool.

Your suit is vacuous.

You have shirked your responsibility.

You have deserted your humanity.

There is a case, there is always a case, when Justice is served only by Death.

Maybe it should befall the child-murderer.

Maybe it should befall the terrorist.

Maybe it should befall the genocidal dictator.

Maybe the terrible judgement lies beyond even these.

But Know or be Damned that it lies somewhere.

It is your choice, not mine, to place the mark, but place it you must.

Absolute pacifism is folly, an abject surrender to a Greater Evil.

At some point, in some limit, you must accept blood on your hands.

Accept it with pity, with shame, with disgust, but accept it as your Debt to Humanity.

No decent man thirsts for War.

No decent man believes that Peace equates to the rejection of War.

Just War is a Rare Thing, but it exists.

The axe must fall, so that our Children need not fear the axe.

Deny this paradox, and Peace will elude you.

I am the Headsman.

I will deliver the blow on your behalf.

Use me wisely.

Use me justly.

The man on the scaffold, the jury, the victims - these are my Peers, my fellow players.

I do not think of them.

I think only of You, You who would stay my hand.

And I pity only You.

Your Burden is more terrible than mine.

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