Friday, June 10, 2005

Greatest American

Discovery Channel is having its audience vote for the Greatest American. It looks like the top 25 is somewhat more reasonable than the top 100 (Dr. Phil? Tom Cruise? Come on!), though there are still a couple there that I don't think belong. It's a shame Nikola Tesla didn't make it into the top 25 (electrical engineering bias), though I'm not really sure that he or Einstein count as Americans anyway. It would be nice if they had had a "living Americans" list and a "historical Americans" list to prevent the overall list from being swamped by people from today whose names are at the front of our mind. All 100 nominees can still be found on the site even though the voting currently only allows you to choose from the top 25. So what are five people you would nominate who didn't get nominated? Mine:

Mr. Rogers - He was a positive influence in the lives of countless children. That's pretty important, right?
Buzz Aldrin - Neil Armstrong may have been the first man on the moon, but Buzz Aldrin has been a public face and important advocate in the cause for human exploration of space.
Edgar Allen Poe - An early pioneer in and great influence on horror, fantasy, science fiction, and detective stories. His works tend to be macabe, but he also had a sense of humor.
John Marshall - Established judicial review in the United States.
Thurgood Marshall - A key lawyer in Civil Rights movement and the first African-American Supreme Court justice.


Whew. That was hard. I kept thinking of non-Americans. Anybody else care to try?

2 Comments:

Anonymous Harry said...

Really like the Edgar Allan Poe choice, anyone that dislikes UVA is a great American...

As for my 5 (that's tough)

5. Nat Turner - Though technically not an American when he lived (14 amendment hadn't kicked in) he woke up and realized he'd rather die on his feet than live on his knees.

4. Theodore Roosevelt - Just for being the only one on a horse charging up San Juan Hill... But seriously doing so much with his presidency instead of catering to the special interests that put him there.

3. Charles Hamilton Houston - He was the initial driving force behind the bitch-slapping of Jim Crow. He and his staff took on court cases (debunking Plessy vs Ferguson) which eventually led to Brown vs Board of Education of Topeka (yes Thurgood Marshall was on his staff) sadly he didn't live to see Brown.

2. Ralph Waldo Emerson - "Whosoever would be a man, must be a nonconformist.... A foolish consistency is the hobgoblin of
little minds.... To be great is to be misunderstood."

1. Hugh Hefner (only kidding but I have to leave work now and I've been racking my brain too long)

6/16/2005 4:22 PM  
Blogger SpakKadi said...

TR and Hugh Hefner did make it into the top 100 but didn't make the cut for top 25. TR is one of my favorite presidents and if he hadn't been in the top 100, I definitely would have listed him in my 5. I am disappointed that he didn't make it further, though. Speaking of, I found a blog called Bull Moose. Written in third person. Kind of interesting. (no comments section, though)

6/16/2005 6:13 PM  

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