Fighting Evil: The Rag and Bone Shop, and The Possibility of Evil

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Fredric Nietzche once said, “He who fights monsters must take care that he doesn’t become a monster in the process.” In other words, this means that someone who battles evil must make sure he doesn’t do evil himself. If he uses evil in the pursuit of justice, he is no better than the evil he is fighting. This idea is true and can be proven through character and plot from The Rag and Bone Shop by Robert Cormier and in “The Possibility of Evil” by Shirley Jackson. In novel The Rag and Bone Shop by Robert Cormier there is one specific character that fights monsters and becomes one along the way. Trent is an interrogation officer that works in Highgate, Vermont. Trent fights “monsters” such as criminals and murders and when he interrogates them he always gets a confession. Just because Trent gets a confession doesn’t always means it’s the truth. Trent pressures the people accused of abhorrent and appalling murders into saying they did a terrible crime even though it was not them. Evidence of him doing such a thing is when the police find the real murderer of a young girl in Monument, Massachusetts when Trent grasps a confession right out of an accused boy that had nothing to do with the murder. Trent was being a “monster” by accusing and pressuring a wrongly accused “monster” and getting a confession. Even though Trent is using evil to stop the bad and evil people out there in the world, Trent is no better than the people that are evil. The short story “The Possibility of Evil” by Shirley Jackson is another example of one person “fighting” monsters and becoming one in the process. In this text the main character Adela Strangeworth writes letters to people in “her” town on things they are doing wrong or things she doesn’t like. The letters are very rude, but because she thinks she is helping the “monsters” she has become a “monster” because of that. When she was going to deliver her letters one night she mistakenly dropped one and it got into the wrong hands. Because...
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