Washington was braver than 99.99% of humans will ever be. He left a cushy life to suicidally challenge the most powerful empire in the world.
Is he braver than a 12 year old kid who has been the man of the house for years because one parent works all the time and for one reason or another the other one isn't around, so they've gotta be mommy and daddy to their younger brothers and sisters because nobody else is looking out for them?
I dont mean to sidetrack the whole thread but something about that comment really irked me. He's more brave because he had to ability to choose to do something heroic? There's lots of people who don't have that choice and still gotta do unthinkable things daily, are those people also in the 'really brave 0.001%'? Cuz there are a lot of them.
It's a fair point to raise
Ok then. I've had as hard a life as anyone in this country I'd bet. Not going into details but I have faced extraordinary amounts of adversity.
But you know what? In the 1700s that theoretical kid IndeedProceed mentioned would have already lost half his brothers and sisters to disease at a young age and would likely have starved to death. It was a completely different universe then. Food, medicine, and guns didn't magically appear in stores, fabricated by machines from far-away places. There was no EBT card coming in the mailbox when times got tough. Volunteering for the military then wasn't a job - it was more likely suicide.
You're missing my point. I'm not even talking about just Americans. I'm saying people do wildly heroic stuff every day just to survive. Washington was born rich and died rich and in between led an interesting and complicated life where he accomplished some amazing things.
But you're the one who said he was braver than 99.99% of humans, and honestly, I call bullcrap. I think we're a species full of grit and determination to better ourselves and everyday in America, in any country in the world there are people who wake up without the liberty of the advantages and choices that Washington had that have to do things honestly I'd see as unthinkable just to survive.
You just don't need the point. Let George Washington be great without telling everyone he's braver than 99.99% of humans.
The pampered modern crowd has no idea when they bash on historical figures that life was terrible back then for everyone, rich or poor.
I don't know who the pampered modern crowd is, but I've been to Sturbridge Village. I know what's up.
Washington was bled go death by his own doctors. We owe a debt to those in the past who struggled against that sort of incredible hardship. THAT is what I mean by "brave." I don't think the modern crowd could hack that type of life. People can't even cope with a couple days without electricity, or an hour without their phone. Judging humans from the 1700s by modern sensibilities is ignorant and self-serving.
So if it was bad for everyone, doesn't that mean that all of the hardships of times Washington faced were unilaterally the same among all people living at the time?
And if it was bad for Washington, an extremely rich person, who owned slaves, wouldn't it have been worse for other people without those advantages? Just randomly picking a group out of a hat here but how about we say....slaves?
And those slaves, who it was worse for, they got up every day knowing they were considered property to man who could do with them as they pleased. And they still put ten toes down the ground each morning (assuming they had actual raised beds to keep away from vermin instead of the more prevalent hay pallets, and assuming that their master or their work or the general brutality of the time hadn't robbed them of one or more of those ten toes), and they went out and tried to survive each day.
Is that not also bravery?
What about the ones who tried to escape, even though they knew that the dogs kept on property were trained to hunt them down and mutilate them to warn other slaves from trying to escape? Is that not also bravery?
George Washington's great. I'm pretty liberal, and I don't want his statues torn down. We owe a lot to him.
But he wasn't braver than 99.99% of humans. That's just farcical proxy beatification. And its unnecessary. And on top of all that, I doubt he'd agree with it.