Election Day is November 3rd! Make sure your voice is heard
No Fear Act 4 Scene 6
No Fear Act 4 Scene 6 Page 7

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GLOUCESTER

140I see it feelingly.

GLOUCESTER

I do understand, by touch.

LEAR

What, art mad? A man may see how this world goes with no eyes. Look with thine ears. See how yon justice rails upon yon simple thief. Hark in thine ear: change places and, handy-dandy, which is the justice, which is the thief? Thou hast seen a farmer’s dog bark at a beggar?

LEAR

What, are you crazy? You don’t need eyes to see how the world works. Look with your ears. Look how the judge yells at a simple thief. Listen. But mix them up, have them switch places, and do you think you’d be able to tell which one is which? Have you seen a farmer’s dog bark at a beggar?

GLOUCESTER

Ay, sir.

GLOUCESTER

Yes, sir.

LEAR

And the creature run from the cur? There thou mightst behold the great image of authority: a dog’s obeyed in office.
Thou rascal beadle, hold thy bloody hand.
Why dost thou lash that whore? Strip thine own back.
Thou hotly lust’st to use her in that kind
For which thou whipp’st her. The usurer hangs the cozener.
Through tattered clothes great vices do appear;
Robes and furred gowns hide all. Plate sin with gold,
And the strong lance of justice hurtless breaks.
Arm it in rags, a pigmy’s straw does pierce it.
None does offend—none, I say, none. I’ll able 'em.
Take that of me, my friend, who have the power
To seal th' accuser’s lips. Get thee glass eyes,
And like a scurvy politician seem
To see the things thou dost not. Now, now, now, now,
Pull off my boots. Harder, harder. So.

LEAR

And you saw how the beggar ran from the mutt? That’s authority! Even a dog is obeyed sometimes. You stupid cop, stop your violence! Why are you whipping that whore? You should be whipping yourself, since you lust after her and yearn to do the same thing for which you’re punishing her. One criminal punishes another. Poor men’s sins are much more noticeable than rich men’s. Cover up a crime with gold and the arm of justice can’t touch it. But dress the crime in rags and it’s caught easily. Everyone sins. You can’t blame anyone for it anyone, I say. I’ll vouch for that. Believe me, my friend, since I have the power to stop the prosecutors. Get yourself some glass eyes, and pretend to see things you can’t, like a crooked politician. Now, now, now, now. Pull off my boots. Harder, harder. Like that.

EDGAR

(aside) O matter and impertinency mixed! Reason in madness!

EDGAR

(to himself) Oh, wisdom and absurdity mixed up together! Reason in madness!