2. Do others like you? Do you want others to like you?
I think that some people like me, and some people don’t. Pretty much like they do with everybody else. I think — I think that a lot of times people like Captain America without bothering to know much about me, or even really think about me all that much one way or the other. And I think a lot of other people hate Cap without giving a damn about me. And I can’t really say that I care all that much one way or the other. Sure, if there’s somebody that I like and respect, that I admire, I’d want them to like me in return. That’s only natural. But if they don’t I’ll still get on just fine. There’s a lot worse things that a man might have to endure than not being well-liked. I guess I’d say I’d rather be disliked for being who am I and doing my best to stay true to the things that I believed in, than to be the most popular guy in a room but having to compromise myself in order to court other people’s affections.
4. How do you know when you’re in love? (romantic or platonic)
I don’t know if there’s something I can point to, if there’s something concrete I can nod at and say “this thing, right here, this is how I know”. Love’s a little slipperier than that. I think that it likes to sneak up on you, creep in around the edges when you’re not looking for it. I’ve got friends I love like family, and I’m not sure I cold tell you when I realized how important they were to me and just what that meant. I didn’t wake up one day knowing that I loved them, like there was a moment where I wasn’t sure and then all of a sudden I knew. It sort of grew, something natural and easy growing up out of friendship and worry and affection and trust until its put its roots down in you and become a part of who you are. You don’t really notice that it’s there all at once, just sort of wake to it in stages, until it becomes one of those things that you feel like you’ve always known, I guess.
The other kind of love, well, I don’t know. It’s gotta be rooted in that same kind of love or it’s not going to last long, though, I know that. You can want somebody, you can fantasize about what it might be like to be with them, but if you can’t picture yourself as friends, if you can’t trust them, it’s never gonna be love. Maybe that’s it, or a part of it. Affection, friendship, desire, and trust; I suppose that’s how I know I’ve fallen in love with somebody.
6. Do you think that killing is ever justified?
Hell, ask an easy one, why don’t you?
It’s — complicated. That sounds like a god damn cop out and I know it does, but it’s not always as easy as black and white. Not when you want to look at the world as it is rather than what you want it to be. Do I like the idea of killing people? Do I think it’s good way to get your kicks on a slow Sunday afternoon? Hell no, I don’t. I don’t think that killing is something people should take pleasure in; I don’t think that killing is something that people should take lightly.
I think that anytime you wind up with a situation where there’s the possibility that somebody who walked into it under their own power might never walk back out of it again something got screwed up somewhere along the line. Killing isn’t bloodless, or blameless; killing is ending the life of somebody else, of knowing that their heart’s never gonna beat again because of you, that the last breath they took rushed out of them because of something you did, that their blood spilled out onto the cold damn hard ground because of you and your actions. The instant that you take somebody else’s life you’ve plucked that person out of the world forever, and any good and all the evil they might have had in them is gone because of you.
I wish we lived in a world where the answer was easy, where I could say that killing was never “justified”, because I don’t think it is. But sometimes, when the option is to keep your own hands clean and let someone else get hurt because you refused to act; to let your team die because you weren’t able to pull the trigger; to let — well, to let evil flourish and thrive because you won’t stand up to it and push back against it just as hard as you could … sometimes that can be worse.
It’s not as simple as weighing one life against another and saying “if I kill this guy over here, that guy over there can live and he’s such a better person and I like him better anyway, this guy over here’s on my team so I’m gonna off the guy over there who’s not”. It isn’t, and it never should be. But sometimes in order to protect what’s important, when there’s no other, better option, the people with the power to protect those who can’t protect themselves have to get blood on their hands to do so.
I wish it were another way, but I’d rather die fighting for what’s right with my last breath knowing I’m gonna have to account for the blood on my hands than die standing still and quiet with my hands clean never knowing if I could have made a difference for the better if I’d been willing to get them dirty.
8. Should all people be treated as equal, and have the same rights?
Of course they should. I don’t know why we’re even arguing over this anymore. Everyone should get the same chances as everyone else, the same rights to protect them as they try to live the best life they know how. How isn’t that easy?
We’re not all the same, and I don’t think we should pretend that we’re cookie-cutter versions of the same person chugging on down the assembly line one after the other — I’d be a liar and an idiot to think that. Everybody comes out facing into this world from a different angle than everybody else, looking at the world around us from our own particular points of view, and there’s a hell of a lot of things that go into shaping that, and yeah — some of those things are complicated and can be hard to talk about sometimes. Nobody comes into this world free of a lot of baggage that clings to them right from the first breath they take - for good and for bad. And I think it’s the height of stupidity to pretend that this isn’t true.
What I believe is that no matter who you are, no matter what went into making up all the different parts of you, you’re every bit as deserving of basic god damn respect and decency as anybody else. You shouldn’t have to earn that right, or fight for it — it should, by god, be assumed.
10. Is suicide ever the right choice?
I kinda flew a plane into the god damn icy ass ocean convinced I would be killing myself by doing so, and pretty much would have killed myself except for the dubious wonders of “science”. But knowing it was the only option on the list I had at the time that didn’t end in “and then a whole hell of a lot of other people died too” kind of forced my hand. So my thoughts on this one are a little bit complicated.
12. Is it right to have an intimate relationship with somebody you don’t love?
I don’t think it’s wrong, as long as all parties involved are having a good time and nobody’s lying to anybody else. I think it’s wrong to lie about being in love with someone just to get them naked, but there’s nothing wrong with sex without love so long as nobody’s getting hurt.
14. Have you ever doubted your own beliefs? (Spiritual, philosophical)
Of course I have. If you’ve never questioned your own beliefs, and really thought through why you believe what you do and why you hold true to the principles that motivate you, then I don’t believe that you really get to claim them as your own.
16. What would you consider a fate worse than death?
Living a life knowing that I could have made a difference, or done something to make things better, but that I never did because I was afraid it might be hard. I’d rather go out fighting than live forever knowing I refused to stand up for what was right when the time came,
18. Do you agree with capital punishment?
If you’d have put me in a room with Hitler I would have killed him immediately and with no regrets. His crimes were such that there was no question in my mind that he needed to be put down; the war machine rolled on and fed on the lives of my generation and his were the hands holding the wheel. There’s no prison sentence that makes sense in that scenario.
A guy who shoots and kills two people robbing a convenience store? Do I think someone like that should be executed coldly and calmly by the state? No, I don’t. Maybe I don’t know where the line is when you cross into “too dangerous to be left alive”, but I know it’s not there.
20. What would you like to achieve before you die?
I — don’t know.
There’s a lot of things I’d like to do before I die, but things that I want to achieve? I’d have to get back to you on that one.