Now, in the past few months you have no doubt heard many allegations about my client. People have called him a “serial killer.” Others claim that he’s beyond redemption. Some claim that he’s unfit to bear the “most powerful weapon in the universe.” And some people foolishly believe that to accept Hal Jordan as Green Lantern means to cast Kyle Rayner into limbo, or worse; to kill the successor.
I’m not here to change minds. I’m not here to sway your way of thinking. I’m only here to state facts, and hopefully allow you to see my client; Hal Jordan in a new light, and allow the evidence to decide his fate.
Hal Jordan a Serial Killer?
The most serious charge leveled against Hal Jordan is that he’s a serial killer. Now this is just erroneous on several levels. The acts that his detractors are referring to took place in Green Lantern #49 & 50. Now if the acts in question were murders, Mr. Jordan would be more accurately classified as a mass murderer. However mass murder doesn’t sound nearly as negative as serial killer, and character assassination is the name of the game, hence the more vicious title is the one heaped upon my client.
But Hal Jordan is not even a mass murderer.
He killed two people. Kilowog and Sinestro.
The latter was guilty of genocide and the former who has since been resurrected. This is by no means to make light of their deaths, but only to point out the lengths at which Mr. Jordan’s enemies have gone to paint him as worse than he actually is.
Now allow me to paint a picture.
I’m sure everyone here has had a bad day at work. I’m sure, if we’re all being honest, we’ve even contemplated acts of violence against co-workers or employees. Now we may have not acted upon those thought, but that spark was there.
Imagine that your hometown was destroyed. Everything that you knew, every landmark from your childhood memories, was gone, wiped from existence. The house that you grew up in reduced to ash. The tree where you kissed your first crush obliterated. The restaurant where you took your prom date rendered nothing but a memory.
Now imagine that you weren’t given time to mourn. Imagine that your employers didn’t give you chance for a private good-bye to a place that provided your first experiences in life. How would you feel? I reckon that you’d be a mite upset. And who would blame you?
Hal Jordan: Beyond Redemption?
Mr. Jordan’s detractors claim that his previous acts place him beyond redemptions reach.
I would argue that not only is he worthy of redemption, but that he has more than atoned for his transgressions. He has not only renounced his former ways, but also he even sacrificed his life so that billions of others could live.
How many of you would boldly sacrifice your life to preserve life on the planet. My client, Hal Jordan did so, without a second thought. I ask you; does that sound like the act of a “serial killer?”
Furthermore, Mr. Jordan has since dedicated his existence to making the world a better place. That doesn’t sound very criminal does it?
Hal Jordan: Unfit For The Ring
One of the more hurtful things said about my client is that because of his actions he’s unfit to wear the ring, uniform and title; Green Lantern. Those are perhaps the most stinging of the comments hurled at Mr. Jordan, not only because they are simply untrue but because those who stand against him don’t acknowledge a significant piece of evidence detrimental to their case.
In Green Lantern #50, the Guardians themselves not only resurrect Sinestro, but give him a Green Lantern ring. Let me repeat that; they give a criminal the most powerful weapon in the universe.
Now this isn’t some guy who stumbles into an alley, this is perhaps one of the Green Lantern Corps greatest enemies. He was one of the few Green Lanterns to be corrupted by the power, and they give him a ring. Sinestro was guilty of genocide, yet the Guardians of the Universe deem him worthy of a ring. But Hal Jordan isn’t worthy of a ring because of his actions. I hope I’m not the only one that this sounds wrong to.
Hal Jordan as Green Lantern Equates to the End of Kyle
Hal’s opponents would like you to believe that Hal returning as Green Lantern means that Kyle won’t be Green Lantern anymore. Now this just plain isn’t true. This isn’t 1994, and there isn’t a “one and only Green Lantern” anymore. Just because Hal is returning as Green Lantern doesn’t mean that Kyle won’t be around.
Does anyone in their right mind think that John Stewart isn’t going to be over in the JLA? Or perhaps with Hal returning Alan Scott will stop appearing in JSA? That is just a preposterous line of logic, yet that’s want Mr. Jordan’s detractors want you to believe.
In fact there is actually proof of the opposite. Hal Jordan returning as Green Lantern is going to herald the return of the Green Lantern Corps, which by definition means more than one Green Lantern. Could it be possible that one of that Corp would be Kyle Rayner? Not if you listen to some people.
When Ted Knight killed the Rag Doll, in an attempt to prevent future harm befalling his children, there was no cry for him to be stripped of the name Starman.
When Jack Knight killed his brother’s killer, he wasn’t considered less than a hero.
When Superman killed three super powered criminals, because they “threatened” to do “something,” he wasn’t deemed unworthy to be a hero.
Atom Smasher has both killed and used time travel to “fix” a personal tragedy, but I doubt that anyone would say Al Rothstein is beyond redemption.
The second and third Hourmen both attempted to use time travel to right what they perceived as past wrongs. But in the eyes of many they are still viewed as “heroes.”
Why, I recall Superman “rewinding” time to save Lois Lane from an earthquake. Was it a selfish act; yes, but that doesn’t make him any less of a hero.
So, ladies and gentlemen, in the upcoming months as the story unfolds, I implore you to keep an open mind and allow the evidence to redeem Hal Jordan.
I thank you for your time.
Mathan L. Erhardt, Esq.
Erhardt, Torres and Associates