“But that would just nibble at the edges. The whole cultures shot through. The skeleton needs melting and reshaping. Good God, it isn’t as simple as just picking up a book you laid down half a century ago. Remember, the firemen are rarely necessary. The public itself stopped reading of their own accord. You firemen provide a circus now and then at which buildings are set off and crowds gather for the pretty blaze, but it’s a small sideshow indeed, and hardly necessary to keep things in line. So few want to be rebels any more. And out of those few, most, like myself, scare easily. Can you dance faster that the White Clown, shout louder than ‘Mr. Gimmick’ and the parlor ‘families’? If you can, you will win your way, Montag. In any event, you’re a fool. People are having fun.”
“Committing suicide! Murdering!”…..
…..”There has to be someone ready when it blows up.”
“What? Men quoting Milton? Saying, I remember Sophocles? Reminding the survivors that man has his good side, too? They will only gather up their stones to hurl at each other. Montag, go home. Go to bed. Why waste your final hours racing about your cage denying you’re a squirrel?”
“Then you don’t care any more?”
“I care so much I’m sick.”