Ender's Game Dilemma
Ender faces a serious dilemma in the book, Ender’s Game by Orson Scott Card - Ender's Game Dilemma introduction. He is staying at the new bugger planet and is searching the planet; during his search he encounters a familiar structure, only to realize that it is the structure from his fantasy game. Upon further examination, he finds a cocoon and realizes it can bring back the buggers. Ender must decide whether he wants to help bring back the bugger race, or whether he wants to end their existence forever, thus posing a moral dilemma for him about his respect.
Ender chooses to help bring back the bugger race, which is the correct decision. The buggers tell Ender, “We did not mean to murder, and when we understood, we never came again” (321). The buggers simply misunderstood the humans and their level of intellect, and that misunderstanding is what led to the war and the First Invasion. The humans also misunderstood the bugger’s intentions, which led to further conflict, such as the 2nd and 3rd Invasion. Upon hearing the Bugger’s explanation, Ender decides on what he will do.
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He says, “’I’ll carry you’… ‘I’ll go from world to world until I find a time and place where you can come awake in safety” (321). Ender decides that it is best to bring back the Bugger race, for if they are understood, peace will be created among the buggers and the humans. Ender realizes that the two races can get along, share their experiences and intellectual insight, and improve the universe, for they are the only known intelligent life forms. The buggers tell Ender that “We thought we were the only thinking beings in the universe” (321).
The buggers misunderstood the intellect of the humans, thus leading into conflict; but when the buggers realize that humans have similar thinking capabilities to their own, they apologized. Ender’s decision is correct because many things happen on accident simply because of misunderstood intentions. Ender learns to understand the culture of the buggers, and learns to get along with them. As long as each species forgives each other and understands each other to prevent future conflict, Ender’s choice of helping the buggers live was the right decision.
Ender realizes that both of his alternatives can pose serious consequences which will lead to several implications. He realizes that bringing back the buggers can threaten mankind’s existence; “There flashed through his mind a dozen images of human beings being killed by buggers” (320) Ender sees that if he nurtures the buggers back to health, there is a possibility that they might strike again, and humanity will be at risk. Ender may feel a sense of betrayal to the years of work in the I. F and the people of earth, for bringing the buggers back will put all the years of work that the citizens of earth have contributed in vain.
This would prove that he has a respect for other species, but values his own safety and the safety of his race over the welfare of other species. After finally defeating the buggers, Mazer says to Ender that “They’ll never attack us again. You did it. You” (297). Ender goes through years of hard work and training with a goal of defeating the buggers. If Ender helps the buggers, all years of work that he and other workers of the I. F have gone through to eliminate the buggers will have been for nothing.
If Ender chooses this alternative, he will learn that he can trust others, and that he respects other species. But Ender will also learn that he builds trust too easily, and he is easily deceived. Because Ender was able to hear the buggers’ side of the story, he was able to see that he could trust them, thus proving to himself that he is able to trust others. Yet Ender also realizes that if he doesn’t help the buggers, they will die. While Ender was holding the bugger queen cocoon, the buggers tell him that “[if you] did not forgive us, she thought…we will surely die” (320).
If Ender to decides that eliminating the risk of an invasion by the buggers is more important than a possible future of a multi race civilization, he will learn that he has no respect for species other than his own. Ender will also learn that it is very difficult for him to build trust in people, for he will not forgive the buggers even after they apologize. If Ender chooses the first alternative, he will prove to himself that he has no respect for other species; but if Ender chooses the second alternative, he may betray everything he has been working for.
Ender solves his dilemma after hearing the bugger’s side of the story. The buggers only attacked because they misunderstand what the humans had to offer. Ender understands the bugger’s true intentions, and is able to see that they will not strike again. Ender realizes that peace can be created between the two species, and thus making Ender want to bring back the buggers. Ender chooses to bring back the buggers, which proves that he has respect for other species, thus solving his moral dilemma.