Proctor's affair with Abigail results in trouble for him throughout the play. The affair caused the witch-hunts because Abby did not want anyone to have John if she could not. Miller includes a conversation between John and Elisabeth that shows how much pain it has caused them. Later, John's confession of being a lecher results in his charge of wizardry. The event hurt many people in Salem, but it tore John's life by bringing distrust to his home and bringing his eventual death.
His moral strength makes John a hero. He was willing to do anything to save the people that were accused. John brought a deposition of the good names of his wife and friends. John also tried to prove to the court that the girls lied by confessing to lechery by telling the judge, "I have known her," as evidence of Abigail being a whore. He shows that he is devoted to his wife by never giving up on proving her innocence. After being betrayed by Mary Warren, John stays true and says, "You are dragging down heaven and raising up a whore!" Even when his life was the price, John tore his confession to wizardry to save the names of those that would hang. These reasons show why John Proctor could be considered a hero.
Mass hysteria brought the people of Salem to their knees. Many people who were accused confessed and were encouraged to do so by those around. The accused were assumed guilty by most everyone. However, John Proctor blackened his name by confessing his sins to try to save the wrongly accused and save the names of those hanged. Through an affair with Abigail, Proctor managed to maintain moral strength and that is why he is a tragic hero.