I had imagined one of the townspeople pointing out that the wizards' intervention deprived the townspeople of a choice in their own fates, even if the only choice open to them was a choice of deaths, and so, while noble in intention, it is not wholly righteous.
The speaker is Jewish, a melamed. Is this point of view one that is consistent with Jewish thought? Is there a passage in the writings of one of the Jewish sages or scholars, or in the scriptures, that he could refer to? Or is this simply something that a Jewish scholar would not say--especially if he had been saved from a terrible death?
I'm not even sure what search terms would work here. Googling "Jewish perspectives on choice" got me a page of articles about abortion. "Jewish perspectives on free will" was a little more helpful, but not much.