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Author Topic: If Rorschach is crazy, then so is Superman (and Batman)  (Read 11111 times)
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Aldous
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« Reply #8 on: December 24, 2006, 05:44:44 AM »

I have always interpreted that as meaning Superman is deputized.  That is not the same as saying he is exempt from the same restrictions (beyond jurisdiction) that other law enforcement officials are subject to.  Thus, he can apprehend criminals just like a regular beat cop of FBI agent, but every time he uses his x-ray vision without a warrant or scares someone into confessing a crime or gets a confession without reading the criminal his or her rights he is exceeding his authority and acting like a vigilante.

I would have to agree with you. At the height of his relationship with the authorities (in the Silver Age and Bronze Age, I guess), if he did not follow the correct law enforcement procedures, how would the accused ever be convicted in a court of law? The case would be thrown out, surely?

Although, if you read some of those old comics, it's plain that Superman got away with a lot of things that a police officer would never get away with, eg. grabbing someone and effectively arresting them without reading them their rights or even saying the words, "I am arresting you." Imagine how many people were assaulted by Superman, technically speaking. But I don't have a problem with that. I trust Superman a lot more than I would trust the average cop, and maybe in the Silver Age the authorities understood that Superman is the most honest and dependable law enforcement officer of them all -- I certainly did. Imagine Superman giving testimony in a court of law: if he said he saw you commit the crime, your goose is cooked. Superman would never lie about something like that, and everyone knows it. Even more than being "deputised," the Man of Steel obviously had some sort of dispensation that an ordinary officer of the law could never have. And rightly so.
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« Reply #9 on: January 11, 2007, 10:01:25 PM »

I just wanted to let you and everyone know that it was this thread that led me to try and complete this section of the Superman entry:

http://superman.nu/wiki/index.php/Superman#The_Relationship_with_the_Law-Enforcement_Establishment

It is not done yet, but it already answers a lot of questions.
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Aldous
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« Reply #10 on: January 12, 2007, 03:40:47 AM »

I just wanted to let you and everyone know that it was this thread that led me to try and complete this section of the Superman entry:

http://superman.nu/wiki/index.php/Superman#The_Relationship_with_the_Law-Enforcement_Establishment

It is not done yet, but it already answers a lot of questions.

You'd think it'd be a straightforward subject... But of course it isn't.
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TELLE
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« Reply #11 on: January 12, 2007, 07:38:23 PM »

Imagine how many people were assaulted by Superman, technically speaking. But I don't have a problem with that. I trust Superman a lot more than I would trust the average cop, and maybe in the Silver Age the authorities understood that Superman is the most honest and dependable law enforcement officer of them all -- I certainly did. Imagine Superman giving testimony in a court of law: if he said he saw you commit the crime, your goose is cooked.

The funny thing about this is that it reads like so many other excuses of fascism.  Used to describe anyone besides the most perfect being on Earth (Superman) it would be kind of scary.  I felt (feel?) the same way you do about Superman --he never lies or if he does, he has a good reason, usually as part of a convoluted plot to expose some bad guy (and it will turn out that he was really telling the truth in a metaphorical way).  In the fairy tale world of Superman comics, where all cops are honest and the legal system functions as intended, boy scout Superman makes perfect sense and is completely trustworthy.  Only in the comics! Smiley

Fun shameful anecdote:  years ago I tried to beat a parking ticket, taking the stand and declaring that I was not parked in the no-parking zone.  The judge declared that since the cop who wrote the ticket (and who actually showed up in court) said I was, then he would have to take his side.  Now I'm sure there is a legal term for the judge doing that (taking the side of a deputized agent of the law over some joker who thinks he can park wherever he wants), and I agree that this is an area where what we laughingly call civilization would break down if there weren't these seemingly arbitrary distinctions made by those with power.  But the thing that got me was the reason the judge gave for believing the cop: I had something to lose by lying (whatever the fine was, say $20) whereas the cop had nothing to lose (or gain) by lying.  Of course, a logical fallacy --the cop had everything to lose if it turned out he was making up parking violations willy-nilly and then lying about it in court: his job, respect, etc.  I think the judge slipped up there but of course I never pursued his faux paux.  I was such a little kitten.  But it illustrated to me how fragile the system is and how we could possibly mis-place trust in it.



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« Reply #12 on: January 12, 2007, 08:04:51 PM »

Post-September 11, do you really think Superman would have a cozy relationship with law enforcement anyway? Think about it...he's an illegal alien, he's guilty of at least some vigilantism, and certainly some cops would be motivated by jealousy of him. They'd be looking for a way to get him into Guantanamo Bay, and he wouldn't be entitled to legal representation. Defense contractors might even lobby to bomb the North Pole until he turns himself in. A conscious effort by any party to portray Superman as a suspicious foreigner in the media would probably work, to an extent.

If Jerry Siegel were alive, maybe he would write a story about that.

P.S. Before it comes up, as for Superman's "world citizenship" declared by the UN, it could be rejected by even one veto in the security council. And that depends whether it was a binding resolution in the first place.
« Last Edit: January 12, 2007, 08:07:33 PM by Gangbuster » Logged

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« Reply #13 on: January 12, 2007, 08:46:15 PM »

Another real world/comics paradox --the comic book U.N. is exactly what the name says it is: united.  Plus, you can be sure that in the comics, Superman has helped the leaders of each nation at some point.  I think there is a fanfic story from Sam hawkins on this site about that ...

DC is really missing out --they could have a big crossover event like Marvel if they took your idea and ran with it.  Beats Frank Miller Dark Knight version.


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« Reply #14 on: January 13, 2007, 01:54:55 AM »

The U.N. is worse than useless. They're a bunch of academic tossers who enjoy having meetings.

For Superman to accept anything from the U.N. is ten times more contemptible than any "government lackey" perceptions in the world of "Dark Knight Returns".

Quote from: Gangbuster
...he's an illegal alien

How can an American living in America be an illegal alien?
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« Reply #15 on: January 16, 2007, 02:28:31 PM »

The U.N. has at least kept democracies from fighting each other. As for Superman, he wasn't born on U.S. soil and he's never been naturalized.

But you see my point. Our government, post September 11, hates the UN like you. Why would they not also have something against Superman, a resident alien?
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