"Someone ever tries to kill you, you try to kill 'em right back."–Mal Reynolds, "Our Mrs. Reynolds," Firefly
If you don't know the show Firefly this may seem ever-so-slightly random, and violent. But let me give you some context (and no spoilers, because the reveal on this episode is fun).
Our daring Captain Mal has wound up accidentally married to a girl from the town they just rescued, traded as payment for their service. This doesn't sit well with Mal, who didn't really plan on getting married (have you ever been to a surprise wedding?) and doesn't really want this girl that much and is having trouble expressing that fact delicately.
The girl, Saffron, certainly is hurt and ashamed to be caught in this awkward situation, and she asks Mal if she will be killed because she is so displeasing. Mal is appalled—what kind of awful planet would do something like that? He tells her that she shouldn't stand for that sort of thing and, essentially, that she shouldn't let herself be killed.
This is probably my favorite Firefly episode (maybe; it's hard to choose) and part of the reason I love it so is how much it speaks to Mal's character. One of his highest values is the equal personhood of every human being he meets. He only kills in fair fights. He doesn't let his Ambassador get dishonored as the equivalent to property. And he doesn't let his accidental wife think that she is less valuable than any other person in the 'verse even if he doesn't want to be married to her.
I think this quote is not so much about killing (beyond... like, the surface part of it) but is really about empowerment. If someone pushes you around, stand up for yourself. Push back. Talk back. Fight. Because you have a right to a voice and a fair fight no matter who you are or where you're from or what your social status is. You're a person, and people inherently have a significance that warrants a kind of treatment non-persons like Reavers or rocks don't get.
You're important enough that you have the right to fight for yourself. How cool is that?
I just love this quote. So much, that I copied it down on a pink piece of paper in cursive and stuck it in my jewelry box in the place where sentimental photos are supposed to go. But don't worry, this quote is better.
FINALLY. I HAVE FINISHED THIS TAG. It was kind of painful. Next Friday, look forward to something villainous. Or bloginous. I don't know yet.