Picture a courtroom, and a woman on trial for an almost unthinkable crime…
"Gaia, you stand accused of murdering 6.5 billion of your children. How do you plead?"
"Not guilty your honour. My actions were purely self defence, and I can prove it."
"Would you take the stand, and explain yourself?"
"With pleasure, your honour.
"At first my children loved me, as I loved them. I looked after them, nurtured them and cared for them as they grew. Most of them are still peaceful, gentle beings, living in harmony with one another. But some turned against us as they grew.
"They would kill their brothers and sisters; not for food, as is only to be expected sometimes, but simply for pleasure, or else to steal body parts. That alone sickened me. But there was little I could do, that was for the children to sort out between themselves.
"Then they forgot. They cut me open and started to drain me of energy. Not only that, but they began to poison me as well! They had forgotten I loved them, gave them life and cared for them all those years. I gave them plenty of warning, plenty! Very few listened, and those who did were shouted down by the rest. Then they began to talk, and made promises to 'cut down' or 'reduce' their actions.
"Nothing but lies and empty words! They continued to grow, poisoning me and their kin, and themselves, though they seemed not to realise that. They grew more and more, choking that which was once beautiful and full of life, replacing it with what? Solid, cold, dead grey, far as the eye could see. More words, meaningless vows, they hurt me so much.
"Yes, I killed them, but only because they left me no other choice."
"Thank you Gaia. You may step down."
"May I ask a question before I do, your honour?"
"I suppose so, yes."
"If your children had treated you that way, how would you react?"
"I'd kill them all."