I was thinking about often I hear the word "hero" these days. In my estimation it is an overused word. It regularly gets applied to entire groups of people - literaly millions of people some times, just because of their jobs. We hear about our "heroes" in the military. Our police, firefighters and even teachers are touted as "heroes" too. Certainly some in these groups are heroes but everyone of them? Now, I realize this might be a sensitive issue, but may I ask, "Do we really think that all of the aforementioned folks qualify as 'heroic'?" Consider these definitions from Merriam Webster...
Hero - 1 a: a mythological or legendary figure often of divine descent endowed with great strength or ability b: an illustrious warrior c: a man admired for his achievements and noble qualities d: one that shows great courage.
Heroic - 1: of, relating to, resembling, or suggesting heroes especially of antiquity2 a: exhibiting or marked by courage and daring b: supremely noble or self-sacrificing 3 a: of impressive size, power, extent, or effect b (1): of great intensity : 2): of a kind that is likely only to be undertaken to save a life.
If every soldier is a hero than what do we call the soldier who rushes into enemy fire and is wounded trying to aid a fallen soldier, yet still drags his brother to safety? Is he a "hero" along with the guy who works on jeeps back at the base? What do call the firefighter who almost loses his own life rescuing someone? Is he a hero along with the guy who cooks back at the firehouse? (Somehow "superhero" doesn't seem to work.) There are more examples but I think you get my point. Maybe it's because we lack many genuine heroes that we "dumb down" who can be one. Or perhaps it is a desire for more credit than we deserve that this happens. But, I'm convinced, that if everyone is a "hero" then no one really is.