47 years old. Do you know how I stayed alive this long? All these years? Fear. The spectacle of fearsome acts. Somebody steals from me, I cut off his hands. He offends me, I cut out his tongue. He rises against me, I cut off his head, stick it on a pike. Raise it high up in the streets so all can see. That’s what preserves the order of things. Fear. That one tonight. Who was he? A nobody. A coward. What an ignominious end that would have been. I killed the last honorable man fifteen years ago. Since then… You’ve seen his portrait. Downstairs. … Is your mouth all juiced up with cunny juice? I asked you a question. … Oh, you got a murderous rage in you and I like it. It’s life boilin’ up inside you. It’s good. The Priest and me, we lived by the same principles. It was only faith that divided us. He give me this you know. It was the finest beating I ever took. My face was pulp. My guts was pierced. My ribs was all mashed up. But when he come to finish me, I couldn’t look him in the eye. He spared me, because he wanted me to live in shame. This was a great man. Great man. So I cut out the eye that looked away, and sent it to him, wrapped in blue paper. I would have cut them both out if I could have fought him blind. Then I rose back up with full heart and buried him in his own blood….He was the only man I ever killed worth remembering. I never had a son. Civilization is crumbling. God bless you.
Gangs of New York, Bill “The Butcher” Cutting