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Recently, there has been a spate of superhero movies being released in Hollywood; The Ironman series, the Dark Knight series, the Avengers, the Amazing Spiderman, X-Men First Class, Man of Steel and Thor. Now I’m a big fan of comics and Batman just happens to be my favourite crime-fighting, martial arts performing millionaire.
But all this got me thinking about the need for superheroes in society. Why do we Humans need Super humans to help fight crime and other such stuff? Why can’t we puny little creatures do it ourselves?
What is the reason? Why do we look up at these extraordinary people and wish that they were real? Why not rely on the people whose job it is and who is designated to the things that these people do?
I think it is because we do not trust the Police to do what is necessary to protect us. We look around us and we see the devastation of society galore. We see the crime rates increasing phenomenally, we see rapes and murders and robbery and stabbings and muggings and drug smuggling and violence and no sense of civil order. And then we think to ourselves, what would have been the situation with one of these superheroes about.
We look towards the Armed Forces and then at national security. If I talk only about India, we see cross-border terrorism from the west, military incursions from the North, foreign nationals being smuggled from the east and racial tensions to the south of the nation’s borders. Then we hear about scandals in defence deals and compromises being made with the security of the country. We hear about pilots dying in plane crashes in peace time and we think whether this would have been the case if there was a superhero about.
Then there are out beloved Political Leaders. We look upon them to lead the nation from the front, towards progress and prosperity. But instead, we see large scale corruption, lots and lots of red tape, money laundering, caste politics, divisive strategies and financial failure. We see more walk-outs in parliament in a single session than bills passed in a year. When we hear the politicians blaming each other for ‘unfortunate’ incidents, we wonder if things would have been different if we had a wise superhero about.
Well, we can wonder and wonder and we’ll probably never know but can we pause for a moment to think of those superheroes we just criticized? Yes, I mean the above people I just hit out at. I believe that there are always “A Few Good People” who behave like a Superman or a Green Lantern or a Wonder Woman in times of crises.
Can we not look upon the police officers who laid down their lives at the siege of Taj and say that these were superheroes? Can we not look upon the soldiers who saved thousands of lives during the Uttarakhand flood and say that these are superheroes? Can we not look with hope towards the new generation of politicians and see a brighter future after this night of turmoil and say that these are superheroes?
Yes, we can.