There are no superheroes… just ordinary ones

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“A hero is someone who understands the responsibility that comes with his freedom.” — Bob Dylan

Americans are enamored with superheroes, we have been as long as I’ve been alive. It seems we’re always trying to find another person with super-human powers to come to the aid of defenseless victims in society.

I can only imagine this is because we have lost faith in the government’s obligation to protect us.

But I jest

It’s not, and never has been, the government’s obligation or responsibility to provide for our protection. What does the Constitution have to say about this?

We the People [that’s you and me, folks] of the United States [notice it didn’t say “America”], in order to:

  1. form a more perfect Union [to work together],
  2. establish Justice [fair and equitable courts],
  3. insure domestic Tranquility [to prevent States squabbling with other States],
  4. provide for the common defense [I hope this is self-explanatory],
  5. promote the general Welfare [no, this isn’t food stamps or any socialized “welfare” program],
  6. and secure the Blessings of Liberty to ourselves and our Posterity,
  7. do ordain and establish the Constitution of the United States of America.

Nope. No mention of the police or the feds being obligated to protect any person (or even group of persons), only to “provide for the common defense.”

I’ve written about superheroes before, but John’s article says what I was trying to say so much better…

From John Pierce’s article on superheroes:

Perhaps it was the recent release of the movie adaptation of Alan Moore’s brilliant but gritty graphic novel Watchmen which inspired this column. Or perhaps it was the deaths of four truly human heroes in Oakland California which put me in such a dark and somber mood. It pains me to have to do this. It truly does. But you need to know. There are no super heroes. There never were any. […] [While] we know that there are no super heroes, we also know that there definitely are monsters. Oh yes. They walk amongst us every day, watching us the way that wolves watch over the flock. And we live in constant fear of the day that their gaze flicks to us. […] The bitter truth is that when a woman screams in the night, there will not be a masked avenger to swoop in the window and save her. […] Ask the tens of thousands of women who are victimized every year if their cries for help were answered by a superman. […] When a woman screams in the night, she is on her own!

Yes, that sounds pretty bleak, but we’re not here to sugar-coat things like the Brady Campaign tries to do. The reality is that we live in a scary world surrounded by monsters (if you doubt this just turn on the evening news).

Tools

The difference is that we have the tools of self-defense at our disposal.

Just like the two men in Oakland, just like the two men at Trolley Square, they had the tools to be able to defend themselves, and when the time came they used those tools to defend others.

They were prepared physically and mentally to stand up against the monsters.

Virginia Tech

After the Virginia Tech massacre the school took heavy criticism about its delayed response informing the students and staff. The university first informed students via email at 9:26am, more than two hours after the first shooting. In the wake of the public outcry concerning the tardiness of the school’s response, they put into place an “early warning system” whereby students and faculty could be warned via text-messages if a similar event were to occur.

A student was seen with a rifle on campus earlier this month. The “early warning system” let students know… 80 minutes later. What’s worse? Executive Vice President Mark Burstein said he was “extremely satisfied” with the speed of emergency response. Cass Cliatt, University Spokeswoman, also praised the University’s response, adding that she did not believe the 80-minute gap was unnecessarily long.

Ironically, the rifle wasn’t being used maliciously, and, in fact, had was reported to have been rendered permanently disabled prior to it having been brought on campus for use in a school report. Additionally, the student carrying the firearm received the alert via text message and called Public Safety at 12:59 a.m. to say that he might be the individual mentioned in the alert. Interesting how “good guys” do the “right thing” even when they might get in trouble for it.

Refuse to be a victim

The first step down the path to not living in ignorance or fear is recognizing that your safety is your responsibility, no one else’s. The second step is refusing to be a victim.

The tools you have prepared are your only hope of salvation if and when the monsters come around, and if you have not prepared, the monster will almost certainly win.

Would you like to know more?

  • If you liked John Pierce’s article, please DIGG IT to spread the word: http://digg.com/political_opinion/There_are_no_super_heroes
  • If you refuse to be a victim you may want to check out the Refuse to be a Victim program: http://www.nrahq.org/RTBAV/
  • After you’ve made up your mind you might want to find out what companies and organizations have policies making you a Sitting Duck: http://SittingDuckPolicy.com 

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