I have seen the terrorist, and he is me. And you. And all of us. So says Evey (Natalie Portman), an acolyte of V (Hugh Weaving), the swashbuckling savior of future England who disguises himself as Guy Fawkes.
But don’t worry, because being a terrorist is now a good thing. As we've been told by the media, one man's terrorist is another man's freedom fighter…or masked superhero as the case may be.
In fact, according to The New York Daily News' critic, Jaimi Bernard, even the term "suicide bombing" is now relative. "One person's idea of social liberation through symbolic fireworks is another person's suicide bombing," she insists in her review of V for Vendetta.
So even though V threatens to detonate a load of explosives strapped to his chest, killing dozens of innocent people at the BBC (oh, excuse me, BFC) if they don't give him air-time, just think of him as Batman — a little overly-dramatic and conflicted perhaps, but also sexy and an undeniable force for good.
I can see him this way because of all the Wachowski Brothers have taught me. My eyes have been opened, and I am no longer an automaton of the Right-wing religious-military-industrial complex.
Thanks to this "parable about terrorism and totalitarianism" (Roger Ebert) I have been "prodded to think" (The San Francisco Chronicle). And I now think that the Bush administration blew up the twin towers and tried to blow up two other U.S. targets on 9/11 in order to scare Americans into giving them more power. I think that conservatives hate art, literature, and music—especially jazz music—and want to lock it all away because, well, they’re just mean like that.
I think that Catholics are in league with Republicans, and that together it is they, and not radical Islamists, who would like to exterminate all homosexuals and execute anyone that produces material critical of the Church-State. I think it is Christians who persecute people for reading the Koran and not Muslims who persecute people for reading the Bible.
I think that the West's military personnel are the ones who place hoods over innocent people's heads then mercilessly torture and kill them, and that broadcasts of Islamo-fascists doing so are so much laughable propaganda.
But most of all, in true V style, I think that documents, like buildings, are only symbols, and that burning them can change the world. Therefore, I propose that we storm the National Archives and torch the Constitution—the document responsible for unleashing the Great Evil that is America.
Megan Basham is the author of Beside Every Successful Man: A Woman's Guide To Having It All
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