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sirmethos

The worst act

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Again, inspired by a thread on CV:

 

What is the worst act, that a hero has committed, while not being mind-controlled or otherwise influenced?

 

 

 

My own answer:

 

Batman - Over and over again, putting serial mass-murderers in prison, knowing, with no uncertainty, that they are going to break out and kill several innocent people before he can catch them again. Rinse and repeat. And doing this, despite having the knowledge, influence, and resources, to(without killing them) ensure that they would not be able to escape.

 

It's called accessory to murder(and various other crimes), negligent homicide, or at worst, conspiracy to commit murder(and various other crimes)

 

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Again, inspired by a thread on CV:

 

What is the worst act, that a hero has committed, while not being mind-controlled or otherwise influenced?

 

 

 

My own answer:

 

 

Batman - Over and over again, putting serial mass-murderers in prison, knowing, with no uncertainty, that they are going to break out and kill several innocent people before he can catch them again. Rinse and repeat. And doing this, despite having the knowledge, influence, and resources, to(without killing them) ensure that they would not be able to escape.

 

It's called accessory to murder(and various other crimes), negligent homicide, or at worst, conspiracy to commit murder(and various other crimes)

 

I don't know what horrible country you live in, but taking criminals to jail is not accessory to murder. That is the biggest load of BS I've ever been asked to swallow.

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LOL you completely missed the entire point of his post and didn't read most of it huh? You do know what he is referring to right?

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I don't know what horrible country you live in, but taking criminals to jail is not accessory to murder. That is the biggest load of BS I've ever been asked to swallow.

 

Congratulations, you completely missed the point.

 

What makes it the worst act a hero has committed, is not that he puts them in jail.  It's that he does so knowing, with no uncertainty, that they are going to break out and kill several people, before he stops them again, rinse and repeat.

 

And not just that, he does that "despite having the knowledge, influence, and resources, to(without killing them) ensure that they would not be able to escape."

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Again, inspired by a thread on CV:

 

What is the worst act, that a hero has committed, while not being mind-controlled or otherwise influenced?

 

 

 

My own answer:

 

Batman - Over and over again, putting serial mass-murderers in prison, knowing, with no uncertainty, that they are going to break out and kill several innocent people before he can catch them again. Rinse and repeat. And doing this, despite having the knowledge, influence, and resources, to(without killing them) ensure that they would not be able to escape.

 

It's called accessory to murder(and various other crimes), negligent homicide, or at worst, conspiracy to commit murder(and various other crimes)

 

 

Nope.

 

Batman doesn't put criminals in prison and more than a police officer does. He captures them and they go into the US criminal justice system where they are convicted. You can indict the legislature in the DCU for not having harsher sentencing guidelines, the DCU court system for the actual sentencing, or the DCU penal system for it's gross incompetence.

 

While the criminal justice system in the DCU is criminally flawed on many levels but law enforcement (the part that Batman is formally connected with) works fairly well. He's not to blame for the parts that don't work any more than a policeman is responsible for the sentencing or imprisonment of the people he arrests.

 

You could argue that someone like the Punisher is more effective in such a broken system. He usurps the role of the judicial and penal elements of the city which are the most badly broken. Batman usurps the role of law enforcement, which is also broken but not nearly so badly.

 

But there's no cogent way to claim that he's a conspirator or an accessory to any crime. 

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Congratulations, you completely missed the point.

 

What makes it the worst act a hero has committed, is not that he puts them in jail.  It's that he does so knowing, with no uncertainty, that they are going to break out and kill several people, before he stops them again, rinse and repeat.

 

And not just that, he does that "despite having the knowledge, influence, and resources, to(without killing them) ensure that they would not be able to escape."

 

He could do more but fails to do more... so it's a 'sin of omission?'

 

How do you see him using his knowledge, influence and resources to imprison them without hope of escape?

 

Doc Savage was a similar kind of hero (a wealthy, peak human genius) who also struggled with this issue. Doc's solution was his secret "Crime College" in upstate New York. the criminals he captured were sent there (without the knowledge or consent of the authorities) and subjected to brain surgery. This cured the patients of criminal impulses and robbed them of long term memory. Doc's staff would then prepare new identities for the patients, train them in a useful skill and set them up in a new life.

 

I've seen arguments on both sides about the morality of this.

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That would be a really interesting aspect for a miniseries to deal with. How does a system designed to deal with ordinary criminals deal with supervillains? What laws and sentencing guidelines need to change? We've seen a little of prisons being modified, though these tend to fail dramatically.

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The avengers being totally cool with the *insensitivity* of Ms. Marvel is pretty awful.

 ^this

 

Awful and horribly out of character.

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When Bruce Wayne decided to put a costume on and be Batman I think that's when he made himself the cause of all the supervillains (People like Joker or Riddler) who started to pop up in Gotham. In a way he ended up putting himself in the position where he is responsible for the actions of the supervillains. As far as the Gotham police are concerned it's not their fault since the supervillains prep themselves (Weapons or equipment) and put themselves on a level where really Batman a lot of times can only put them down in the end.  I would have to agree with Methos and that isn't Batman's only bad act.

 

Avengers- That was just horrible with what happened to Carol and stupidity on the Avenger's part. 

 

My Own:

 

Ultimate Avengers and Shield not helping Peter Parker at all. He saves Captain America and takes a bullet for him.  Nobody bothers to go find him to see if he is okay. That's on top of the fact Osborn breaks out and it is pretty obvious where he was going next. You mean to tell me they didn't give a damn?  Nick Fury, Captain America, and none of the heroes went oh crap we better go find Peter Parker since he is hurt badly. He has Green Goblin coming from him so we owe the kid that much. I loved how their was a big fight in a neighorhood and nobody picked up on it? Not Shield or the Avengers?  I mean their were huge electric sparks in the neighorhood that could be seen in the sky.

Congrats to them because a dead teenager ended up on their hands. Cap deserved that slap he got at the funeral for the way he acted towards Spiderman.

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Nope.

 

Batman doesn't put criminals in prison and more than a police officer does. He captures them and they go into the US criminal justice system where they are convicted. You can indict the legislature in the DCU for not having harsher sentencing guidelines, the DCU court system for the actual sentencing, or the DCU penal system for it's gross incompetence.

 

While the criminal justice system in the DCU is criminally flawed on many levels but law enforcement (the part that Batman is formally connected with) works fairly well. He's not to blame for the parts that don't work any more than a policeman is responsible for the sentencing or imprisonment of the people he arrests.

 

You could argue that someone like the Punisher is more effective in such a broken system. He usurps the role of the judicial and penal elements of the city which are the most badly broken. Batman usurps the role of law enforcement, which is also broken but not nearly so badly.

 

But there's no cogent way to claim that he's a conspirator or an accessory to any crime. 

 

Batman doesn't put people like the Joker, Scarecrow, etc., into prison?

 

I guess I must have been seeing things then, 'cause I seem to remember seeing several occasions, where after taking various criminals down, he takes them directly to Arkham.

 

If needs be, I can leaf through the comics and find a bunch of specific examples, but I shouldn't have to.

 

He could do more but fails to do more... so it's a 'sin of omission?'

 

How do you see him using his knowledge, influence and resources to imprison them without hope of escape?

 

Doc Savage was a similar kind of hero (a wealthy, peak human genius) who also struggled with this issue. Doc's solution was his secret "Crime College" in upstate New York. the criminals he captured were sent there (without the knowledge or consent of the authorities) and subjected to brain surgery. This cured the patients of criminal impulses and robbed them of long term memory. Doc's staff would then prepare new identities for the patients, train them in a useful skill and set them up in a new life.

 

I've seen arguments on both sides about the morality of this.

 

How do I see him using his knowledge, influence, and resources, to imprison criminals without hope of escape(or at least minimal hope of escape)?

 

Simple:

 

Knowledge: He is a master of escapology(and prep), so any prison that gets designed, he can attempt to escape from. And when he manages to make a plan that enables him to escape, he closes those holes in the security.  He also has technological knowledge to ensure a level of security technology that is far beyond what is used in various prisons in the modern day DC universe.

 

Influence: As Batman, he has connections to various people, such as Mister Terrific, Steel, Martian Manhunter, Superman, etc. who can help with increasing the level of security technology.  People such as Zatanna, Dr. Fate, Jason Blood, etc. who can help provide magic to increase security. And people such as Captain Atom, Johnny Thunder, etc. who have other powers that could easily be used to, again, increase security(changing the molecular structure of the walls, to be impenetrable, for example).  And as Bruce Wayne, he has the money and influence to get support for building a new prison for "super villains".

 

Resources: He's got more money than god, he has access to Kryptonian, Martian, Apokoliptian, etc.  technology, and he has the phone numbers of pretty much every super hero in the DC universe, and enough respect to easily call in a few favors and have people help with the prison, especially when the end goal is that they don't have to keep fighting the same villains, over and over again, like a demented game of wack-a-mole. -.-

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Not really sure if this is all THAT bad, but I remember one issue of Spiderman back in the early 2000s or so where Peter was really pissed off about something and was exploring the sewers and he came across Scorpion who at that point had been trying to turn over a new leaf and even told Peter so but Peter just went to town on him and it's implied after the beatdown that it destroyed what little sanity Mac had left. Way to help him try to change for the better, Pete!

 

Though they would have turned Mac into a badguy again anyway, like they did with Sandman.

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Batman doesn't put people like the Joker, Scarecrow, etc., into prison?

 

I guess I must have been seeing things then, 'cause I seem to remember seeing several occasions, where after taking various criminals down, he takes them directly to Arkham.

 

If needs be, I can leaf through the comics and find a bunch of specific examples, but I shouldn't have to.

 

You don't have to. I've seen scenes like that. My assumption has always been that Batman was returning escaped criminals to their place of confinement. This would be analogous to what a police officer does. I don't believe it means that Batman has the authority to confine people who have not been tried and sentenced by a court. If it does mean that, then the legal system is broken far worse in the DCU than I realized.

 

How do I see him using his knowledge, influence, and resources, to imprison criminals without hope of escape(or at least minimal hope of escape)?

 

Simple:

 

Knowledge: He is a master of escapology(and prep), so any prison that gets designed, he can attempt to escape from. And when he manages to make a plan that enables him to escape, he closes those holes in the security.  He also has technological knowledge to ensure a level of security technology that is far beyond what is used in various prisons in the modern day DC universe.

 

Influence: As Batman, he has connections to various people, such as Mister Terrific, Steel, Martian Manhunter, Superman, etc. who can help with increasing the level of security technology.  People such as Zatanna, Dr. Fate, Jason Blood, etc. who can help provide magic to increase security. And people such as Captain Atom, Johnny Thunder, etc. who have other powers that could easily be used to, again, increase security(changing the molecular structure of the walls, to be impenetrable, for example).  And as Bruce Wayne, he has the money and influence to get support for building a new prison for "super villains".

 

Resources: He's got more money than god, he has access to Kryptonian, Martian, Apokoliptian, etc.  technology, and he has the phone numbers of pretty much every super hero in the DC universe, and enough respect to easily call in a few favors and have people help with the prison, especially when the end goal is that they don't have to keep fighting the same villains, over and over again, like a demented game of wack-a-mole. -.-

 

I'll start with saying where I agree with you: the situation with escaping criminals in the DCU is absurd; Batman could do a lot to improve the security of prisons; I'll even agree that people who can make a difference should do so.

 

That last statement, which was nicely paraphrased by Stan Lee as: "With great power comes great responsibility" is a sound ethical statement. It's a lot more complex as a legal statement. There are certain situations where it is used in the law, but in specific and limited ways. When a nation is at war, it can conscript soldiers, effectively saying that those deemed able to fight have a legal obligation to do so. In the US there are so-called "Good Samaritan" laws in some states. These require people with special skills (generally medical training) to use those skills if they encounter someone in immediate need (like the victim of an auto accident.) The most general way I see this principal applied is in taxation. Those with the ability to financially contribute to the government's ability to serve and protect the society are required to do so.

 

But the idea that a private citizen who has the resources to improve prison security, must do so doesn't have any legal traction. If fails to meet any legal definition of either being an accessory or conspiracy. If it could ever come to court at all, it would be as a civil suit, not a criminal matter, and I can't imagine it succeeding.

 

In America there's a growing trend of the government farming out imprisonment to private corporations. If Batman (or Bruce Wayne) got involved in this, built his own prison, and entered into a contract with the government where he carried out the sentences that the judiciary imposed, he would have a legal responsibility. If his prison didn't meet established guidelines that would fall on him. If there was a problem with escapes at his prison, he would be investigated and (depending on what they found) would be subject to civil lawsuits or even criminal prosecution.

 

(The idea of Bruce Wayne buying Arkham Asylum and beefing up its security makes a lot of sense, I'm surprised no DC writer has ever come up with this.)

 

When we're talking about government owned and operated prisons and other facilities, the responsibility isn't on Batman in the same kind of way.

 

You single out Batman because he could use Kryptonian, Martian, Apokalyptian technology and sorcery to improve prison security. Why him? Shouldn't that responsibility fall on Superman, Orion, Mattian Manhunter, Zatanna, Johnny Thunder, and the people who have more direct access to it. I can see saying the entire superhero community has a moral responsibility in this area, but I don't understand singling out Batman.

 

I also think there is a greater responsibility on the community. Why hasn't the Mayor of Gotham, or the Warden of Blackgate, or some other community leader ever asked Batman to help improve prison security? If they asked and he refused, you'd have a much stronger case. The situation with imprisonment in the DCU is messed up, but there are a lot of people who bear much greater responsibility than Batman for that. 

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"You don't have to. I've seen scenes like that. My assumption has always been that Batman was returning escaped criminals to their place of confinement. This would be analogous to what a police officer does. I don't believe it means that Batman has the authority to confine people who have not been tried and sentenced by a court. If it does mean that, then the legal system is broken far worse in the DCU than I realized."

 

Completely true.  But if you read my first post, the "worst act" does not involve taking down criminals for the first time.  It's taking down repeat criminals, over and over, putting them back in prison, with the complete knowledge, that they are going to break out, and kill again.

 

 

"You single out Batman because he could use Kryptonian, Martian, Apokalyptian technology and sorcery to improve prison security. Why him? Shouldn't that responsibility fall on Superman, Orion, Mattian Manhunter, Zatanna, Johnny Thunder, and the people who have more direct access to it. I can see saying the entire superhero community has a moral responsibility in this area, but I don't understand singling out Batman."

 

I single out Batman, because as far as I know, he is the only one that is territorial.

 

Someone like say... Superman. doesn't have any real problem, if another super hero does some crime fighting in Metropolis, or Flash in Central City, etc.

 

Batman, on the other hand, has told, not asked but flat out told, other heroes to stay out of Gotham, that Gotham is his city.  That's fine, but that also makes him responsible.

 

In Metropolis, Superman isn't the only one that can take down Metallo.  If Superman isn't around, or he's busy, or somehow slacking in his superheroing, there are plenty of other heroes who can step in and take Metallo down.

 

In Gotham, there's only Batman, and his little group of lapdogs.  That means, that stopping the criminals, and making sure that they do not go out and kill even more civilians, is his responsibility.

 

The way I see it, Batman has more blood on his hands, than a lot of super-villains.

 

 

"I also think there is a greater responsibility on the community. Why hasn't the Mayor of Gotham, or the Warden of Blackgate, or some other community leader ever asked Batman to help improve prison security? If they asked and he refused, you'd have a much stronger case. The situation with imprisonment in the DCU is messed up, but there are a lot of people who bear much greater responsibility than Batman for that."

 

In the DCU, "normal" humans are notoriously inept, until they become part of the super-society, one way or another.

 

Batman on the other hand, is supposedly one of the most intelligent people on the planet. And is directly stated to have "contingencies for everything". Well, apparently he's not intelligent enough to realize that a better prison, might keep the prisoners locked up for longer periods of time, nor does he seem to have contingencies for his primary villains, escaping prison.

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Superman (Pre Flashpoint) actually is way better at keeping his villains from killing citizens in Metropolis because not only does he welcome more heroes in Metropolis he actually started to lock up villains in the Phantom Zone.  Superman even game Guardian and in his police force access to a phantom zone projector to put the more dangerous villains like Parasite in. That's why the same villains don't show up often and it's always a big moment  in the Superman comics when they do come back.

 

Batman won't let anyone else handle his villains and he hates when others interfere to help him without asking his permission. He is very stubborn in that area. Batman's villains aren't Superman's responsibility.

 

Batman has outright said Gotham is his city to protect along with the Batman Family. That's it. When you make a claim like that then your responsible for the actions of your villains.

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Dinsdale touched on this with the Doc Savage problem, but the way various telepathic superheroes sometimes "reprogram" villains seems wrong to me. That can be debated though.

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Using telepathy on villains to reprogram or mindwipe them usually backfires on the heroes in both DC and Marvel. 

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Using telepathy to "reprogram" a villain is no better than killing them.  Hell, imo, it's worse.

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It's funny, way back in the early days of Batman (40 or 41 IIRC) he mentioned that he was sending Joker off to a "famous brain specialist" to cure his madness. The only "brain specialist" I know of, real or fictional, who did this kind of work was Doc Savage.

 

That would be a fun idea to explore if DC wanted to do a crossover story someday.

 

Doc's system worked pretty well in his stories. The "graduates" of his College went on to be happy, productive citizens, which is a better future than most of them would have had if they'd been sent to prison. Of course the whole induced amnesia thing is pretty creepy. Their identities are wiped out and replaced with new ones, and their friends and family never see then again and never learn what happened to them.

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Again, inspired by a thread on CV:

 

What is the worst act, that a hero has committed, while not being mind-controlled or otherwise influenced?

 

 

 

My own answer:

 

Batman - Over and over again, putting serial mass-murderers in prison, knowing, with no uncertainty, that they are going to break out and kill several innocent people before he can catch them again. Rinse and repeat. And doing this, despite having the knowledge, influence, and resources, to(without killing them) ensure that they would not be able to escape.

 

It's called accessory to murder(and various other crimes), negligent homicide, or at worst, conspiracy to commit murder(and various other crimes)

 

superman is just as guilty.

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superman is just as guilty.

 

If you read through the thread, I have detailed in one of my later posts, exactly why I have singled Batman out.  I even specifically use Superman as an example.

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