President George W. Bush And Antigone: Changing Your Mind

884 words - 4 pages

An old Chinese proverb states that a man who is wise will change his mind often, while the fool will remain obstinate. In Antigone, by Sophocles, King Creon makes a law contradicting a person’s basic human rights, and in the end he pays dearly for it by losing the remainder of his family. In comparison is the late President George W. Bush, he, in the early years of his presidency, launched an illegal war on Iraq. Both leaders ultimately met their downfall, and in Creon’s case, lived out his own words, “the stiffest stubborn wills fall the hardest” (528-529).
In Antigone Creon reveals his obstinate nature and how even someone as important as a king is not invulnerable to the problems such a character flaw causes. In the beginning of Antigone the townspeople of Thebes rejoice in their new leader, “Creon,” they call, “the new man for the new day” (174). The repetition of ‘new’ shows how the city is ready to welcome Creon with open arms; this outright praise of Creon shows how highly he is regarded by his people. “You cannot know a man completely…his sense of judgment, not till he’s shown his colors…making laws” (194-197). Here Sophocles is showing the reader not to trust Creon absolutely because even if it seems that it is a new age is dawning, Creon may not be a good leader. In this passage Creon seems determined to prove that he is as strong as Oedipus and Laius to whom Thebes was extremely loyal even through tough times, he is so desperate to prove himself that soon after he sentences Antigone to death. Later, after Antigone has been captured, Creon’s own son, Haemon, comes to him saying, “don’t please, be quite so single-minded” (789). At this point Creon is being directly told of what he is doing. Haemon is someone Creon should be able to trust, his last living son, and yet Creon refuses to listen and actually becomes even more incensed that someone weaker than him is presuming to tell him what to do. Haemon also warns Creon of how the city mourns for Antigone saying how nobody deserved death less. Later, once Creon has reached his own anagnorisis, it is too late, fate has offered him chance after chance, a prophet, his own son, the townspeople of Thebes all warned him, he realizes his mistakes but there is no one left to make amends with.
Similarly, late President George W. Bush made an error in judgment—the Iraq war, and, like Creon, he loses the respect and loyalty of his country. “Further to 90%, the highest Gallup has ever measured for a president” (Gallup Polls), scream the headlines in 2001, right after the 9/11 attack. At this...

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