Why We Didn’t Have Heroes in the 19th Century

Paul - Wallingford, Connecticut
Entered on June 7, 2008
Age Group: Under 18

People used the word hero way too easily. When I hear the word hero, I don’t recognize anyone from the 19th century. I see people like my parents, friends and family as role models. Even important people like the President or past Presidents, role models or people just doing the right thing is what I see. Police men and firefighters are great people doing a hard and brave job, but they are getting money to do their job, and it is a job so they have to do what they do. People fighting in wars to protect our country are good people too but they get money when they get out of the army. Most of the people in the 19th century that went to the war went because they either were forced to or they knew they were going to eventually have to go so they just went to get out quicker.

Abraham Lincoln to start off with, President from 1861-1865.He may have helped slaves and the north and I think that is a great thing. He also sent his troops out to burn down towns in the south and take everything they have. He helped create a big war that could have been avoided like most other countries with slave problems. John Brown another American “hero” to some people. To me not so much, he may have attempted to rescue some people but the way he did it was wrong. He stole weapons and gave them to slaves. In the mean time he killed seven men and injured over ten others. He wasn’t even successful in what he did. In thirty-six hours his men either died or ran away. He was later hanged.

Other people thought random people were heroes because they did something important but people are doing good things everyday and making right choices everyday so why not call everyone a hero. But if you go around calling everyone a hero then why even have the term hero. To me a hero is someone unlike others that does something totally different. In the past couple hundred years I wouldn’t consider anyone a hero not because I’m a mean person but because I think people use the word hero too easily. The word hero is a big thing that should be thought over before used; people shouldn’t use the word as freely.

I believe that there were no heroes in the 19th century. What someone might consider a hero others may consider a role model or someone that is just doing the right thing. People like Presidents may have done some good, but what about the bad things they did to other people. Most people consider a person being a hero as someone always doing the right thing but it is close to impossible for someone to do everything correct.