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How George Washington Has Influenced Me - Essay Example

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Instructor name Date How George Washington Has Influenced Me George Washington, the “Father of our Country” was unlike any politician, of his time or since. He was apolitical, lacking a rigid ideology or political position which is a concept foreign to people in his time or ours…
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How George Washington Has Influenced Me
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"How George Washington Has Influenced Me"

He was a man of unquestioned integrity, loyal to the country and its people. He influenced some of the most influential people in history, the citizens and leaders of many countries. His calm demeanor, selfless sacrifice and powerful leadership during the most tumultuous time in American history has also impressed and influenced me. Washington was born during a time in America when only wealthy landowners had access to a good education, opportunity and political power. His family was part of this aristocracy but his father died leaving the family poor. At an early age, Washington was forced to quit school and work to help support his family. He became a surveyor which meant spending many weeks and months at a time deep in the woods where he became an expert tracker and hunter. Born into the aristocracy but developed into an experienced woodsman, a rare trait and combination of skills that would eventually serve him and the country well. In other words he was born into a soft, elitist way of life but made himself into a man’s man worthy of respect and admiration. He would carry this self confidence into his next venture, commanding soldiers. Washington was a towering physical specimen who could fit in with any social group, a man who soldiers as well as commanders and wealthy businessmen could relate to. Leading a company of men while still in his early 20’s, he distinguished himself on the battlefield by acts on courage under fire. At this time he was fighting for the English army battling Indian insurgents and the French. Following his enlistment in the army Washington decided to live his life as a farmer and statesman in the Virginia legislature but the Continental Congress enlisted his help to command the rag-tag Continental army against the most powerful military in the world at that time. Underfunded, out-manned and out-trained, this collection of citizen soldiers suffered through unbearable hardships. Many times they went without pay, food, adequate clothing and shelter during one of the worst winters in history. Washington faced what would seem an impossible task yet endured years of doubts and desertions by a morally defeated army. He lost more battles against the British than he won yet still displayed confidence in the mission, the men and the country. The Continental Congress trickled money to the army. Washington funded a portion of the war effort himself using the fortune he made farming. Through it all he remained humble and resigned to do his duty for the country. If the newly formed Continental Army would have been defeated Washington certainly would have been hanged for treason. He had chances to defect back to the British but unlike another general, Benedict Arnold, Washington stayed true to his word and to his new country although the odds were stacked high against him. A man with this level of conviction makes the trials most of us endure seem very small and meaningless. Just thinking of the desperate, impossible and stressful situation he was in influences me, encouraging me to stop whining and making excuses when life events do not unfold like I would prefer. When the Revolutionary War ended, Washington was unquestionably the most popular and respected man in the new nation. Those in Congress who did not necessarily agree with him still respected him and knew he wielded all the political power. Washington could have named himself king, a title that people Read More
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