The curtains have closed on the 90th Academy Awards. Lucky for us, the public, we are now completely inundated with the subsequent news, reporting, and photos. It's quite a lot to take in but we aren't really given much of a choice, are we?
Earning an Oscar represents reaching the pinnacle of one's profession — we cannot deny the gravity of this accomplishment — but judging by the way the award is championed, you'd think there was nothing else as prestigious as an Academy Award. Nothing so sought after, so respected, so revered...
If you're not part of the military community, it might make sense to think that. We understand that winning an Oscar is a huge deal — but it's not like they received a Medal of Honor or something, right?
These two recognitions are different beasts with two very different sets of criteria, but it's easy to argue that the military's highest honor is a bit harder to come by than that of the motion picture world. Don't believe me? Here are 5 ways that winning an Oscar is easier than receiving a Medal of Honor.
Related: 6 signs that you might be a veteran
1. Repeat winners
Yes, there actually is a rare breed of men who have been awarded multiple Medals of Honor, but nobody's done it for 100 years. Additionally, many of them were given multiple medals for the same action but by two different services.
Sure, it doesn't seem like it took quite as momentous an achievement prior to 1918 to earn a Medal of Honor, but they weren't just giving them out for a job decently done. Conversely, do a quick scrub of the list of Best Actor or Best Director winners and you'll find more than a few questionable selections.
Meryl Streep has won an Academy Award on three separate occasions. (Photo by Gold Derby).
4. Lifetime-achievement MoH?
As stated above, there are some Oscar winners who, arguably, didn't quite dazzle in the year they won an award. To put it plainly, sometimes, the Academy gets it wrong. This can result in filmmakers not getting their just due for years or decades.
To rectify this, the Academy gives out an honorary Oscar — a lifetime-achievement Oscar. The Academy has given out at least one every year since 1948.
The Medal of Honor doesn't quite work in that fashion, but a couple of American soldiers did get awarded the Medal of Honor for lifetime achievement, so there is a precedent.
One of only two service members to ever receive a Medal of Honor for lifetime achievement (Photo from History.Net)
3. It takes years — and often death — to be recognized
Outside of the occasional snub and the lifetime-achievement Oscars, most winners are recognized within a year or so of their work being released.
There are deceased service members from as far back as World War I still being awarded their proper citation.
Henry "Black Death" Johnson had a night for the ages in 1918. He was not awarded the Medal of Honor until 2015. (Photo from Walking The Spirit Tours).
2. There were more new Oscar winners this year than there are total Air Force Medal of Honor recipients
The Air Force has only awarded 16 Medals of Honor in its 70-year history.
You'll need all your fingers, toes, and plenty of hash marks to number all the first-time Oscar winners from 2018 alone.
Three brand new Oscar winners and one repeat. (Photo from ABC)
1. Campaigns are different
As previously stated, receiving a Medal of Honor can take a little while. Add that to the fact that it may take paying the ultimate price to even be considered and you can quickly see how the campaigns for Medal of Honor consideration differ from campaigns to get the latest buzz movie an Oscar nod.
People fighting for Medal of Honor recognition are typically historians, family members, fellow service members, and the like. Their campaigning is done through Congress and takes decades of quietly applying pressure.
Not so much for the Oscars.
It really can take a while, guys (Photo from Devgru5022 YouTube)