Of course your first reaction is most likely going to be "Jedi. They fight for order and peace in the galaxy." True, that's what the Jedi Order claims to do. However, the Sith aren't all Force Chokes and Order 66's. There is a lot more to them than meets the eye.
For those of you that have read Star Wars novels, you'll know that both the Jedi and the Sith have codes that they strive by. The Jedi Code is as follows:
There is no emotion... There is peace.
There is no ignorance... There is knowledge.
There is no passion... There is serenity.
There is no chaos... There is harmony.
There is no death... There is the Force.
Okay cool, now let's take a look at the Sith Code:
Peace is a lie, there is only passion.
Through passion, I gain strength.
Through strength, I gain power.
Through power, I gain victory.
Through victory, my chains are broken.
The Force shall free me.
The Jedi Code states mainly that emotion is forbidden, and their every waking moment should be used in obtaining knowledge about The Force. "There is no emotion, there is peace." So basically, no happiness, no anger, no love. You aren't really able to live your life. Instead, you have to do whatever the Council tells you to do until one day you die and the midi-chlorians choose someone else to be a Jedi.
The Sith Code immediately rebuts that belief with the very first line: "Peace is a lie, there is only passion." They claim that peace in inconceivable, and that passion is the only way to use The Force. They believe that through having a passion in something, you will become stronger and eventually succeed and be free. Now ask yourself, would you rather be an emotionless servant in pursuit of knowledge, or a passionate, successful person set on freedom?
But Palpatine Was Evil!
Sure, maybe The Emperor wasn't the nicest of folk, and while I'm a strong believer that good and evil is just a point of view, I'll consent that Palpatine was just one bad dude.
However, you can't judge an entire belief off of on guy. Take Darth Vader for example. He was the poster child of the Empire and he was feared by the entire galaxy. But think about it, why did Anakin Skywalker turn to the Dark Side in the first place?
He was trying to do everything in his power to make sure his wife didn't die. After suffering the loss of his beloved mother, Anakin started to have premonitions of Padme dying in childbirth, and when you're a Jedi, you take premonitions very seriously. He didn't want Padme to die, so after finding no answers from the Jedi, he turned to his long-time friend Chancellor Palpatine, who claimed to have answers. Although he did kill Mace Windu, he did it only to save the one man who claimed to have the power to save Padme.
But Anakin Killed All Of The Younglings!
True, killing a bunch of kids doesn't bode well for Anakin's reputation, but have you ever heard the phrase "A mother would do anything for her child"? Well Anakin was no mother, but he was about to become a father. At the time, Padme was pregnant with twins and Anakin was willing to do whatever it took to save his wife and unborn children, like he did when he threw The Emperor into the Death Star reactor in Return of the Jedi.
But Anakin Killed Padme Out Of Anger!
Actually, no he didn't. If you read about the events that transpired in Revenge of the Sith, Anakin's use of Force Choke on Padme did not kill her. When she was in the medical facility on Polis Massa, she said that she believed that there was still good in him, and then died. If it had been the Force Choke that killed her, she would have died instantly of asphyxiation. Instead, Padme lost the will to live, and died of a broken heart. Sure it might sound a little cheesy, but it's true. Look it up.
So There Are Good Sith, But There Are No Bad Jedi!
On the contrary. Watch Attack of the Clones and you will find out that Count Dooku started out as a Jedi Master, and in fact taught Qui-Gon Jin. Count Dooku then joined the Dark Side because he felt that was a worthier cause, much as Saruman did when joining Sauron (the real mind-bender is when you realize Count Dooku and Saruman are played by the same guy).
Qui-Gon Jin wasn't all that innocent either. He was what was known as a Gray Jedi, or a Jedi that wasn't quite as noble as Jedi are supposed to be. He frequently argued with the Jedi Council and refused direct orders. He also carried on a forbidden love affair with a fellow Jedi named Tahl. During a mission however, Tahl was killed, and Qui-Gon went mad with rage. He went dangerously close to joining the Dark Side as he hunted down Tahl's killer.
So how innocent are the Jedi now?
My Hopes For Star Wars Episode 7
Hopefully, with a fresh new director and a fresh new perspective, the Sith can get a few more sympathy votes. Unless Palpatine is the big baddie again, but even then I hope that the Inquisitors will show the true nature of the Sith as Darth Vader once did.
I may add on to this article in the future, but for now I feel I have more than made my point. If you disagree with anything, let me know in the comments. I love discussions and I will happily address any rational questions, concerns, or comments.
As we wait for [Star Wars: Episode VII — The Force Awakens](movie:711158) I can only say: May the Force be with you.