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Old March 26th, 2013, 7:21 pm
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Re: The Death Eaters: Group Character Analysis

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Originally Posted by MerryLore View Post
I don't see it as selfishness. When DD says "if you truly loved Lily, you'd do X, Y and Z", Snape does X, Y and Z with no argument.
I see it as selfishness. Snape was just like the Malfoys and Regulus - he was happy to benefit from the suffering of others. He did not care who suffered as long as he gained. He just took issue when he was going to experience the same suffering he was willing to cause others. Just like the Malfoys - Lucius was willing to murder other people's children, to use other people's children as pawns to commit murder. Yet, somehow he comes over feeling sorry for himself, as if he's been wronged, when he is given a taste of his own medicine. IMO, this is what Death Eaters are -selfish human beings, who are willing to hurt and destroy, but consider themselves wronged when their malevolent master hurts them instead of some victim who "doesn't matter" because s/he doesn't matter to them.

Personally, I think that someone who truly loved Lily would never, ever, ever join a group that was murdering Muggleborns. Personally, I think that someone who loved Lily would never, ever want to see her suffer the grief of losing her loved ones. But that's just my take on love.

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Plus the fact that he continues to do things for her 16 years after she died, with absolutely no hope of anything in return, speaks for itself.
Personally, I don't think that the only reason to do something for someone you claim to love is to get something in return. So I don't think that doing something "with no hope of anything in return" is spectacular. And as for having no hope of anything in return after Lily's death - did Snape have hope of "something in return" before she died? Lily's love was not something that would ever, ever, ever have been "owed" to Snape "in return" for anything. She was a person with her own feelings and nobody is ever entitled to have their feelings returned. No matter what. And no matter who they are.

However, Snape was doing it to make himself feel better, IMO. Snape wanted to be able to tell himself he was doing something for Lily. However, the innate selfishness of a Death Eater prevented him from seeing Lily's perspective in any of his actions. Before or after her death.


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And this for a women who cut him off, chose another man and bore than man a child.
I'm sorry, how is Lily exerting her basic right to choose her own partner and have a child with said partner remotely relevant? Personally, I do not think that Lily's freedom to choose her partner and her side in the war is more relevant than the fact that Snape was a big part of the reason for her death.

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These seem to be common traits of many characters in the books. I can think of several, but will only mention one. Dumbledore was selfish and lacked empathy when he went through his pro-Grindelwald phase and Ariana died. It was her death that brought him back to reality. Reminds me of Snape. The DEs are a group of murderers. They are taking these characteristics to the next horrible level.
And yet, Dumbledore only talked. He never acted on the rubbish he was talking. Snape joined up, and was a member of the most evil group in the wizarding world. Snape was a part of something which was destroying lives. He wasn't just talking, he was busily destroying lives for personal gain.

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I agree - they aren't "good ways to compare or rank people" and skills and achievements are much better.
Yet this is the way the Death Eaters wanted to compare people. This is the way Snape, the Malfoys, Bellatrix, Regulus et al. wanted to compare people. This is the way they wanted to put themselves at the top of the pile. This is the grounds on which they deluded themselves that they had the right to play god for personal gain.

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What you have listed does "go beyond petty" but in my quote I was referring to discrimination in general, which can cover an entire range of activities. This is what I said:
In a discussion about the Death Eaters, the type of evil they perpetrated in the name of extreme twisted bigotry is relevant. The type of bigotry they embraced, either as true believers, or as self-serving thugs who believed that "there is no good and evil" goes way beyond petty. And IMO, bigotry of any kind goes way beyond petty. Bigotry is dangerous, there's no such thing as a petty little bit of bigotry.

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what I originally saidDiscrimination in any form is usually nothing more than a person wanting to feel superior to another person because they feel powerless in some way and they don't like it. It's taking the easy way out - rather than working your butt off, you choose to subjugate other people based on something which, on the face of it, is really petty.
I don't think that bigots feel powerless. Look at the thugs like the Malfoys, Bellatrix and Regulus Black - I see nothing to indicate that they felt powerless. They were arrogant and happy to believe that their bloodline gave them the right to play god.

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In this particular quote, I was comparing Slytherins to DEs. Let me requote myself:
what I originally saidNot all Slytherins were DEs, but most DEs were Slytherins, I believe JKR said. I think most Slytherins find healthy ways to excel, while those who joined the DEs chose a much more evil path. The Malfoys as a family, based on what i read on Pottermore, were always interested in power for the family. One Malfoy even tried to win the hand of Queen Elizabeth 1st.
And I pointed out how spitefully that Malfoy responded to a refusal. How entitled and vindictive of him. I don't think that cursing someone who turns you down is a healthy way to excel, or a healthy way to behave as a human being, at all.


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Yes. He was a spy and as a spy was most likely not involved in direct murder and torture. If I remember correctly, JKR said he only "saw things." I think he tuned most of it out and didn't allow it to affect him until Lily was targeted. I'm not saying he approved, however. He shut down empathy.
Can you please provide a quote for JKR saying that Snape only "saw things". He was not a member of the boy scouts, he was a member of a depraved group of murdering bigots. And IMO, he was completely selfish in being a part of such evil for personal gain. One can call it "shutting it out", or one can call it not giving a toss who suffered as long as Severus Snape got what he wanted. Just like every other Death Eater.

There is no evidence that Snape did nothing as a Death Eater. And if he "saw" things, even as a spy, what's to stop him from murdering? Voldemort did not keep his thugs around for their conversational skills.

And even if he was "only" spying, that would cost lives. He was spying for a genocidal hate group - his information was not about stock prices or job promotions. It was information that would destroy lives. Which was irrelevant as long as he got what he wanted - IMO, a sign of Death Eater selfishness.
The prophecy certainly did, though one death was not the life Snape would have preferred to see lost.

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Peter always seemed to go for the bullies. I think he enjoyed that feeling of power by association over a helpless victim.
Or, as in canon, Peter joined because he wanted to save his own skin. Peter did not join the Death Eaters to witness torture; he joined because he would rather betray those closest to him than die.


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