BACK

MERCY2   3'1m*f RT: Salvation, grace, mercy, justice, fairness

(RT == Readers' Theater: requires little or no memorization,
little or no rehearsal. An indefinite number of reporters are
salted throughout the audience.)

KING -- (enters wearing ornate robe and crown, crosses to
podium) Good morning. I have a brief announcement to make. As
you know, my palace guard has recently crushed a rebellion in my
kingdom and all ten rebels who were not killed outright were
given a fair trial and were convicted of treason and were
condemned to death. This morning eight of ten of those rebels
were put to death as prescribed by law.

REPORTER -- Your Majesty, you said only eight of the ten were
put to death?

KING -- Yes.

REPORTER -- What happened to the other two?

KING -- I'm about to set them free.

REPORTER -- Your Majesty, why aren't the two remaining rebels
being executed with the other prisoners?

KING -- I have decided to spare their lives.

REPORTER -- But THEY ARE going to be executed... some day,
aren't they?

KING -- No. They're not.

REPORTER -- That doesn't seem fair.

KING -- That's because you don't understand the gift of mercy.

REPORTER -- Can you explain the gift of mercy, Your Majesty?

KING -- If you gave a contribution to two charities, how would
you feel if a third charity came along and sued you because you
didn't give them a gift too?

REPORTER -- That wouldn't be fair if it's my money, I can give
it to whoever I want.

KING -- That's right because the concept of fairness does not
apply to the giving of a gift. As king and sovereign over this
kingdom, I have the power to give life as a gift to whomever I
want. But I'm not obligated to give the gift to ANYONE.

REPORTER -- So, you're just setting these two rebels free?

KING -- Yes.

REPORTER -- Are there conditions for their release?

KING -- If there were conditions, it wouldn't be a gift. It
would be an obligation. I have no obligation to these rebels.

REPORTER -- Surely, you're not releasing the rebels
unconditionally!

KING -- That's exactly what I'm doing.

REPORTER -- But why?

KING -- Because I thought that these particular rebels could be
useful to me.

REPORTER -- How can rebels be useful?

KING -- I have some work to do that I don't want to do myself. I
saved these rebels so that they could do my work for me.

REPORTER -- But if the work is not a condition of their release,
how can you be sure they won't just skip town?

KING -- Along with a gift usually comes gratitude. I'm counting
on their gratitude to motivate them to do the work.

REPORTER -- Why not save ALL of the rebels and put them to work?

KING -- It's a matter of justice. If my subjects saw that I
spared the lives of ALL the rebels, they would conclude that
there is no penalty for rebellion. Extending mercy to SOME looks
like mercy. Extending mercy to ALL looks like a lack of justice.

REPORTER -- But what about the other rebels, the ones you put to
death? Weren't they just as capable as these?

KING -- I didn't extend my mercy to these two rebels because of
their intelligence or for their capability. I chose them for
their loyalty, for their perseverance and because they're TEAM
players, people I know will want to do my work and who will work
WITH me. Now, if you'll excuse me, I have to put my converted
rebels to work. (exits)

REPORTER -- Thank you, your majesty.

2013 Bob Snook. Conditions for use:
Do not sell any part of this script, even if you rewrite it.
Pay no royalties, even if you make money from performances.
You may reproduce and distribute this script freely,
but all copies must contain this copyright statement.
http://www.bobsnook.org  email: bob@bobsnook.org

BACK