CaptainVere makes the right decision by executing Billy Budd. If CaptainVere lets Billylive the rest of the crew might get the impression that they will not be held accountable fortheir crimes. If the crew feels that they can get away with what ever they want then thereis a chance that they might form a rebellion and have a mutiny. A mutiny would destroythe stability and good name of the ship and the crew. Captain Vere does not want to seethis happen. There are three main reasons Captain Vere makes the right decision byexecuting Billy Budd. These reasons are that if Billy lives then a mutiny might occur,because the law states that a crime as severe as Billy's is punishable by death, and CaptainVere feels sorry for Billy and does not want Billy to suffer with guilt until a martial courtcould give a decision. If Billy is not executed then corruption might occur on the ship and cause amutiny. Captain Vere knows that a mutiny might occur and does not want it to happen. Captain Vere could possibly be using Billy's execution for his crime of killing Claggart asan example for the rest of the crew. It shows the crew what will happen to them if theytry to start a mutiny. After Billy's death CaptainVere obviously feels regret for executingBilly. Captain Vere's last words are "Billy Budd, Billy Budd" (p. 76) show an example ofthis. Those last words might symbolize that Captain Vere killed Billy for the wrongreasons. If CaptainVere uses Billy's death for an example to the
rest of the crew then itmight not necessarily be the wrong reason. CaptainVere has to decide between one lifeand the lives of the entire crew. No matter what Captain Vere's reasons are he does makethe right decision. Another reason CaptainVere might of executed Billy Budd is because CaptainVerefollows the law to the letter. The law states that mutiny is punishable to by death. Somereaders might not see this accidental murder as mutiny, but killing a superior officer in theBritish navy is considered mutiny. In Captain Vere's decision he shows the crew that noinfractions of the law will be tolerated. In the story CaptainVere is described as "nevertolerating an infraction of discipline" (p. 16). This trait could be the reason for Billy'sdeath. Another reason Captain Vere might execute Billy Budd is that he does not wantBilly to suffer with his extreme guilty until a martial court can see his case. Captain Vereprobably had a personal attachment to Billy. This is evident when Captain Vere says,"struck dead by an angel of God! Yet the angel must hang!" (p. 51). This statementimplies Captain Vere's true feelings for Billy. If Captain Vere had let a martial court trythe case then they would most likely come to the same conclusion. Because of this factCaptain Vere did not find it necessary to make Billy wait for a trial. Captain Vere made the right decision by executing Billy for his crimes. Althoughthe decision was controversial it kept stability among the crew. The crew's fate is moreimportant than any individual sailor's fate. If Captain Vere had made the oppositedecision than there probably would be a very horrible fate for the Bellipotent. Billy Buddcould be considered a tragic hero. In his short life Billy touched more lives than mostpeople do in there entire lives. Billy is somebody that most readers would agree is a tragichero. Even though Billy Budd is so great, Captain Vere made the right decision.