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An important idea in “On the Sidewalk Bleeding” by Even Hunter was that of the importance of having your own identity. Andy, the central character of this short story taught me a valuable lesson as to the significance of this. He also made me aware of the fact that we need to think things through thoroughly rather than making impulsive decisions. Andy was a sixteen year old boy who Wore a purple Jacket’; the lettering on the back of the Jacket read ‘The Royals,’ a name which he was proud to own.
But not until he was stabbed did he realize the reality of taking on the identity of what you are not. Underneath the rough, tough appearance of the Jacket Andy was a normal boy, who wanted to live a normal life and achieve many things… But now he was dying. Andy had made the fatal mistake of wearing the Jacket of a gang.
He had thought that this would give him power and prestige, and did not realism until too late that his identity needed to come from himself, that he had to work hard, and be himself rather than simply follow a crowd in order to form it.
This taught me that we an take on someone else’s identity the easy way, but it is not so easy to lose, even when it is no longer wanted or needed. A valuable lesson I learnt from Andy was the importance of having your own identity and the necessity of thinking things through thoroughly before making decisions.
When Andy became part of the gang he did not know that he was about to die, he did not know that it would rob him of his life and destroy his dreams, he did not know that a time would come when he would hate the title and its meaning, he did not know that he would die A Royal when he Just wanted to be Andy.
From this I learned that Andy did not recognize the importance of having his own identity, until he understood that he would be Judged by the group he belonged to, rather than who he was himself. He was ‘A Royal’ and proud of it. However, the time did come when he resented the title, he wanted to get rid of it but couldn’t. This reminds us of our own actions that we have all taken on the spur of the moment while blinded by the glitter and glory of what may lie ahead, without taking the time to stop and think that it may be deeply regretted. We are simply attracted by someone else’s power and think we can share it with no effort of our own.
It teaches us that we need to spend time in thought, instead of making impromptus decisions, in order to avert these disastrous outcomes. ‘The boy lay on the sidewalk bleeding to the world he wasn’t ‘Andy he was simply a ‘boy…. ‘a royal’ how could he escape the title and Jacket that branded him with a stupid word, that to him now seemed meaningless? ‘If he had not been wearing the Jacket he would not have been stabbed, the knife had not been plunged in hatred of Andy. The knife had only hated the purple Jacket; the Jacket was a stupid, meaningless thing that was robbing him of his fife and identity. It is clear that Andy understood too late; however, it has taught me that if we give up our identity to take on that of another group or body we may lose our own completely. It takes time and effort to find our own identity; teenage years in particular are a time for building identity, however, they are often too busy and too occupied to take this time and effort and therefore turn to a gang for the identity they also an important idea in “The Sniper” by L. Flattery. Unlike Andy in “On the Sidewalk Bleeding” the sniper has no name and is only referred to as ‘The Sniper’ money who kills.
This text taught me, that in war nobody has a face; nobody has an identity of their own. This story is about two snipers shooting at each other from opposite roof tops. “A woman darted toward the side street. The sniper fired and she fell with a shriek into the gutter. A man’s head and shoulders appeared, looking toward the sniper. The sniper raised his rifle and fired again, the head fell heavily on the turret wall. ” The short story ends ironically when the sniper realizes that he has killed his own brother “The sniper turned over the dead body and looked into his rooter’s face. Only then when he saw his “brothers” face did he realism that his opponents were all individuals with identities of their own. A valuable lesson this taught me was that in war nobody has a face, everyone is Just shooting at the identity of the enemy,’ at the uniform of the opponent. The fact that none of the characters are named proves this yet again. “A young republican,” they are only identified by the “side” they are supporting. Because of this inability to see people as individuals they never realism that they may be killing friends and family. T also taught me that we deed to be prepared for the consequences of what may happen when we take sides of war and that we alone must be responsible for our actions.
Both the short texts “On the side Walk bleeding” and “The Sniper” look at this idea of identity. However, while Andy finally recognizes the danger of not having his own identity and dies rejecting the gang’s overriding one, we are left to assume the sniper’s ultimate understanding of the danger of losing your identity, that he will realism that he is in conflict with humans and will begin to wonder about the identities of all he has killed.
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