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๐Ÿ”ด Red’s Moral Code

 

๐Ÿ”ด Red’s Moral Code

 
April 22, 2015
 
It’s a good question where Red’s sense of “justice” comes from. I’ve been thinking about this a lot. We know the Greeks came up with our Western idea of “justice” โ€“ but did they invent it or simply write down what is implicit in human nature?

When we look around us we see our society’s sense of “justice” being torn apart by political polarization, the case of the IN & AR ‘religious freedom’ laws being a great example. The Right appeals to Scriptural mandates (though some would argue there are many other mandates in Leviticus that we comfortably ignore) whereas the Left appeals to the notion of ‘human rights,’ as laid out during the Enlightenment. Both are foundational, yet opposed to one another. In our highly polarized time, these inconsistencies have become vividly apparent. Worse, there is no way to reconcile them.

Further, we are confronted by corruption in high places, evidence of leaders lying to the people (eg Cheney lying about WMD) and a huge influx of money into the political process, leaving most Americans on the sidelines, helpless, and without hope of reversing this trend. Mass surveillance is approved by secret courts, information on torture is suppressed, and the CIA is in bed with opium producers. Bankers cheat the public and pay nothing. In fact WE pay THEM. The list goes on.

I love that The Blacklist is taking on these issues. This season, Red often speaks in terms of a common sense morality that points out these failings. And in the Alliance we see the threat of a international cartel deeply embedded within the power structures of powerful nations apparently on track to establish some kind of world-wide dominance, under what mantra we do not know.

Red is a reluctant opponent of these forces. He is acutely aware of his own sins and failings, but isn’t the acknowledgment of sin the first step toward justification? (There’s something about this in Ruslan Denisov.) Daniel Knauf, a senior writer for the show and Co-Producer) has said he thinks Red was taught by Jesuits.

Like Alan Shore in Boston Legal, Red is an outsider, someone who has a perspective outside of convention. In a corrupt society, only the criminal may be just. I think this is the path he’s on and โ€“ aside from the overarching story arc of Liz & Red โ€“ is the principle reason I watch. I think the show is a reflection of our current challenges and is instructive and valuable. As we learn more about why Red is the way he is, I hope and expect him to continue to emerge as a singularly moral man.

โ‹™ Posted before the show.
 

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