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Children need order and rules, and someone to enforce those rules. When no adults are present to enforce these rules, there has to be a leader. Who is the best leader? In ‘Lord of the Flies’ by William Golding, British schoolboys were going to Australia for safety because of the war. When their plane crashed and they were stranded on a deserted island with no adults, they fought to keep their sanity and be civil and survive. What qualities make a good leader? A good leader needs to take charge of the group and keep everyone in order. A leader also needs to show responsibility, initiative, and courage. I think Ralph is a good leader and obviously better than Jack because Ralph has all these qualities.

Ralph and Piggy find a conch, and Ralph blows in it, calling all the survivors to their first-ever meeting. Ralph says, “Seems to me we ought to have a chief to decide things” (Golding, 26). Then the boys start screaming and yelling out who to pick. Ralph, being responsible and civilized, decides to take a vote, and Ralph gets picked to be chief. Jack is very upset by this because he thought he would be the best fit for chief. Jack wants to be chief because he thinks he is better for the group. He wants to be chief for selfish reasons, to boss people around and punish people. Ralph says: “‘Jack is in charge of the choir, they can be – what do you want them to be?’. ‘Hunters’” (Golding, 23). This reveals that Jack is fine with being a hunter because he can kill things, and is not worried about the group, just worried about getting his way.

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Ralph tells the boys to make shelters (huts) to protect them from harsh weather and to make them feel safe from the beastie. Ralph shows that he is caring and kind-hearted, and worried about how the little uns feel. Jack thinks more about his personal wants and desires, over the little uns. He wants to have fun and kill stuff more than help out the tribe and make them feel safe. Jack would want the Littluns to be scared so he manipulates than and makes them joking his tribe. This is a very selfish and bad quality of Jack, which makes him a bad leader.

Ralph cares more for the boys than Jack. Ralph told the boys the beast is not real, so the boys don’t worry, “But I tell you there isn’t a beast!” (Golding, 36). Jack said there was a beast, “but if there was a snake, we’d hunt it and kill it” (Golding, 36). This shows that Ralph doesn’t want the boys to be scared. Jack lets them believe in the beast and be scared of it, for his own selfish reasons. Ralph listened to everyone and wanted to be in a democracy. Jack didn’t listen to anyone and punished anyone that wouldn’t listen to him. He wouldn’t let anyone speak, especially the weaker boys like Piggy and the Littluns. Piggy said, “‘I got the conch’. Jack turned fiercely. ‘You shut up!’” (Golding, 42). Ralph always treated everyone the same and all the rules applied to everyone. Jack would be very disrespectful to boys, which is another reason why Jack is a bad leader.

In conclusion, Ralph is a good leader because he is responsible, initiative, and courageous. Jack is a poor leader because he is disrespectful, manipulative, selfish, and unfair.

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