58. The hero's tragedy

I had the misfortune a few days ago of hearing Donald Trump talking about health workers drawing a war hero metaphor. They go to work, with no protection, they probably should not, but they risk their lives for us. Trump concludes that It is beautiful to see them do this. In this conclusion, he is misunderstanding the concept of the hero. It is not beautiful that anyone has to put their life on the line, in war or in a pandemic. It is, rather, a tragedy. The sacrifice of the hero may be exalted, admired and praised. It often deserves it. But it is also reflective of a failure. The failure of a society that puts its soldiers, or its health workers, in a position in which they have to choose abandoning their dignity or making the ultimate sacrifice. This failure is ugly and unbecoming. I would expect a leader to describe as sad, to undertake to do everything possible to prevent it. We don’t want heroes. We want effective, well supplied, well funded and well organised emergency services  

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Comments

Melkisecebe said…
I could not agree more. And I am sure all this speech about “heroes” and “front lines” is not casual... it gives a look of extraordinary and catastrophic to something that yes, is extraordinary, but was predicted and expected by experts and for what those in decision making should have be more aware about. Anyhow, I also don’t want a society where heroes are needed, I prefer a collective anonymous effort for things ti work, for everyone. Heroes are so oudated!

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