Relating Governments To Life

Essay by PaperNerd ContributorCollege, Undergraduate October 2001

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In life, things that are built too high or not well enough often fall apart. Buildings, bridges, relationships, teams, governments, and many other things all fall into this category. One specific example is in the book, The Lord of the Flies, by William Golding. The children build a government, but build it up too much and not well enough. The society, and the government fell apart, and the island went into shambles. Many other examples in life are all around us.

One great example of a structure of society falling apart in recent years is the fall of the Buffalo Bills. In the early 1990's, the Bills were the top team around. Going to the Super bowl for 4 straight years, the Bills seemed to have a permanent spot at the top of the league, although they couldn't manage to win one Championship. After the runs, the Bills slowly started to degenerate.

Marv Levy and Jim Kelly, the coach and quarterback, both decided they had enough, and called it quits after one of the greatest football dynasties ever.

After Levy left the Bills, a new, inexperience coach was brought in as the new head coach, Wade Phillips. The Buffalo Bills continued their downfall. With struggling, young quarterbacks, Buffalo continued to fail to make the playoffs. Phillips continued to try to make changes to bring the team back to its championship form, bringing in the experienced, but risky quarterback in Doug Flutie, and a young, powerful quarterback in Brad Johnson. Johnson was injured in the beginning of a promising season, and Flutie took over, and shone as a starter. He carried the Bills to the playoffs, and a personal pro-bowl nomination.

Things seemed to be on the good side, but the next year, Flutie couldn't seem to bring the same magic. Johnson and Flutie both tried to prove themselves as the rightful starters, but neither seemed ready, as the Bills struggled and failed to make the playoffs. At the end of the season, Wade Phillips was let go, along with the GM, for failing to fire the special teams coach. New management was brought in, hiring Ted Donahoe as the new GM, and Gregg Williams as the new head coach. Taking on the heavy responsibility, the new staff faced a rebuilding year brought on by the Bills financial difficulties. Flutie was let go, and the Bills started over, as a young and miserable team that had hit rock bottom.

There are many theories for the downfall of the Buffalo Bills, but using knowledge of other events in the world today, and in world history, theories can be made upon what went wrong.

An athletic team can be compared to a government. The staff is like the President, and the players are like the citizens. At the downfall of a great Presidency or dictatorship, there is usually a recession, especially when somebody less respected fills the void. When Marv Levy left the Bills, Wade Phillips was not good enough to fill his shoes. The "citizens", or the players, weren't respectful to the new management, and the team struggled. The leader had failed to establish himself as the supreme authority, and the team took advantage of him.

This situation can be compared to the fall of Rome. At the end of the Pax-Romana in Rome, a time of great leadership and prosperity in Rome, there was a great leader named Marcus Aurillies. When he died, he passed on his throne as the emperor of Rome to his son, a power-hungry, disrespected citizen of Rome. Unrest occurred and eventually helped to lead to the downfall of Rome. The same thing happened with the Buffalo Bills.

Another thing that often repeats itself in the history of the world is the power struggle. This occurs when two individuals fight over the rule of a government, society, or any other possession. In The Lord of the Flies, Jack and Ralph have a power struggle. When the two leaders feuded, the government fell apart. As Abe Lincoln once said, "A house divided amongst itself cannot stand." In the Civil War, there was a power struggle between the South and North parts of the United States. Both wanted their views to be the bases for the laws in the country, so they fought, and one side lost, but it could have ended up tearing apart the whole country.

Like the book, and the Civil War, the Bills had a power struggle, in the position of starting quarterback. Johnson and Flutie both tried to prove themselves as the leaders of the team, and it tore a whole in team. Instead of finding the better leader, both fought for the position until the end of the year, when still, nobody was proclaimed the starter. This house divided could not stand, and the Bills realized that one of the quarterbacks had to go.

Although insignificant compared to the major conflicts of the world, the Buffalo Bills run on the same human principles as a government. The example showed the breakdown of a government, of a system that couldn't work because of its improper structure, because of the holes previously left by leaders before. We can take information from history, and put it to use in our lives, and we learn important lessons about how governments and systems work, trying to use what we learn to prevent our own systems from falling apart.

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