Okay, so I vomited some Tony feels in Pooka’s inbox this morning and I think they’re almost coherent enough to make a post so here have a post on my thoughts on Tony’s moral center (which of course are also thoughts on Steve’s moral center, or Tony’s perception of Steve’s moral center, because you simply cannot have a discussion about one without the other).
When it comes to Tony, I feel like I really get where Ewing’s coming from with this? Like I saw you talking about Reed vs Tony, and if THAT’S what he means, like, no, that’s not the way Tony handles things/processes things. BUT, Tony IS kinda capable of a different-but-same kind of horror because of who he is. No, he’s not gonna go out and say “I figured out the best way to fix all of people and just do what I say and I’ve got this”, because that’s a Reed thing, but Tony IS very willing to like… refuse to cede control of his shit to other people, and sacrifice some for the whole, yadda yadda, so there’s like, that lurking potential. And I think ultimately Tony doesn’t THINK of himself as an actual good guy. Not the way Steve is. Because for as much of a utilitarian Tony says he is, he’s still self-loathing enough/hero-worships Steve enough that he feels like deontology is somehow like… a purer, gooder moral system, you know? One that Tony’s not capable of because well 1.) sometimes it isn’t practical, but more importantly 2.) tony feels like his motivations for being good are damaged.
Like, I think that’s kinda the key to Tony, is he will ALWAYS feel like he’s got the wrong motivations for doing good, like thing John Constantine. And since the urge to do good is coming from this place of like darkness and fear of that darkness within him or guilt or whatever, Tony will always feel like he’s not an ACTUAL good guy, not like Steve is. And Tony will feel like his practicality is also a SYMPTOM of that insidious like, darkness inside him, like the reason that he CAN do the practical thing and be the utilitarian is in itself a kind of moral failing of his? Because if he was like, purer and gooder somehow he wouldn’t think of the practical side and would be all black and white like steve.
But also FUCK YOU STEVE for making him feel this way (so says Tony when he gets introverted) because it’s RIGHT to look at the practical side and sometimes you fucking HAVE TO so FUCK YOU for putting Tony in the position where he has to feel like the lesser moral person just because he’s being realistic. It’s STILL A MORAL POSITION, it’s not amoral! It’s not evil!
Anyhoo. Tony. </3