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A Hero Is Simply Defined as a Person

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A hero is simply defined as a person, typically a man, who is admired or idealized for courage, outstanding achievements, or noble qualities. Heroism often comes into play when the smallest act of kindness can be of greater value to the recipient. For example, Ernesto Quinonez shows the difference between one teacher's courage to push the children to a better life and another teacher putting the students down in the story "Bodega Dreams." Likewise, is the story "Ranch Girl" Maile Meloy discusses the rough life of a girl who grows up on a ranch. Finally, in the poem "Hard Rock Returns to Prison," Etheridge Knight explains the story of a man "Hard Rock," who was tough and didn't take crap from people. Heroes exhibit qualities of integrity while thinking of others more than themselves, as demonstrated in the selection from Bodega Dreams, "Ranch Girl," and "Hard Rock Returns."

"Bodega Dreams" deals with teenage children in high school. Basically speaking, there was a teacher named Mr. Blessington. Blessington always bad mouthed the children and told them they would never amount to anything. Specifically, that the males would wind up in jail and the females would wind up hooking on the streets (Quinonez 178). Blessington made statements that material things make you valuable. Also, Blessington refused to allow any poems in class that weren't written by major American poets because it was an English class, not Spanish.

On the other hand, there was a Science teacher names Tapia. Tapia was a great inspiration to the students and he encouraged the students to do the right thing. Tapia was a teacher that taught the students that it is okay to write in English and Spanish, if they knew how to. Tapia stuck up for one of the students when he had to. Blessington and Sapo got into it because of a rue remark from Sapo and once the fight stopped Sapo ran to the bathroom. Tapia took the students side because he heard how awful Blessington was to the students. Tapia showed great integrity and did what he thought was right in that moment.

Maile Maloy tells the story of a middle class girl who was dealt the bad hand of growing up on a ranch. Being the foreman's daughter, the girl is often required to help on the ranch when needed. In the story, it explains that the mother used to help out until she took and office job in town and hasn't returned since. The girls' dad often works late, when he finally returns home after a long day, he grabs a beer and falls asleep in his chair. The daughter has her friend "Carla" over often and they get ready together to go out to the hill, with a big mirror that is in the ranch house.

The girls become older and go away to college. The ranch girl is interested in a cowboy names Andy. Andy becomes intertwined with a girl named Lacey and breaks the girls' heart. Andy is into bull riding,



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