Captain America: Civil War
In this movie, the Avengers are faced with an internal dilemma that divides them and causes them to interact with physical violence that leads to an array of death and damages along the way. This dilemma is derived from a United Nations sanctioned document, called the Sokovia Accords. This document forces any enhanced person to be regulated by the UN. Captain America, Falcon, Scarlet Witch, Hawkeye and Ant man feel that forcing them to sign that document would be a violation of their freedom and could ultimately prevent them from instinctually saving lives. Ironman, War Machine, Spider-Man, Black Widow, Black Panther and Vision initially feel regulation is necessary after all of the death and destruction in Sokovia.
Helmut Zemo, a terrorist who lost family in the Avengers fight against Ultron in Sokovia, blames the Avengers and is driven by revenge. He orchestrates the divide in the civil war amongst the Avengers because he feels the only way to beat them is to destroy them internally. By the end of the movie it is debatable as to whether or not Zemo succeeded. There is still divide and separation amongst the Avengers, but tensions have eased. Black Panther altered his position of revenge when he found out that Zemo was responsible for the death of his father, not the Winter Soldier. He even goes as far as to help Captain America and Winter Soldier to hide in Wakanda.
In a universe where enhanced individuals are powerful enough to be considered weapons of mass destruction (WMD’s), should they be regulated? There are two compelling sides to the argument. I see valid reasoning to both sides. On one hand, you somewhat handcuff the abilities of enhanced individuals to save lives by not allowing them to use their instincts that could prevent potential catastrophic disaster. On the other hand, their non-regulated and instinctual actions have led to several casualties along the way.
In the end, both sides are right, but who gets to make the rules? Why is a UN panel more capable of making a rational decision than Tony Stark, Captain America, even Ant Man when they almost nuked an entire city in the first Avengers movie. If it wasn’t for Tony Stark a whole city and it’s population would have been vaporized. Instead, his quick action saved New York and defeated the enemy and alien Chitauri fleet. On the other hand, in cases such as the Winter Soldier, Hydra has shown the ability use mind control. If that would happen to say, the Hulk, things could get real ugly and quick.
In the end, I think some sort of regulation is inevitable or chaos could ensue. However, it shouldn’t come at the cost of freedom or loss of innocent lives. Much like the gun control debate that is currently a hot button in the US, both sides have compelling arguments. However, fighting about it won’t solve anything, it just creates a bigger divide. Whether you are pro Captain America, pro Tony Stark, for gun control, or against it, there needs to be calm level-headed discussions about what makes sense. At the end of the movie, Cap left Tony a letter that gives us the sense that cooler heads seem to be prevailing, even though he didn’t sign the Sokovia Accords.
I’m somewhat torn about both and have strong feelings both ways. Obviously, one is a comic book movie and one is real life. However, both sides should have a voice and be heard. No one wins in a tyrannical society or when freedoms are lost. However, whether you are an Avenger or a governing political leader, corruption has happened and is a constant threat. Nazi Germany, the Russian and Young Turks Revolutions are real life examples of what can happen when government goes bad. All three happened within some of our current grandparents or great grandparents lifetimes.
Although no one wants to see children murdered in mass shootings in real life or children losing their lives collaterally by an Avenger, it is important to remember that creating legislation without considering the bigger picture can and has led to tyrannical situations in history. In the end, I don’t know if there is a solution that would make everyone happy for the Avengers or the gun control debate, but it’s worth discussing.