Get your politics out of my…


In case you couldn’t guess, I hate politics.  And one of the biggest reasons is because of the shattering impact it has upon suspensions of disbelief.  Why do I bring this up?  Because of this upcoming Superman issue.

Now let me make something very clear: I am not upset over this for any patriotic pride or anything.  I am upset because this is stupid on so many levels.  How many?  Let’s count!

The first and biggest mistake is that Superman has (until now, anyway) been a legal citizen of the USA in the DCU.

  • If you are a male over the age of 18, the USA requires you to sign up for “selective services”.  This is so in case there’s ever a military draft, the government can press one into military service.  The law (and Supes is always lawful, remember?) requires Kal-el to be registered in the selective service.  Was he?  Could the military have drafted Superman at any time?
  • And was Clark Kent also registered in this?  What would happen if both were drafted?
  • Did Superman pay taxes?  Where did the IRS send him bills?   How does he declare his annual income?  Actually he shouldn’t – which means Superman must be legally poor.  Does the government send him welfare checks?
  • Clark must also have taxes withheld from his Daily Planet paycheck, does this mean he pays taxes twice?
  • Is his residence considered to be the Fortress of Solitude?  Looking at a political map of the Arctic, is the Fortress in US territory?  There for awhile the fortress was located in South America.  Was it still considered US soil?

So anyway, Kal-el is going to renounce his citizenship.  How stupid will this turn out to be?

  • If the Fortress of Solitude is in the US territory of the Arctic, will he now move it to another one? (perhaps greenland)  Will he then be a citizen of that nation?
  • There are issues with American airspace and all that.  If Superman isn’t a citizen, doesn’t that mean he should go to a customs station and get his visa stamped every time he wants to fly into America?
  • But wait – you’re saying – Clark is already in America.  Which is why this is so stupid!  For Superman to remain within the bounds of the law, every time he changes out of his identity of Clark Kent, he has to exit the US and then enter it legally (assuming he wants to remain lawful good).  And how much sense does it make for him to have two identities with different citizenship status?

The worse part is, like Batman Inc and all of its stupidity (and boy is there a lot), the answer is obvious.  A lot of people have dual citizenship.  Superman should be a citizen of every country on earth.  And you could have gotten a good story out of that with him journeying about the world, completing tasks and stuff to earn citizenship for each country.  You can have conflict where perhaps a country doesn’t want to grant it to him.

Instead we get something that’s only going to bring up more questions and strain our disbelief.  I remember once when I believed a man could fly…

P.S. My comic list?  Anything Green Lantern and Darkwing Duck.  Trust me, they are much more awesome.


6 thoughts on “Get your politics out of my…

  1. Maybe he will get a greencard! You get treated pretty much exactly the same as a US citizen, providing you keep it up to date and don’t leave the country.

    Anyway, I thought the reason was because by renouncing his citizenship he could do stuff without getting the US in trouble, and it had to do with the Iranian government. Given it’s a symbolic gesture, I don’t think the US would treat him any different after (I mean, could they if they wanted to?) The law is pretty flexible when it comes to diplomacy anyway.

    • Superman applying for a green card could be the most boring and awesome comic of all time.

      Of course, the issue of him being seen as a representative of America just brings up more questions…
      1) Again, shouldn’t he have citizenships in several countries? Why isn’t he considered a representative of them?
      2) If he’s seen as a symbol, what good will renouncing his citizenship do? Iran hasn’t been known as having the most factually accurate culture (there was once an infamous youtube video about how Tom & Jerry was a propaganda for Jews as created by one Walt Disney). I actually find it even funnier that he thinks this UN announcement will make a difference to anyone in Iran.
      3) That still doesn’t answer all the questions about him being a citizen before. (see above post)

      Of course, you’re right – part of the question is “is there anything the US could do” but then if Supes didn’t care what America’s laws & general public opinions were, why then would he care about what some other countries think? All this works by him being a lawful-good personality.

  2. Sorry to comment on old topics, I’m kind of reading backwards through your blog….

    The problem could be resolved by not treating Superman as a person. “Superman” doesn’t have a job, “Superman” doesn’t have a house, “Superman” doesn’t do dozens of things. Superman is just Superman– an American flavored force of nature that acts for Good all over the place, saving people and vanishing. All of his actions are lawful, but by vanishing he keeps from going from a Lawful Force to a lawful person.
    Humanizing makes him less “Superman.”

    Superman doesn’t have US citizenship any more than Apple Pie does. What’s Superman’s SSN? Etc. He doesn’t function as a person.

    Which makes his secret identity all the more important.

    • That’s interesting, and makes that idea a podcast once had for “Law & Order in the DCU” (unfortunately, it seems to have vanished from the internet at the moment).

      Although your explanation ends up kind of being a “Voodoo Shark” for the comic. Namely, if Superman isn’t a person, then he can’t renounce his citizenship either.

      Though now I’m curious if Clark has 2 SSNs – one for both identities. Or maybe Supes has a semi-permanent work visa?

      Damn, we are geeks aren’t we? 😉

      • The comic was massively stupid, designed to get attention and make a scene without really having a goal. (She says, humbly.) I don’t think it could be saved….

        But yeah, we’re geeks.

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