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Tyranny Ancient and Modern)

The term “Tyrant” has been used throughout history and goes all the way back to the Ancient Greeks around the Peloponnesian War era. As history has progressed, the definition of a tyrant has changed quite a bit from its original meaning. A tyrant used to be known as someone who rose to become a ruler through absolute power. They did not inherit or get voted into the role; they took it with force and power. It did not necessarily have a negative connotation to its name back then. Some tyrants were well-liked and not bad people. The way they came to power may not have been ideal or how the system worked, but they still could have a positive impact on society. Nowadays, we usually view a tyrant as a ruler who is corrupt and is driven by greed and self-preservation. This is very relatable today within the United States as some people see our Commander in Chief as a Tyrant ruler amongst the people.

In an article posted by the Washington Examiner, a man named Carl Bernstein claims that the Republican Senators who sided with Trump “joined hands with a tyrant.” This article is talking about the impeachment trial of President Trump and how the decisions of the Senators have a significant impact on the country as a whole. Bernstein‘s definition of the word tyrant, in this case, is being referred to as a cruel/ oppressive leader of the country we live in. Throughout his Presidency, there have been a lot of things that have happened that which people call in to question the morals and reason behind President Trump’s actions.

This article is referring to Trump as a tyrant due to his actions that he has done in the past while in office. I believe that the article means well in trying to make his point by stating that the senators are making a wrong decision. However, when he uses the term “siding with a tyrant,” he is stretching the phrase a little bit. If you were to examine the ancient definition of a tyrant, it has nothing to do with being corrupt or being a wrong person. So if you were to be comparing his use of the word tyrant in comparison to the ancient definition, he would be using it incorrectly. President Trump was elected by the majority of the people, and he went through the election process that our country has. Therefore you cannot necessarily call him a tyrant using the old definition of the word. On the other side, however, if he was using the name with the meaning of a corrupt ruler, then you could make an argument that he is accurate. I think he uses it out of proportion and is not used one hundred percent correctly.

The progression of the word tyrant has come about through years of oppressive rulers that left a bad name for the tyrant ruler. I think we need to take a look back and see how the word used to be used in order to use it in this day and age-appropriately. There are a lot of people who use the word but do not understand its true meaning. 

Word Count: 534

Michael Salisbury


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