Sunday, January 09, 2011

a note to would be wanna be superheroes

I get it. I mean we all have had those moments when we imagine ourselves hero and sometimes dare I say superhero. In fantasy world it’s great! We have super speed, we can pick shit up that’s ridiculously heavy and toss it like so much salad, but in reality world, we know this is not the case. I mean, we do know this? Don’t we?

Every year in my classroom I do a unit on superheroes. We discuss character traits, strengths, weakness and the difference between hero and superhero. We acknowledge the heroes in our lives our communities. Firefighters, police officers, the neighborhood crack head that doesn’t let anyone fuck with you. Citizens who protect and serve not looking for praise or celebrity. Who also go through training and know exactly how to carry out their jobs without endangering themselves or other, possibly with the exception of the crack head.

So like, you know how in pretend land, the hero, because in pretend land unless you have a super power like flying, melting shit with your eyes or sense tingling you were a hero or a vigilante. Vigilantes are those dudes or chicks that take shit into their own hands when no one asked them too. clearing throat

ANY WHO, in pretend land have you ever seen, oh I don’t know, Spiderman or Batman do an interview on, SAY, Good Morning America or the Today show? No, No you don’t! And do you know why? Because it’s a fucking secret! Yes they run around in garish costumes with shiny gadgets but that shit is on the low, because just like there are those guys that wanna do good there are those who have no problem running a train on good. So when you go on television and tell people how you used to do this at your last job but folks felt some kind of way, you are telling folks who you are. The point of a secret identity is…it’s supposed to stay secret??? Keep up!!

So in for real world American’s are slipping further and further from reality so I can see how you can mix up pretend and real world from time to time. But in the real world when you get shot no stunt real life dude guy takes the bullet for you. And if you don’t have super powers you are not a super hero. Movies aren’t real and neither is television, sometimes even the news. I know (rubbing your back), it is it’s a hard pill to swallow and I really hope you don’t end up dead because you went public like a dumb ass.

In teaching my Superhero Unit (hands on hips, profile looking fly) what happens is that when students have to take into account character, and that you don’t help people for fame or glory, that how knowing the right thing to do is hard many of them ask to create a villain. We talk about how easy it is to be the villain. No accountability is appealing to them; not having to consider the impact on others is a draw to the darker side. I don’t let them take the easy out in my classroom, but there are plenty of folks who take the easy out in this world. How else does a grown man stab a teenage boy to death in a crowded place over a cell phone?

I think it’s noble to wanna help folks but if you are helping not realizing the danger you are putting yourself in a reality check may be in order….just saying

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