On the one hand, Rick wants to cooperate in any way he can with Herschel, including not only protecting the walkers in the barn - whom Herschel considers not dead but sick (and therefore potentially curable) people - but bringing new walkers into the barn when they turn up. Rick is not happy about this at all. But he thinks he has no other choice. Lori and Carl want to stay on the farm. Lori is pregnant. Taking his family back out into the insane world out there is not acceptable to Rick.
On the other hand, Shane might want to stay, but certainly not with walkers in the barn. The very possibility of that is not only unacceptable, but insane to Shane's way of thinking. Shane's conversation with Lori only intensifies Shane's convictions that the walkers must be destroyed. Shane thinks he's the father of Lori's baby - which she does not really deny as a physical possibility - and he already has something of a fatherly relationship with Carl. Shane risked his own life and sacrificed Otis to save Karl.
So who's right? Although I had sympathy for Rick's approach, I have to side with Shane. The very process of taking the two new walkers back from the water to the barn shows how dangerous they are - all that has happen is Rick or Herschel get too close to one of them, get bitten, and game over.
And although I felt bad for the walkers, and Herschel, when Shane opened the barn and started shooting the zombies in the head as they staggered out the door, he made the right decision. Even Maggie nodded that it was ok for Glenn to join in the shooting.
And the heart-breaking denouement shows Rick pretty much agrees. Everyone is stunned when Sophia dead-walks out of the barn (I hadn't figured she was in the barn, but thought she'd be found a walker in the drugstore), but Rick has the sense and the self-control to shoot her in the head, before she bites any of his family and people he feels responsible for. He chose not to try to put Sophia in a harness and back in the barn.
It was a horrifying but instructive scene. If Shane had been convinced by Rick, and tried peaceful coexistence with the walkers in the barn, what would have happened when Carol discovered her daughter? Would she have been able to live with her daughter in the barn? How about the others?
I suppose Rick's original point of view - Herschel's - could be vindicated if it turns out there is some way out there, now or in the future, to bring the walkers back to full human life. But unless and until that happens, I think you have to give credit to Shane for doing the right thing. And even if a cure is discovered, Shane made the best decision with the information he had at the time.
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The Plot to Save Socrates
"a Da Vinci-esque thriller" - New York Daily News
"Sierra Waters is sexy as hell" - curled up with a good book