26 November, 2010

more thoughts about zombies

it's considered not just self-defense, but actually brave and an act of compassion to kill family members and friends who have become zombies. Not being able to kill them is a sign of being too sentimental.

Why is it compassionate to kill a zombie?

Because they look different?

Because they can't think very well?

Because they're chasing and eating people, something their old self wouldn't have wanted to do?

Because they're presumably constantly hungry, which wouldn't be a pleasant experience, I guess?

I mean, I think it's fine to kill someone who is trying to eat you, but I'm curious about the compassion angle, the idea that If You Really Love Someone, you won't let them live as a zombie.


  1. Well, I don't like the idea of losing my mind. Zombies aren't portrayed as having any self awareness, and since I wouldn't want to be mindless like that, if I became a zombie, I'd want someone to kill me.

  2. Hmm. Zombies.

    I don't know. I'm not keen on the compassion angle myself, but the way I think of it, it goes something like...

    I don't know. Something like, well. I guess this depends on the type of zombie we're talking about. But most zombie types that I know of, aren't the people they once were. They aren't even people, I think. Just, reanimated corpses, shambling around because of whatever (virus, magic, bees, whatever). And I guess that can be a type of desecration/violation of the body/corpse/dead (I'm not sure of the word[s] I want, here.). So it'd be compassionate to stop them from shambling around like that? I mean, I suppose I wouldn't want my body shambling around after I died, that wouldn't be cool. It'd be... an insult to my memory or something. I don't know.

    I don't know if that made any sense.

  3. Well people say that but it's obviously not true because lots of zombies sort of remember how to do things they did when they were human, or will go to the same places and stuff. So it's not just as if any random spirit moved into the body--it must in some way be the same person, just a lot dumber and a lot more interested in braaaaaains..

  4. Well, I did say it depended on the type of zombie... I actually haven't seen too much of ones like you're talking about. ._.; Then again, most of my "zombie experience" in recent times only comes from the Dead Rising games. In which they most certainly did die before shambling about. *shrug*

    Also: Cell. Which is more like you're talking about. Though I'm not sure they counted as zombies. Didn't want to eat brains. Just be a hive-mind or something. I need to re-read that.

    I love zombies anyhow. Even though they scare me. It's a weird relationship.
    But I'm rambling now. Don't mind me.

  5. You can compare it to a vampire or something. A creature; a human that has lost its soul. Not that I believe in such a thing, but the point is that without this "soul" the "essence" of the being is non-existent, therefore you aren't really killing a loved one, you are killing something else.

  6. I'm not arguing that killing a zombie is wrong but I'm curious why it's an act of compassion toward the loved one if it is indeed not the loved one.

  7. It is an act of compassion because this soulless creature is walking around wearing a costume that looks like a loved one. If I were to become a zombie, "I" would no longer exist, yet this zombie-fella would walk around in my shoes - that fucking sucks. It would therefore be an act of compassion to kill the zombie that walks around wearing my body.

  8. I don't know, I feel that a lot of what is being said about zombies, including here, is an awful lot like what is being said by many people about autistic people.

    Zombies don't have meaningful awareness or real consciousness, well, neither do autistics.

    Zombies are just shells of the people they would otherwise have been had they not been "stolen" by their disease: yup, I've heard that one before!

    Zombies lack real souls or other properties necessary for meaningful humanity. ... uh huh.

    The thing that really bothers me has to do with the idea that zombies aren't the people they were before they were infected and that because of this it is somehow compassionate to kill them. Even if this was true, why is the zombie's welfare, as a zombie, not important as well? What if the zombie is doing quite well as a zombie, thank you very much, and is content and does not want to be killed because the zombie is okay with being a zombie? Why must we view the zombie's well-being through the lens of our own prejudice -- our own preconceived notion of what the zombie "ought" to be, that is not zombified. (does any of this seem familiar to anyone?)

    ... as for whether or not I'd shoot a zombie I'd have to say I would. I wouldn't do it because I feel oppressor's compassion towards it, though. I think I'd just shoot them because they try to gnaw on my brains so I can't really conceive a way for us to peacefully coexist...

  9. ..Well, if I were suddenly very likely to try and kill someone I'd think it would be respectful to my wishes to stop me, because I don't really want to kill people, but if I wanted to kill someone that would change, wouldn't it?