After many months, and several lengthy debates, the Council of Elrond still hasn’t decided who is going to carry the One Ring to Mordor. If anything, we’re even less certain of who’s going to bear the ring than when we first started discussing this. As a mere Dwarf, perhaps I, Gimli, son of Glóin, am speaking out of turn, so forgive me for saying this, but am I the only one who doesn't really give a shit who destroys the ring at this point?
I know everyone’s pretty hung up about whose plan is going to best unite the realms of Hobbits, Elves, Dwarves, and Men against Sauron’s forces. But let’s face it, it’s not like anyone is that excited about any one plan. They each have their risks and drawbacks. Frodo’s plan is bold, but we might have a hard time convincing the Horse-lords of Rohan to support a Hobbit ring-bearer. As much as we all love Gandalf, I think there’s a general sense that his time has passed. And Boromir (emphasis on the bore) doesn’t exactly have the sexiest plan, and we all agree he’s a little creepy.
But am I crazy for suggesting that all of these options still seem, at their core, basically…fine? I mean we’re talking about defeating fucking Sauron here, so, to me, any plan that involves chucking the ring into the fires of Mount Doom sounds pretty damn good right now. Hell, I’d vote for Sméagol to bear the ring if he were in the running, even if his remarks about “nasty little hobbitses” are wildly out of touch, if not openly racist.
It’s all fine and dandy for you Elves to argue on and on about who should bear the ring from your ivory towers of Rivendell. And you Men of Gondor can afford to discuss this ad nauseum, because even under Sauron’s rule you’d be just fine, because, let’s face it, you’ve always been just fine.
But we Dwarves don’t exactly have that luxury. While you’re quibbling about whether Frodo has the chutzpah it takes to cross Ephel Dúath into Mordor undetected and destroy the ring, down in the Mines of Moria, we Dwarves are getting our shit wrecked. As we speak, my brethren are being rounded up by the Balrog and shipped off to the Dwarf detention centers deep in the dungeons of Minas Morgul. I know the Middle Earth media stopped covering our plight a long time ago, but make no mistake, those Dwarf rights abuses, the likes of which haven’t been seen since the reign of Morgoth, are still happening. So yeah, we’d all love to see a Hobbit defeat Sauron, but some of us also just want to stay the fuck alive.
Besides, Sauron is starting to look pretty beatable these days. After that whistleblower Orc revealed Sauron’s quid pro quo with Celebrimbor to forge the Rings of Power, even some of the Nazgûl are beginning to cast doubts about his leadership abilities. While his popularity amongst Orcs remains high, all it takes is a few Orc defectors in key regions like Emyn Muil and Osgiliath to turn the tides in favor of the Free People. So it seems like just about anyone in the Council could take the ring to Mordor and most likely succeed.
However, the one thing we can’t afford to do is keep fighting amongst ourselves, and risk alienating our allies. Sure, in the past, Boromir may have wanted to use the power of the ring against Sauron, which we now agree was a problematic policy decision on many levels. And, sure, Frodo’s plan would require getting past the Orc watchmen at the Tower of Cirith Ungol, which is definitely not going to be easy. But either way, is all this back and forth mudslinging really the best approach when it might dissuade the Ents of Fangorn, or the Elves of Lothlórien from aiding whoever we choose to be the ring-bearer? Keep in mind that infighting was one of the reasons the ring wasn’t destroyed during the War of the Last Alliance.
Remember, the longer we wait, the longer Sauron has to build up his armies. And with sorcerers like Saruman colluding with him, there’s no telling what morgul magic coming out of Isengard will be used to corrupt unsuspecting elves into goblins, as has happened in the past. So wouldn’t we be better off just deciding on a ring-bearer now and uniting the entire Council as quickly as possible rather than continuing to beat this into the ground?
Once the ring is destroyed we’ll have plenty of time to achieve our long-term priorities like how to more equitably distribute Lembas bread, or how to make sure everyone in Middle Earth has affordable access to Athelas healing herb. But, for the love of Eru, can we just pick a ring-bearer now so we make sure we defeat Sauron once and for all?
I’m glad we can at least all finally agree that Faramir isn’t going to take the ring to Mordor. Sure he might make a great Steward of Gondor some day, but destroying the “One Ring to Rule Them All”? No way. And quite honestly, he should’ve seen that a long time ago.