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Wednesday, December 5, 2012

The Price Of Being Ahead Of The Curve

Which historical figure do you admire for being ahead of the curve on an issue from their time?

There are many things to admire about "Lincoln", the new Steven Speilberg film, not least of which is Lincoln himself. But several days after seeing the movie, the moral courage of Congressman Thaddeus Stevens of Pennsylvania, played by Tommy Lee Jones, has me researching to learn more about this remarkable man. Before seeing the film, I only knew Stevens was an abolitionist; I did not know he spoke about equality of the races 30 years prior to the passage of the 13th amendment. His foresight and bravery inspires and chastens me.

Though Stevens' brand of courage is not unique, somehow I'm awed anew every time I learn of people like him. What is your usual reaction when you're first exposed to people like Stevens? Have you ever known anyone personally with his kind of bravery? What price did that person pay for being ahead of the curve,  even if they were later vindicated by history?      


1 comment:

  1. I see Al Gore as someone ahead of his time. He was one of the first politicians to raise the issue to the American public and held hearings related to the environment as early as 1979. His book, An Inconvenient Truth, simplified the issue for the average non-scientist and raised awareness to a new level. He continues his work today. He has been widely ridiculed for his positions, and also lauded - by winning the Nobel Peace prize for his efforts to disseminate information about climate change and to lay the foundation for action against climate change.