Billy Budd: Was Captain Vere Right? Essay

634 WordsOct 16, 19993 Pages
Billy Budd: Was Captain Vere Right? Captain Vere makes the right decision by executing Billy Budd. If CaptainVere lets Billy live the rest of the crew might get the impression that they will not be held accountable for their crimes. If the crew feels that they can get away with what ever they want then there is a chance that they might form a rebellion and have a mutiny. A mutiny would destroy the stability and good name of the ship and the crew. Captain Vere does not want to see this happen. There are three main reasons Captain Vere makes the right decision by executing Billy Budd. These reasons are that if Billy lives then a mutiny might occur, because the law states that a crime as severe as Billy's is punishable by death,…show more content…
In the story CaptainVere is described as "never tolerating an infraction of discipline" (p. 16). This trait could be the reason for Billy's death. Another reason Captain Vere might execute Billy Budd is that he does not want Billy to suffer with his extreme guilty until a martial court can see his case. Captain Vere probably had a personal attachment to Billy. This is evident when Captain Vere says, "struck dead by an angel of God! Yet the angel must hang!" (p. 51). This statement implies Captain Vere's true feelings for Billy. If Captain Vere had let a martial court try the case then they would most likely come to the same conclusion. Because of this fact Captain Vere did not find it necessary to make Billy wait for a trial. Captain Vere made the right decision by executing Billy for his crimes. Although the decision was controversial it kept stability among the crew. The crew's fate is more important than any individual sailor's fate. If Captain Vere had made the opposite decision than there probably would be a very horrible fate for the Bellipotent. Billy Budd could be considered a tragic hero. In his short life Billy touched more lives than most people do in there entire lives. Billy is somebody that most readers would agree is a tragic hero. Even though Billy Budd is so great, Captain Vere made the right
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