The Random Comic Strip

The Random Comic Strip

Words to live by...

"How beautiful it is to do nothing, and to rest afterward."

[Spanish Proverb]

Ius luxuriae publice datum est

(The right to looseness has been officially given)

"Everyone carries a part of society on his shoulders," wrote Ludwig von Mises, "no one is relieved of his share of responsibility by others. And no one can find a safe way for himself if society is sweeping towards destruction. Therefore everyone, in his own interest, must thrust himself vigorously into the intellectual battle."

Apparently, the crossword puzzle that disappeared from the blog, came back.

Tuesday, May 7, 2013

It's Seems Such a Simple Concept But...

Can we talk about courage? The definition seems to have changed over the years. When I was young, it meant facing immediate danger to life or limb but pushing through anyway. The important thing was realizing the danger existed. Bravery under fire, we called it. The stuff of heroes.

Today, the word has lost its power for me. I write this because I just read where "Gabby" Giffords was awarded a "Profile in Courage" award.

The article says:
The award, handed out annually by the John F. Kennedy Presidential Library and Museum, is given to someone who demonstrated courage “without regard for the personal or professional consequences.”

Isn't Ms Giffords a Democrat? And a liberal?

So what did she risk in terms of personal or professional consequences? Perhaps it is for her courage in facing a long uphill rehabilitation regime? But that isn't what the article says it's for. It says it's for recommitting herself "to fighting for a more peaceful society free from hate and violence." 

Had she stopped doing that for some reason? 

Now, if she had started campaigning for lower taxes and more spending cuts... that would have been courageous on her part.

We talk about the courage of small children facing cancer. They aren't courageous, they have no choice but to face it and do what the doctors and his or her parents say to do. It's not like a sick child can run away.

Courage is, to me, more than just being put in a tough situation. It's seeking out that tough situation or it's going beyond just facing it. It's running into that burning building to save a child, an adult, or even just a pet. It's going toward the sound of gunfire.

It's not simply surviving.

Sorry, just my opinion.


Tom Sightings said...

Well, a lot of people who are faced with a crisis like that just give up. So I give her lots of credit for battling back to health and offering us all a good example of how to deal with an unexpected personal catastrophe that was certainly no fault of her own. But as far as the Profile in Courage Award, I'd nominate you for your courageous arguments, opinions and insights on Boomer Musings!

Douglas said...

Tom, I appreciate the sentiment but the reality is I do nothing courageous here and what I do is done mostly anonymously. As for Gabby, she had a choice after the shooting; curl up and be a vegetable or try to get as much of her life back as possible. No real risk there and the only choice is between doing nothing and going through rehab. No, the courageous folks were the bystanders who brought Loughner down when he bobbled the magazine. They took a risk and were unsure of the outcome. That's courage.