You Keep Using The Word "Hero" I Don't Think It Means What You Think It Means.

Alternate title: The Word “Hero” Has Officially Jumped The Shark.
But I dislike the shark phrase and you can’t go wrong with Princess Bride quotes.

Anyway, on with the thread. Ever since 9-11 it seems like “hero” has been way overused. Yeah, the firefighters, police and others who ran into those towers to try to save people were indeed heroes but for some reason after that the hero label got slapped on anyone for anything.

The proof that it no longer means anything can be demonstrated by the daughter of the guy who flew his plane into an IRS building, killing someone else, calling her father a “hero” for taking a stand for what he believes.

This should probably be in the pit, but I just can’t work up enough vitriol typing on an iPhone.

You are a hero for starting this thread. Can I buy you a hero sandwich?

The word was grossly misused LONG before 9/11.

People are always complaining about the overuse of hero - genius, too. And they’re probably right, but there’s not much anybody can do about it. It’s part of our culture of compulsive self-congratulation. Just dying does not make you a hero. Dying while doing something noble or brave, particularly for someone else, might.

I’ll disagree with you here. She’s using the word in a pretty normal sense - it’s common to call a guy a hero if he stands up for his beliefs and dies for them. Her usage isn’t wrong. She’s wrong because her father was a crazy, suicidal asshole who killed an IRS manager for particular fucking reason other than being upset at his tax bill.

Granted, I’m sure it was. To me it just seems worse since 9-11. Maybe it’s because we saw actual heroes in action, so it became more glaring when the word was used for any little thing.

The kids who start a lemonade stand to raise money for Haiti aren’t heroes, they’re just good thoughtful kids. The people who survived for days under rubble aren’t heroes, they were just surviving. The guy who flew his plane into a building killing another person because he was pissed at the government was not a hero, he was a disturbed individual that didn’t give a shit about anyone else. He was no better than those other guys who flew planes into buildings. Most definitely, not a hero.

Not to mention that he burned down their house the night before. Maybe if she’d had to flee the burning home, she wouldn’t think he’s a hero.

But by that definition the 9-11 terrorists, the Oklahoma City bombers, the Unibomber and every person who strapped a bomb to themselves and went to a crowded place and set it off are heroes. No, killing innocent people for your beliefs and dying in the process just makes you a crazed murderer, not a hero.

Right. It’s bewildering to me that she thinks her father is a hero after he burned down their home. That served no logical purpose. Even if you think it’s heroic to crash your plane into an IRS office (it isn’t), that’s flat out malicious. What could be heroic about destroying your family’s home so they have noplace to live after you’re dead?

I know, I know. Say this to certain people and their heads may explode.

And I agree with you. I’m not saying she’s right. I’m saying that her usage of the word isn’t that unusual. Not compared to, say, the examples you gave in your previous post, where people get called heroes just for doing something nice.

“Those other guys” actually are “heroes” in some people’s minds.

And, if you have been told by your leaders that “The West” is a threat to your very existence and the good, ole USA is leading the charge to destroy it, and you get no information to help you make informed decisions to convince you otherwise, why wouldn’t they be?

Oh Lord, yes, Wile E, I absolutely agree, and the incorrect and overuse drives me nuts.

A local story a few days ago about a three-year-old girl who got lost in the woods overnight with her dog, was touching. She was found the next morning, and evidently the dog curled up against her and kept her warm enough to survive the low-30-degree weather.

The local TV reporter called the dog a hero.

The word has lost all meaning.

We don’t need another hero.

Homer: That Timmy O’Toole’s a real hero.
Lisa: How do you mean, Dad?
Homer: Well, he fell in a well and…he can’t get out.
Lisa: How does that make him a hero?
Homer: Well, that’s more than you’ve ever done.

I agree with all of this.

Cptn. Chesley Sullenburger is my hero. A little bit for doing his job landing the plane, but quite a bit for his modesty afterward.

What good timing. I was just rolling my eyes the other day when reading this story on CNN about the underwear bomber flight:

“Culture of compulsive self-congratulation” indeed.

Some time after Bush’s War started, I saw a young soldier serving there. She said something to the effect of, ‘Those guys are heroes… Well, we’re all heroes.’ (She did say ‘Well, we’re all heroes.’ Just not sure about the first part.)

To be fair, other people disagree with him. But yes, going through something horrible also doesn’t make you a hero by itself. The people who helped subdue the guy? They were acting out of self preservation but calling them heroes is not unreasonable. If you were all the way across the plane and didn’t even know what was going on until the bomber was already beaten and subdued, you didn’t do anything heroic. You lived, and good for you, but you didn’t really do anything.

He wasn’t being a hero. He was just being a dog.

I’d personally prefer a gyro.

Yes indeed. The correct term here is “an hero”.