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Wednesday, May 14, 2014 

The misinterpretations of Superman, and political biases of What Culture

What Culture listed ten things people get wrong about Superman. Unfortunately, this article is laced with ludicrous leftism, and it begins when they say:
[...] Critics of The New 52 have stated that Superman has departed too far from his mainstream counterpart that embodied “truth, justice, and the American way”, but on the flipside, his jingoistic and religious inheritance in the pre-52 universe has been privy to scrutiny.
They may try to sound neutral, but using words like "jingoism", a hostile substitute for patriotism, only shows where they really stand. In fact, "religious inheritance" is also a pretty biased thing to say. But that's probably nothing compared to the segment about the misperception the Man of Steel doesn't kill. They say:
[...] it’s a notion that’s been mostly followed in the comics but isn’t absolute – the Golden Age often featured Superman murdering evildoers, from destroying fighter planes to whole weapons factories with employees still inside.
"Murdering"? And just what were the nazis doing during WW2? And the communists? Have they no shame? They don't even name either of those totalitarian movements in this article. What a disgrace.

Later along the way, they bring up a very ill-advised example of Superman's intellect on display in a story:
[...] Alongside that, you have the fact that he’s mastered the applications of Kryptonian technology, evidenced with its use at Sue Dibny’s house during Identity Crisis.
Ugh! When they use that abomination as an example for discussing how smart Clark Kent is, they merely destroy whatever point they're trying to make. Besides, Superman, along with many other heroes abused in that story, didn't figure out any of the illogical plot on their own.

On the page where they dispute the perception Supes is all-American, they say:
There was a story in Action Comics #900 (ironically written by Man of Steel writer David S. Goyer) where Superman renounced his American citizenship since he was angry over his actions being labeled as U.S. foreign policy. Of course, this caused a lot of controversy and it was immediately retconned by DC to being a standalone story. However, was it wrong for Americans to get upset over this? There’s no doubt in anyone’s mind that he is a cultural icon in the United States given his role in basically jump-starting the superhero movement; heck, he even wears American colours.
It was worth getting mad about, because on the one hand, concern about the Islamofascist regime in Iran is more than just an American concern. It should be every sane person's concern, no matter where they live in the world. On the other, the story was defeatism incarnate, as Superman just levitated there between two sides, wouldn't make distinctions, and wouldn't disarm Ahmedinejad's forces. But truly, if they're going to use a real life enemy country that hasn't been defeated as a backdrop, then the story only becomes laughable.
But what makes Superman distinctly American? Both his creators were Jewish immigrants, and he himself was by no means a natural-born citizen. Not only that, but If you think about it, none of the many origin stories in Superman’s canon (The Man of Steel, Birthright, Secret Origin, New 52) detail how Ma and Pa Kent got him naturalised (the non-canonical television series Smallville had them making a deal with Lionel Luthor). Superman is sometimes viewed as the embodiment of the American dream – an (illegal) immigrant that rises to the top, much like Andrew Carnegie. Let it be known, though, that the “American Way” has since been open to a much different interpretation than what it was originally conceived to be and that Superman is meant to represent the good in all of humanity, not just ‘Murica.
Someone can't seem to overlook realism and consider that Superman comes from an alien world, and sci-fi has a lot of ideas that aren't bound to the same rules that manage real life. Look how this article perpetuates the leftist hijack claim that Supes is really just an illegal immigrant, when here, he was an infant rocketed to Earth from a dying planet, which would make him more a refugee. Next thing we know, they'll say Starfire is an illegal immigrant too, all the while ignoring that she escaped the clutches of intergalactic slavemongers and evil scientists and fled to Earth looking for safety from the evils that consumed her home planet Tamaran.

They've also failed to do their homework: John Byrne's Man of Steel mini from 1986 told that Jon and Martha Kent raised him in their home during a snowstorm for a few weeks without anybody knowing, thus, they were able to pass Clark off as their own son at ease. And while both comic creators were Jewish, there's a difference in their citizenship status: Jerry Siegel's family did come from Lithuania, but he himself was born right in the USA, in Cleveland, Ohio. Joe Shuster was born in Toronto, Canada, and immigrated to the USA. What Culture's staff writer clearly couldn't be bothered to do better research. But in the end, it's the subtle leftist political biases by the magazine's staff that ruin everything.

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Like most leftists, they don't grasp the distinction (recognized in common law and statute law) between "murder" and "homicide." Murder is always homicide, but not every homicide is a murder. Homicide can be justified by certain circumstances (e.g., self-defense).

And their snotty reference to "'Murica" is too cute by half.

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