1. Welcome to SportsJournalists.com, a friendly forum for discussing all things sports and journalism.

    Your voice is missing! You will need to register for a free account to get access to the following site features:
    • Reply to discussions and create your own threads.
    • Access to private conversations with other members.
    • Fewer ads.

    We hope to see you as a part of our community soon!

Medal of Honor "winners"? WTF?

Discussion in 'Anything goes' started by Colonel Angus, Jun 5, 2008.

  1. Colonel Angus

    Colonel Angus Member

    Is it just me or does it grate on anybody else when recipients of the Congressional Medal of Honor are referred to as "winners" of said medal?

    Case in point: http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/24988705/

    In referring to Jack Lucas, who received the medal at age 17:

    "He was the youngest serviceman to win the Medal of Honor in any conflict other than the Civil War."

    To me, the word "win" sounds like something you receive via a victory in some kind of competiton, by random chance, (like "winning" the lottery, Publishers' Clearinghouse, etc.) or other such event.

    I don't think most MOH recipients refer to themselves as "winners." No doubt they all EARNED that recognition for heroic, lifesaving actions -- and should be referred to as such, even though I don't think "earner" is a real word and "recipient" is too long to fit in most headlines.

    "Winner" just seems to sell these great Americans short, IMHO.

    Rant over. Discuss.
  2. Buck

    Buck Well-Known Member

    It's been a common form of reference for service medals and awards for a long, long time.
    Most of the people I know who have 'won' a medal use the expression.
    My father doesn't say he 'earned' a bronze star and a silver star. He says 'won.'
    It's an accepted phrase.
  3. Inky_Wretch

    Inky_Wretch Well-Known Member

    Col. Angus, what would you prefer?
  4. Colonel Angus

    Colonel Angus Member

    I don't know, really. I was just wondering if anybody else felt the same way I do or if I'm just psycho (wait, don't answer that).

    I understand completely that "to win" and "winner" fits much better into headlines, and to give credit to the AP writer of the above-referenced story, he did use the words "recipient" and "earned" in the first two grafs, even if the Web editor at MSNBC used "winner" in the headline.
  5. Frank_Ridgeway

    Frank_Ridgeway Well-Known Member

    I wouldn't use "winner." Especially if he died while earning the medal, which is sometimes the case.
  6. joe

    joe Active Member

    "Honored with."

    All the Medal of Honor recipients from Iraq and Afghanistan have been awarded them posthumously, including the latest, a 19-year-old specialist who dove on a grenade thrown into his Humvee. Nineteen. I don't know if jesus wept, but I nearly did.
  7. Batman

    Batman Well-Known Member

    I was going to say, I doubt most MOH recipients refer to themselves at all. Doing what they did to earn the award usually gets them killed.

    Oh, and I believe it's just the Medal of Honor, not the Congressional Medal of Honor, according to AP style.
  8. Buck

    Buck Well-Known Member

    The point is the same whether you're talking about the Medal of Honor or another service medal.
    The word 'win' is commonly used. There's nothing wrong with it.
  9. Killick

    Killick Well-Known Member

    I've come across that many times in my reading. My sense of it is that military-types never say "won" when it comes to the MOH. They tend to say the honor is "earned".

    I'd go with that usage, rather than "won," because it calls to attention a little better the gallantry and sacrifice that earned the distinction.
  10. forever_town

    forever_town Active Member

    Earned, honored with, won.

    Any of them are fine, though I see your point.
  11. StevieNicks

    StevieNicks Member

    Frank, you are a wise man.
  12. three_bags_full

    three_bags_full Well-Known Member

    I don't think he's been awarded the MOH, yet. It takes a very extensive investigation to uncover all the facts and award the medal.

    SFC Smith died in 2003, and was just awarded his medal.
Draft saved Draft deleted

Share This Page