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Old 07-16-2015, 12:32 PM
 
261 posts, read 203,023 times
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Thanks Acajack. I know who Benedict Arnold was, but I'm probably more knowledgeable about history than the average person, and I don't know if he was even mentioned in my history classes in high school. If so it would have been in passing in the context of the attempted invasion of Canada by the United States during the War of Independence.

Objectively, Benedict Arnold was a traitor; fighting for a belligerent group and then plotting with their enemy to surrender your troops to them and defect certainly falls under the definition of treason. But I'm not going to make the automatic equation traitor = bad person. I don't think it's constructive to label people as bad in the first place. He obviously was a complicated person and had his reasons to defect; history will judge him for his actions.
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Old 07-16-2015, 02:06 PM
 
34,384 posts, read 41,480,724 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Migratory Chicken View Post
. He obviously was a complicated person and had his reasons to defect; history will judge him for his actions.
History has judged him, today his name is synonymous with the word traitor=
Benedict Arnold, American traitor, born - Jan 14, 1741 - HISTORY.com
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Old 07-16-2015, 04:14 PM
 
Location: Toronto
12,581 posts, read 11,141,644 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jambo101 View Post
History has judged him, today his name is synonymous with the word traitor=
Benedict Arnold, American traitor, born - Jan 14, 1741 - HISTORY.com
History Jambo - but who is doing the judging when it comes to history.. Those who may have a certain bias towards a certain narrative.

Truth is we can never know all the complicated factors that would compel a human being to make the decision(s) they make.. He may have technically been a traitor, but we can never know if he wasn't at least in part justified in making the decisions he made at the time.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Migratory Chicken View Post
Thanks Acajack. I know who Benedict Arnold was, but I'm probably more knowledgeable about history than the average person, and I don't know if he was even mentioned in my history classes in high school. If so it would have been in passing in the context of the attempted invasion of Canada by the United States during the War of Independence.

Objectively, Benedict Arnold was a traitor; fighting for a belligerent group and then plotting with their enemy to surrender your troops to them and defect certainly falls under the definition of treason. But I'm not going to make the automatic equation traitor = bad person. I don't think it's constructive to label people as bad in the first place. He obviously was a complicated person and had his reasons to defect; history will judge him for his actions.
Good post - I agree its just not so simple.
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Old 07-19-2015, 12:24 PM
 
34,384 posts, read 41,480,724 times
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We can spend a lot of time discussing the minutia of the whys and wherefores of Benedict Arnolds actions but if we want history's general reference to the man then he's considered a traitor who sold out his own country and conspired with the enemy.
https://www.google.ca/#safe=active&q=benedict+arnold
I cant find any data that justifies the actions he took,but i'd be interested in reading anything that goes contrary to what i learned in school.
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Old 07-19-2015, 04:07 PM
 
Location: Toronto
12,581 posts, read 11,141,644 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jambo101 View Post
We can spend a lot of time discussing the minutia of the whys and wherefores of Benedict Arnolds actions but if we want history's general reference to the man then he's considered a traitor who sold out his own country and conspired with the enemy.
https://www.google.ca/#safe=active&q=benedict+arnold
I cant find any data that justifies the actions he took,but i'd be interested in reading anything that goes contrary to what i learned in school.
To be honest - this is why I don't really like 'history' other than accounting for what happened. If it sticks with the facts as historians know it fine - but to try to execute judgment or to explain human behaviour, motives and actions i'm sorry - that's a big MEH and gets into more subjective and shaky territory..
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Old 07-20-2015, 07:07 AM
 
Location: Gatineau, Québec
21,947 posts, read 27,354,178 times
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Regarding Benedict Arnold... good points but I'd venture to say that most people on my Facebook, and most Canadians who see him as a traitor, haven't studied the historical nuances as deeply. If they see him as a traitor it's because of Schoolhouse Rock on ABC or some other American work of historico-fiction they were exposed to.

Like Willis in Different Strokes referring to his little brother Arnold as "Benedict Arnold" because he snitched on him.
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Old 07-20-2015, 04:18 PM
 
Location: Toronto
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Speaking of Benedict Arnold - Not sure if anyone has watched the AMC series Turn Washington's Spies but its really really a fantastic show! Sure beats the countless reality shows on the tube these days.. Anyway, just finished watching season 2 and its been renewed for season 3 in 2016.. Arnold is starting to play a more prominent role and they are just starting to get into his links with John Andre. Its not 100 percent factual (no show is) but still interesting show for those on here interested in this type of genre.
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Old 07-24-2015, 07:00 PM
 
Location: Montreal
359 posts, read 264,304 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by fusion2 View Post
To be honest - this is why I don't really like 'history' other than accounting for what happened. If it sticks with the facts as historians know it fine - but to try to execute judgment or to explain human behaviour, motives and actions i'm sorry - that's a big MEH and gets into more subjective and shaky territory..
Benedict Arnold was an aristocrat who was ready to sacrifice the lives of countless men under his command in exchange for money (he was already very, very rich) and a promotion. In the end of it all the Americans and the British both disliked him. I don't see how he could be anything but a traitor.

Think of if an already rich Canadian general in Afghanistan made a deal to trade the lives of thousands of Canadian soldiers in exchange for money and a promotion in ISIS....
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Old 07-24-2015, 07:03 PM
 
Location: Toronto
12,581 posts, read 11,141,644 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by PBeauchamp View Post
Benedict Arnold is a guy who was ready to sacrifice the lives of countless men under his command in exchange for money (he was already very, very rich) and a promotion. In the end of it all the Americans and the British both disliked him. I don't see how he could be anything but a traitor.
Ooooh ok well the final authority on Benedict Arnold has spoken.. You Benedict Arnold incarnate?
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Old 07-24-2015, 07:07 PM
 
Location: Montreal
359 posts, read 264,304 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by fusion2 View Post
Ooooh ok well the final authority on Benedict Arnold has spoken.. You Benedict Arnold incarnate?
I am stumped trying to figure out how you could view Benedict Arnold as anything but a traitor. If your partner bargained your life for some cash and a promotion at work what would you call that? Betrayal maybe?

Be it as it is, the British looked upon B.A. with disgust for the rest of his life for a reason.
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