Real Life Superheroes
Originally posted: http://www.booksie.com/editorial_and_opinion/essay/mrsunshine/real-life-superheroes
Originally posted By MrSunshine
Published: Jun 18, 2011
The world is need of superheroes. It is easy to get a sense of hopelessness as we hear about the terrible
things happening around the world. We all watched the tragedy in Japan; we all remember the attacks on 9/11.
I cannot help but imagine how much different things would be if the world was stuck between the pages of a
comic book. Superman could have saved the towers. Aquaman could have prevented to Tsunamis in Japan.
While it is obvious that Superman doesn’t exist, and that no one in this world has powers like him, there
are real life superheroes.
Nadine Bells, a columnist for Yahoo! News, says that real life superheroes are becoming fairly popular in
New York. Several vigilantes have banded together to form the New York Initiative (NYI.) They patrol the
streets of New York at night, mostly to prevent drug deals from happening.
The NYI is a branch of Real Life Superheroes (RLSH), a superhero agency that operates in many different
countries. There are countless other superheroes that are not part of RLSH, ranging from the Crimson
Fist in Atlanta to Menganno in Argentina. Almost every country has their own masked crusader, and some,
like Norway’s Geist, have become national heroes.
This celebrity that some heroes have found has sparked some controversy. People have accused Geist and
others of being glory seekers, and getting the way of the real heroes, policemen.
Andrea Kuszewski, a neurologist for The Institution for Emerging Ethics and Technologies, says that
heroes may not be as good as we think. “As crazy as it sounds, there may be a closer link than than most
people would think between the extreme-altruistic personality and sociopathic personality. Would it shock
you to know that two people, one with the traits of extreme-altruism (X-altruism) and the other the traits of a
sociopath, could be related? Even siblings?” She goes on to point out that people trying to stop law breakers
often end up breaking laws themselves. That brings up another interesting point. How do policemen
and other authorities feel about real life superheroes? They’re not necessarily fans, but they’re not
Police in Seattle, Washington don’t really take the men in tights seriously. In fact, they released an office
memo making fun of them. They also say that being a vigilante is very dangerous, but nothing wrong with itif
rules are followed. “There’s nothing wrong with citizens getting involved with the criminal justice process — as long as they
follow it all the way through [by calling 911 and attending court],” said Jeff Keppel, spokesman for the Seattle
There have been in incidents where a member of RLSH has been sentenced to prison time. In 2008 a hero
(not named) shot a man trying to break into a car. The man didn’t survive the shot, and the hero served nine
months in a Washington prison for manslaughter. Questioning someone’s motives for doing something
is easy, but if what they are doing is good, should there be any question at all? Does it matter why someone is
doing something, if they’re doing the right thing, or helping others? I guess it comes down to what you would
want for yourself.
If you were being robbed or beaten, and a super hero came to your rescue, would you accuse them of
being a glory seeker, or would you thank them for their services?