By Mark E. Smith
John Lennon coined it, and I’ve always believed in living it – as a father, as a bread winner and, yes, as one with a disability: A working class hero is something to be.
See, to me, a working class hero isn’t about a literal vocation or social class, but about drive and determination. Are you strong enough every morning, regardless of the challenges you face, to put your boots on and go into your day willing to do whatever it takes to get the job done, with little reward beyond knowing you’ve done right?
And, like I said, this purest form of heroism isn’t about vocation or social class. Yes, the roofer who’s on a roof in July, working 12 hours a day with 130-degrees radiating around him, all to support his family, is a literal working class hero. But, so is a full-time single parent. And, so is one sustaining sobriety. And, so is one thriving with a disability. Although each of these examples are very different – and you can insert any life path into the list that requires internal tenacity to succeed – they all demonstrate an extraordinary work ethic, they all demonstrate quiet, dignified heroics in everyday life.
And, there’s a certain rebellion to being a working class hero, where when life presents roadblocks that others don’t have the strength or courage to knock down, you utter a barely audible F-you, and fight your way through. Working class heroes punch adversity in the face and proceed on.
I want to introduce you to a working class hero of mine, Scott Belkner, who puts on his boots every day and just goes to work. There’s no one motivating Scott but Scott. He’s not someone you know, no fame or money. But, he demonstrates an internal work ethic that demands respect, that sets the bar for how so many of us should approach our lives.
Watch Scott’s story, and I bet he becomes a working class hero of yours, too.