What are some arguments that can explain why the Reign of Terror during the French Revoltuion was unnecessay and evil?

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Ashley Kannan | Middle School Teacher | (Level 3) Distinguished Educator

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One particular argument that can be made as to how the Reign of Terror was evil would be in the reveling in loss of life that was so much a part of it.  Robespierre and other leaders came to depend on the guillotine to provide justice.  This is evil in how it embraces death and the taking of life as a way to solve differing political discourse.  Another point as to the evil nature of the Reign of Terror would lie in the discarding of individual checks against encroaching authority.  Those advocating for wider use of the guillotine were discarding eyewitness testimony and individual representation in sentencing people to death.  The ease with which human life was being taken could also be seen as an example of evil.  Finally, I would suggest that Robespierre and his "mountain" of allies sought to only increase their own power, seeking to consolidate their own control.  There was not much in way of legitimate expansion of power to enfranchise more people.  The guillotine was used to silence dissent.  It was used as a way to increase Robespierre's power and in this blatant grab for more power, I think that there is a great amount of evil evident.

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