Essay on Its a Wonderful Life

Submitted By jabt123
Words: 798
Pages: 4

Joe Abt Final Paper
It’s a Wonderful Life Ranging from the superhero to the everyday firefighter or police officer, there are many different examples of the “American Hero.” Although everybody may have a different definition of what an American hero actually is, there is one thing that they can all agree upon. An American hero is one who puts others before himself. George Bailey is the epitome of the “American hero.” He demonstrates this by putting off college to help out at the Building and Loan after his father dies, saving countless lives, and impacting the life of whoever he meets. George Bailey shows that he is an American Hero because he puts his whole life’s goals on hold to go back to the Bailey Bro’s Building and Loan after his father suddenly dies. It has been said that “[a] hero is someone who does not consciously think of himself during an emergency situation or who has a well-preserved sense of commitment and purpose all other times. Historically, heroes have been those who did not stray from their sense of commitment” (Olivo). In these words, everything about George Bailey is perfectly described. George thought that he had his life planned out perfectly. He was going to explore the world, then go to college, and then build all types of things. Suddenly, his father, Peter, died and George had to put a halt to his plans, and was forced to come back and take over his father’s job. Yes, George did voice his complaints about having to come back and not getting to fulfill his dreams, but he did it because he knew that there were people around him counting on him. He willing gave up his dream and put others before himself. Additionally, George Bailey is an “American Hero” because he saved countless lives. He did this both directly and indirectly throughout the movie. One way that he saved a life is was by telling the druggist, Mr. Gower, that Mr. Gower had inadvertently put poison in the pills that George was supposed to deliver to a family with a sick child. George, realizing the mistake, didn’t take the pills to the little boy. By doing this, George saved two lives. He saved Mr. Gower from going to jail and the little boy from dying. George also saved people’s lives when he refused to sell the Building and Loan to Mr. Potter. Instead, he kept it and gave out loans to people who the bank turned down so that those people could build affordable houses to live in. Even though this doesn’t seem like he is saving a life what he did changed people’s lives. An example is the bar tender Nick Martini. George helped the Martini family build a good life by giving them a loan. In the movie, when George wasn’t there to help him, Nick Martini became a bitter man and not as successful. George’s actions helped make Nick Martinis family and his life better. Finally, George Bailey is a hero because he impacted everybody that he met. George Bailey’s actions and decisions make a