Red Hood and The Outlaws # 25
I love Batman. I love him so much that I wrote an article on why he is the greatest superhero; which you can read here. He is one of my all-time favorite superheroes, if not my favorite superhero. For real. No joke. I push myself because of what this fictional character represents.
A man who drove himself to physical and mental perfection. A man who overcomes all obstacles in his way. A man that even the strongest people on the planet (Superman, Lex Luthor, Ras) fear. A man whose moral compass is unshakeable.
And it is here where I must get into the issue of whether Bruce's "No Kill" policy is moral. Even more, I want to delve into the ass whooping he gave Jason for apparently killing The Penguin.
Was he right for doing that?
Well, continue to read because I believe there are no absolutes in life.
Very High Standards
Batman's moral standards have always been one of my favorite aspects of the character. No matter what you do to him he will never cross that line. He will never kill someone and take a life. He will not become...his enemy. His moral stance is perhaps a superpower unto itself.
I especially love Batman's character in the Injustice comics. And i will be writing a detailed article on why Bruce is the most powerful character in that universe very soon. I always loved Batman but his stance in The Injustice Universe and standing up to Superman is just so amazing, and that is perhaps my favorite version of Batman.
However, in this story and this particular issue, I have to question Batman's actions. I mean he goes full hard on Jason. To the point that he destroys his mask with ONE KICK.
He tells him to "Shut Up" with such a venom in his tone that makes me question, is his no-kill policy an addiction or is he just that morally incorruptible?
And I question that because there were many times in the mainstream universe where Bruce had to have others keep him from going over that line.
Examples being "The Death of a Family" story arc. He was hellbent on killing the Joker. That is why the U.N bought Superman in to keep Batman at bay.
Let's not forget when he was about to kill the Joker again during the "Hush" storyline when he thought Joker killed his childhood friend Eliot, a.ka. Hush. It was Jim Gordon who had to stop him from strangling the Joker.
He has even admitted to Jason that he WANTS to kill the Joker in the "Under the Hood" story arc.
Irrational With His Morality
As much as I love Batman...the "no-kill" rule is not helping Gotham. Is killing someone like the Penguin going to stop ALL of the crime in Gotham?
No. Of course not.
But it will strike more fear into criminals who now know that there is a superhero out there who will put you down if you are criminal scum.
Even worse, is that Jason reasons for killing The Penguin had to do with The Penguin being the reason his father went away.
Separating a father from a son is one of the cruelest things you can do to a child. You would think Bruce would understand.
Even more, you would think that Bruce - in all his wisdom - would understand that life is grey. There are no absolutes in life. He is holding everyone he works with up to his impossible standards.
And for someone like Jason who died to criminal violence he has every right to stop and prevent needless death if he has the power to do so.
Jason is not Dick and should not have to live up to that standard because as he said: "I'm My Father's Son."
I love Batman...but in this particular issue I have to say that his character and his myopic view that you are only a hero if "you don't kill and come down to their level" is too stagnate a moral stance to fight crime with.
Jason called him "Old Man" and I have to admit I agree. Bruce seemed like a cranky old man who yells and throws a tantrum everytime he doesn't get what he wants. He has no idea why Jason killed The Penguin. All he knows is that Jason killed... and...because of that, he's wrong.
I wonder does he thinks soldiers are wrong? Does he think the police are wrong? Does he think by allowing people like Joker and Penguin to live - when they deserve to die - is okay?
Some people are so far gone you CANNOT rehabilitate them, and there are many people who have never had a grasp of morals. This is a fact. 1% of the population are psychopaths. They cannot empathize. And 4% are sociopaths.
Not huge numbers but there are people out there who have NO EMPATHY.
Jason is by no means in the wrong and as much as I hate saying it, Bruce was a HUGE ASSHOLE in this issue.
I still love Batman though.
Let me know if you agree or not and pick up the newest issue of the outlaws .