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Whether Ned Kelly was a hero or a villain depends on the basis of arguments an individual uses in classifying his actions. Of great importance, is beginning by understanding the subject matter of the discussion? A hero refers to male characters that, in the face of danger and adversity or from a position of weakness, display courage and will for self sacrifice. However, such a definition only brings the martial excellence locking out moral excellence which is very important in concluding how heroic a character is. A villain on the other hand refers to an "evil" character that tends to have a negative effect on human existence. This brings out a picture of a cruelly malicious person who is involved in or devoted to wickedness or criminal acts to inflict both emotional and physical pain to the subject. They are referred to as assailants.
Ned Kelly was an Australian bush ranger who eluded from their home and sort to live in the bush after being involved in a clash with Victorian police. This clash was a tool that represented the general views of several Australia civilians who resented against the Anglo Australian ruling class. It is during his stay as a bush ranger that Ned formed a gang that turned out to be mere cold blooded cop killers, hell bent in eradicating Victorian police unit.
As a hero Ned Kelly brings out his general dislike for the police because of their brutality to the civilians. This is evident when he ends up clashing with them, which in turn forces him to take refuge in the bush. Within the bush a series of fights with police creates a picture of a man ready to save the society from the brutal police force even when the implication may mean his loss of life. This portrays his heroic nature in the face of the society.
Additionally, during this period ideology of Anglo Australian ruling class was generally displeasing in the eyes of the public. Ned couldn’t be silent on this and so formed a gang whose goals were to represent the views of the civilians. This was done through fighting guerrilla warfare. To the public, all individuals killed in the war were to bring redemption from the exploiting regime, a tyrannical administration of Anglo Australian ruling class.
On the other hand, Ned Kelly is seen as a villain in his offence where his retribution led him to put the lives of innocent people at risk. This event was a ploy by Kelly’s Gang that occurred on the 27th of June, 1880. He and his gang ordered sixty hostages into the Glen rowan Hotel in an attempt to trap the police and use them as hostages to get his mum, Ellen, out of prison. This crude act of malevolence brings to light how his crimes were both evil and unforgiveable and were only the start of things that would soon escalate to the villainous act of murder. Additionally, he committed another gruesome murder at Stringybark Creek. He knowingly murdered three innocent policemen. They had been sent to search for him, his brother and other members of the outlawed gang. Unfortunately, after dividing in to two groups, they were over powered by Ned and his men and brutally murdered. This brings the irony of a man trying to represent the civilians by killing other innocent civilians in their line of duty.
To conclude this, no wrong can be made a right by doing another wrong. This implies that Ned Kelly in his movement for the search of humanity should have employed other better methods to arrive at his intended goal, without necessarily harming the life of other innocent civilians. This could have made him a hero of not only martial excellence but also one with moral excellence that respects the chastity of life. Acts of vengeance are common with human beings, but heroism is not achieved by acts of retribution and wanton destruction of lives. Humanity calls for forgiveness and accommodation of those who wrong us because human beings are prone to mistakes and errors.