The Burrow: Slytherin: Does EVERYONE Turn Out Bad?

by Michelle

“There’s not a single witch or wizard who went bad who wasn’t in Slytherin.”
– Hagrid in Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone

Read it again. Now stop and think, all during the series we have mostly been led to believe that ALL Slytherins are bad. But is that necessarily true? Are we really right in thinking that?

Yes, in all the books the Slytherins boo Gryffindor, their biggest enemy, during quidditch. But is it really ALL of them? How do we know that maybe some of them wish they weren’t there. What if some of them were put into Slytherin the way Harry was almost put there or the way Hermione was almost put into Ravenclaw?

We know about the Slytherins Malfoy, Crabbe, Goyle, Pansy, Lucius, Snape, and our favorite Tom Marvolo Riddle, otherwise known as Voldermort. Malfoy seems to be on his way to be just as bad as his father Lucius- who has done nothing but support Voldermort and try to get rid of Dumbledore and Harry, Crabbe and Goyle are right behind. And we all know what Tom, Voldermort, has done to not only the wizard community but the muggle community as well.

But let’s talk about Pansy Parkinson for a second. Now we hear a lot about her rudeness towards Harry, Ron, and especially Hermione. But is she all that bad? Let’s consider this, look at how openly Slytherins like Malfoy, Crabbe, and Goyle openly talk about their fathers and Voldermort as if they were sort of heroes. But look at Slytherins like Pansy, although she is not a “good” person she hasn’t shown any sign of being anywhere near as bad as Malfoy. In fact, she reminds me of Malfoy’s mother, Narcissa.

Notice how Sirius says in The Order Of The Phoenix, after pointing to Bellatrix and Narcissa’s names, “Andromeda’s sisters are still here because they made lovely, respectable, pure-blood marriages, …” He is not necessarily saying Narcissa is a dark person, although we later see Bellatrix is. Instead we are told she was kept in the family because she married Lucius.

My last example is our beloved Snape, one of my least favorite Slytherins. True, he WAS a Death Eater, but look now; Dumbledore trusts him. He is helping the Order spy on Voldermort and when he thought Harry still thought Sirius was dead he took it upon himself to go look for Harry. If you remember what Harry saw of Snape’s life in the Pensieve, maybe all of his bad experiences made him want to learn dark arts for revenge, like Voldermort seeking revenge for his father.

So do we truly have it right in saying ALL Slytherins are bad? “There’s not a single witch or wizard who went bad who wasn’t in Slytherin.” Hagrid isn’t saying they ALL turn into bad witches or wizards. He is saying all the bad ones HAVE been in Slytherin. Maybe someday Malfoy will turn a new leaf. Maybe someday Pansy will be best friends with Hermione. Maybe not ALL Slytherins are bad once you get to know them.