Billy Budd: Farewell to the Rights of Man! Lieutenant Seymour:
Wyatt, we do not deal with justice here, but with the law.
Lieutenant Wyatt: Was not the one conceived to serve the other? Billy Budd: It's wrong to flog a man. It's against his being a man. Master At Arms Claggert: The sea is calm you said. Peaceful. Calm above, but below a world of gliding monsters preying on their fellows. Murderers, all of them. Only the strongest teeth survive. And who's to tell me it's any different here on board, or yonder on dry land?" Lieutenant Seymour: Aye sir, that is your right. Captain Vere: It's no right. Which one of us here have rights? It's my duty and I must perform it. Jenkins: [as Billy tastes his first shipboard meal] Like it Billy? Taste good? Billy Budd: It's hot and there's a lot of it. I like everything about it except the flavor. Captain Vere: You know Seymour, there are some men who cannot stand too much perfection. They see it as a disease, which must be stamped out at it's first rash showing. Captain Vere: I am just a man, not fit to do the work of God... or the Devil. Captain Vere: Master-at-Arms, you possess too much knowledge for such a lowly post. Master At Arms Claggert: Why, thank you, Sir. Captain Vere: [impatiently] It's no flattery, Mr. Claggert. It's a melancholy fact! [Billy and the Dansker have just witnessed a flogging] Billy Budd: What was his crime? The Dansker, sailmaker: Any one of many possible reasons. Billy Budd: You mean you don't know what he did? The Dansker, sailmaker: Flogging. The only solution to every problem. I warrant even the culprit himself doesn't know! It was just... his... turn!