The Price of Greatness Is Responsibility Essay

In his first few days in office, President Barack Obama issued executive orders and presidential memoranda directing the U. S. military to develop plans to withdraw troops from Iraq, while he could have let the US military continue devastating that part of the world on the basis of false allegations made by the previous senator. Our public figures are not only well known, but admired and loved. However, with their fame and greatness come great expectations from us, the public. Under their seemingly exotic outer shell and fame, they are simply ordinary people like the common man on the street.

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Even in literature, public figures are faces with expectations of being perfect. For example, in To Kill a Mockingbird by Harper Lee, Atticus Finch is a well-known local lawyer. He has an overall good reputation, and he is a very learned man; however, one day, he chooses to defend a black man in a case against a white man. The black man is convicted of raping the white man’s daughter, and even though all charges are faced towards the white man lying, the black man is proven guilty.

Atticus Finch receives a lot of hatred for his decision to face someone who is unlike him, and his children also hear a lot from the citizens of their town. The citizens of his town always thought of him as someone who they could look up to, but when he defies their initial trust with something that they could not even imagine, they start degrading him. In this way, the public expects a lot from their public figures, because they inspire it to lead others in the same way.

Winston Churchill once said “If the people of the United States had continued in a mediocre station, struggling with the wilderness, absorbed in their own affairs, and a factor of no consequence in the movement of the world, they might have remained forgotten and undisturbed beyond their protecting oceans: but one cannot rise to be in many ways the leading community in the civilized world without being involved in its problems, without being convulsed by its agonies and inspired by its causes. ” It is also evident that public figures are faced with many expectations in everyday life.

For instance, the current American president, Barack Obama. It is already extremely difficult to actually be president, but Obama is, arguably, president during one of the hardest times in history. He has been ruling us through a difficult recession, capture of a very dangerous terrorist, and just hard times in general. However, even though he is most likely trying his hardest in order to be a successful president, he has to always be careful because even a minor slip-up can cause citizens to stop believing in him as a success.

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