Why was Harrison Bergeron so intimidating?
Harrison Bergeron is intimidating because he is exceptionally above-average in every way. For starters, he is physically imposing – fourteen years old and seven feet tall, forced to carry around three hundred pounds in metal as a handicap to his incredible strength. This would be intimidating to anyone of average size in a society that celebrates differences; in a society such as the one he lives in, in which all individuals are equalized in every way by forced handicaps, those in charge would of course see him as a threat. You cannot mask height or strength as you can beauty. Harrison is exceptionally good-looking as well, and intelligent, having to wear thick headphones rather than a small earpiece to keep him from completing his intelligent thoughts.
Harrison, basically, is a representation of everything the government is fighting against – he is noteworthy, he is undeniably unique. And he has obviously been rebelling against the equalization policies, else the government wouldn’t have arrested him in the first place. And he’s a teenager, the most volatile and unpredictable of all creatures. “I am the Emperor!” he declares to the world after his escape from prison, and invites the public to “Now watch me become what I can become!” With this line it is clear that he protests the forced equality and suppression of skills and talents required by law, and yearns for the freedom to be who he is, and discover how great he can be. It is this capacity for individual thought despite his handicaps, and his refusal to acquiesce to the mandates imposed by the government, coupled with his unmatchable strength, that make him so intimidating.
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