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The lack of heroes in modern society has become a result of the high expectations set by Americans. "The American hero is a very different role model from his ancient Greek and Norse counterparts" (Burke). Americans want heroes

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Introduction

Where Are Our Heroes? How would our world differ if we still had heroes such as Hercules, Zeus, and Beowulf as role models to guide us in the right direction? Chances deem that society's safety and evil-free environment with no three-headed monsters or evil creatures to interfere with our lives would finally exist. However, the world we live in today does not contain the fictitious heroes of that stature anymore. If one were to look "hero" up in the dictionary, it would read as "a person that contains such characteristics as courage, strength, wisdom, honesty, and morality." A hero possesses any of these traits yet, more commonly, it also describes objects of little importance. Through the word's overuse, hero has lost its meaning and has also lost its value to people in today's society. While the complexity of a hero makes it difficult to find a real hero for use as guidance, youths today can find guidance by focusing on the positive characteristics of common role models. Heroes in our modern culture continue to decrease as a hero's meaning becomes more undefined. In a poll performed this year, out of 1,022 Americans, more than half could not name a public figure that they considered a hero (Clark). These people turned down athletes, politicians, and celebrities, most of whom are originally associated with heroic qualities. ...read more.

Middle

Currently there is a dilemma concerning a lack of heroes and its effect on modern youths. The people in general are guilty for causing the lack of heroes in our society. The public is guilty by itself for dwelling on mistakes, negative characteristics, or accidents of potential heroes by publicizing these things. People enjoy finding the flaws of the great as a way to believe that they do in fact fail to uphold the standards of perfection. However, they are much greater than the average person in reality. Reaching and attaining the expectations of a hero will never happen and, somehow, the term of a hero has also lost its merit. Along with "hero" losing its value of nobility and greatness, people that could once consider themselves heroes have lost their recognition as a hero as well. Today's heroes no longer fulfill the heroic traits of honesty, courage, or faithfulness; rather, Americans classify people as so-called heroes once admired for characteristics in "arenas" such as athletic ability, wealth, beauty, or celebrity status. Therefore, finding those heroes from whom we can grow a right perspective of the world around us became extremely difficult in today's world of widespread self-centeredness. Furthermore, the people in the public eye termed a hero just as quickly demolish in their ranking. ...read more.

Conclusion

The deficiency of heroes remains crucial to all people, especially to youths. Youths look at heroes for inspiration, help, and dependence. Heroes provide a function in society by curing the diseases, exploring outer space, stopping criminals, and making all wrongs right. Heroes fill our hearts with hope in despair and they lift our souls in time of need. "The lesson for children is clear. Children need real heroes, people who have say, who possess principles and, most of all, who display values that will serve for a lifetime" (Cohen). The absence of a hero causes turbulence in the lives of people. In effect, society has coerced to turn to the next best thing, role models. The heroes of ancient times known to all, Hercules, Zeus and Oedipus, have found their place in ancient history. These fictitious heroes left impossible roles to fill for the heroes of today. Many factors contribute to the difficulty of stepping up to hero status. The ambiguous meaning and complexity of a hero, and the role of the media each play a substantial part to the recent disappearance of heroes in society. Yet, despite these major factors, we must find a way to fill the gap by focusing on positive characteristics of common role models because hero-figures are needed in the lives of youths for guidance through life and act as a safeguard. ...read more.

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