Real Heroes in our Society Essay

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Real Heroes in our Society

The Lone Ranger, Zorro, Batman, Superman are some of the characters that we stereotypically constitute as heroes. They are known to fight with courage without fear of death. They destroy the enemy within a blink of an eye. They fight using their own body strength, superpower, or some kind of weapon. They come to the rescue miraculously and leave without a trace. They are mysterious. We are unable to identify who they are underneath the masks and disguises. Yet, we praise them and ignore the real heroes that surround us regularly, ordinarily. “All of us …like to believe that in a moral emergency we will behave like the heroes of our youth, bravely and forthrightly, without thought of personal loss or
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“[The] old image of … a hero, as a man of conscience and courage, all that was just a threadbare pipe dream” (O’Brien 57). Rather, a hero is an “everyman”, whose attitude towards war arises from anger, fear, shame, morals, and confusion like any ordinary person.

These ordinary young men “did not want to die” (O’Brien 44), but they know “it is impossible to do a good job at war and expect to stay alive” (Currey 39). It is impossible because unlike ordinary games, “there was [not] a winner [nor] a loser. There were [no] rules” (O’Brien 32) because there are “no safe ground: enemies everywhere” (O’Brien 63). They are so scared that “if a mission seemed especially hazardous, or if it involved a place they knew to be bad, they carried everything they could” (O’Brien 9). Literally, they would take everything regardless of the usefulness because it is better to be prepared than sorry. They know that after the game of war things would “never be normal again” (Ninh 42). Kien, in The Sorrow of War, has a horrific experience that “every time after …when he recalled the first night home of his new postwar life, his heart was wrenched in anguish and bitterness and he would involuntarily moan” (84). It is an involuntary emotion that arises whenever he thinks of the day that he escaped Hell. Like Kien, Jimmy Cross of The Things They Carried feels the same torture. “The bad stuff never stops happening: it lives in its own dimension, replaying itself over and over”

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