12 People Who Started Out as Heroes and Later Became Villains

Life is filled with twists and turns and you never really know what direction certain people are going to take…

Some folks who start out doing great things eventually do awful things and are viewed as villains.

Or maybe they were doing terrible stuff the whole time and it took a while for their deeds to be made public.

Either way, let’s hear from AskReddit users about people who started out as heroes and ended up as villains.

“Jim Jones.

He originally stood up for civil rights when it was really unpopular. [He] was hospitalized and accidentally placed in the Black ward. When the doctors found out, they tried to move him, but he refused.

Then he became a cult leader and used his power and influence to end the lives of [almost] a thousand people.”

“Fred Phelps of the Westboro Baptist Church.

He started out as an attorney defending civil rights.”

“Henry Heimlich, inventor of the Heimlich maneuver.

He made up a bunch of untested uses for it (treating…d**wning victims)…that he publicly talked up. Later, he funded an experiment that involved injecting people with malaria to see if it would treat other conditions.

Heimlich’s son Peter has spent a considerable amount of time trying to show the misjudgments of his father, including bringing light to his use of malariatherapy in Ethiopia and China.

Heimlich even got celebrities to give money to help fund this ineffective and dangerous treatment, which the Ethiopian Ministry of Health said they had no knowledge of.”

“Benedict Arnold. Almost d**d during the Revolutionary War, if I recall correctly, and if he had, he would have been remembered a huge hero and a martyr.

Instead, he lived and changed sides, and is remembered only for his being a traitor.”

“Fritz Haber.

He revolutionized the ability to fertilize crops…which has allowed the earth’s population to increase.

He created other technologies that would then be used in WWI chemical warfare and eventually Zyklon B in WWII that was used to perpetrate the Holocaust.”

“Rudy Giuliani.

Dude was ‘America’s Mayor’ just 20 years ago. A…prosecutor who took down the mob then shepherded NY through 9/11.

Now, he’s just thought of as the increasingly unhinged Trump lackey that sweat hair dye in front of a landscaping company that should’ve been a hotel.”

“Richard Nixon.

Won the 1972 election by a landslide, with only Massachusetts and DC voting for McGovern, on the back of a strong economy.

Two years later, resigns in disgrace over Watergate, in the midst of stagflation, and his reputation has never been rehabilitated.”

“Harry Harlow.

He began his career as a young and unconventional scientist who wanted to prove that humans cannot survive without love and affection. To do so, he needed an animal that was sufficiently humanlike and easy to manage.

He settled on rhesus monkeys. Harlow’s research went in a really dark direction. … He decided to deliberately raise monkeys from birth with as little love and affection. … They were depressed and pretty much became empty shells of living animals.”

“Dr. Oz is the perfect example.

He started out a legitimate talented accomplished cardiothoracic surgeon.

Then he started with his snake-oil peddling on TV and has now completely devolved into a pandering narcissistic Trump-loving politician.”

“Phoenix Jones, that superhero from Seattle.

Saved some people over the years, then eventually was caught by an undercover cop selling MDMA.”

“Conor McGregor.

He had the whole country behind him here in Ireland at one point bar people who thought combat sport is grotesque. He was witty, original, backing himself up and having a Hollywood like rise to stardom.

Now he’s some coke head who the whole country is ashamed of, goes punching old men, clearly sleeps around on his wife while she’s at home with the kids, numerous allegations against him for s**ual assault, just a walking caricature of himself.

He didn’t listen to his own advice. Get in. Get rich. Get out.”

“Mikhail Gorbachev.

Actually this is an interesting one: in the former USSR he’s the hero that lived long enough to become the villain, in the West he’s the villain that lived long enough to become the hero.”

Do you know any more stories like this?

If so, share them with us in the comments.

Thanks in advance!

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